Love righteousness, you rulers of the earth,
think of the Lord in goodness
and seek him with sincerity of heart;
because he is found by those who do not put him to the test,
and manifests himself to those who do not distrust him.
For perverse thoughts separate people from God,
and when his power is tested, it exposes the foolish;
because wisdom will not enter a deceitful soul,
or dwell in a body enslaved to sin.
For a holy and disciplined spirit will flee from deceit,
and will leave foolish thoughts behind,
and will be ashamed at the approach of unrighteousness.
For wisdom is a kindly spirit,
but will not free blasphemers from the guilt of their words;
because God is witness of their inmost feelings,
and a true observer of their hearts, and a hearer of their tongues.
Because the spirit of the Lord has filled the world,
and that which holds all things together knows what is said.
O Lord, you have searched me and known me.
You know when I sit down and when I rise up;
you discern my thoughts from far away.
You search out my path and my lying down,
and are acquainted with all my ways.
Even before a word is on my tongue,
O Lord, you know it completely.
You hem me in, behind and before,
and lay your hand upon me.
Such knowledge is too wonderful for me;
it is so high that I cannot attain it.
Where can I go from your spirit?
Or where can I flee from your presence?
If I ascend to heaven, you are there;
if I make my bed in Sheol, you are there.
If I take the wings of the morning
and settle at the farthest limits of the sea,
even there your hand shall lead me,
and your right hand shall hold me fast.
Jesus said to his disciples, “Occasions for stumbling are bound to come, but woe to anyone by whom they come! It would be better for you if a millstone were hung around your neck and you were thrown into the sea than for you to cause one of these little ones to stumble. Be on your guard! If another disciple sins, you must rebuke the offender, and if there is repentance, you must forgive. And if the same person sins against you seven times a day, and turns back to you seven times and says, ‘I repent,’ you must forgive.”
The apostles said to the Lord, “Increase our faith!” The Lord replied, “If you had faith the size of a mustard seed, you could say to this mulberry tree, ‘Be uprooted and planted in the sea,’ and it would obey you.
In the last lines of today’s Gospel the Lord tells us plainly that our words of faith can work supernatural wonders. Because of that, if we have faith, we also have authority.
Jesus is saying this right after his warning about the contagious effect of our sins. He does not want others, especially innocent children to stumble because of a bad example. Because we have authority, we can rebuke another disciple for their sin. We rebuke each other so the evil does not spread. In the worst cases, it spreads to innocent children which is something that God hates.
Today, we live amid real insanity. People say that homosexuals can form a marriage union and that males can menstruate. People claim that there are many genders and not just two. Parents will accept that a young child can believe that they are a different gender than their biological gender. Parents allow all sorts of dangers to their children with access to computers at young ages. Drag queens read books to children in public libraries, sexually perverted people sent to infect messages of gender confusion, indecency, and lewdness. Where are the adults who will protect the children? Are they being open-minded?
The question is, what authority are we obeying? If we obey God and our works are done in Him, we have authority and power. If we obey the world, the flesh and the devil, we serve them and our only power is in destruction.
God is everywhere and in our mind and our consciences. The wise obey Him and listen to Him to grow in holiness and discipline themselves in His law.
Have you rebuked anyone lately? But we say that we cannot judge. How do we answer the Lord when He tells us to rebuke our fellow disciples for sin? How many go to church and work in the church who are pro-abortion or pro-homosexual marriages? How many Catholics believe in co-habitation before marriage? They have no one to tell them that they are corrupting the world for the children who are inheriting this society and culture.
It may not be easy to admonish others, and we can be kind, if they can hear it, but we must remember that the work of God is correction as well as encouragement. “Wisdom is a kindly spirit, but will not free blasphemers from the guilt of their words.” It could come down to us that someone finally recognizes in a timely rebuke what his conscience has been saying, and what God has been trying to say to him.