The 22nd Sunday of the Year

Deut 4:1-2 & 6-8; Jas 1:17-18, 21-22 & 27; Mk 7:1-8 (Year B)

“Lord, who shall dwell on your holy mountain? He who walks without fault; he who acts with justice and speaks the truth from his heart.”

The psalmist’s question, originally addressed to devout pilgrims journeying to Jerusalem’s Temple sanctuary, echoes down the generations, and must be answered by every person of faith. Essentially it questions the worthiness of any person to stand in the presence of God.

In the Book of Deuteronomy, Moses proclaimed the Commandments and laws of Israel as the divinely revealed path into the presence of God: “Take notice of the laws and customs that I teach you today, and observe them, that you may have life and may enter and take possession of the land that the Lord, the God of our fathers, is giving to you.”

In the fullness of revelation we understand this Promised Land as the conclusion of our journey, as a life lived in communion with Father, Son and Holy Spirit. To enter such a communion we must live in obedience to God’s will rather than our own, must act with his justice and speak his truth from our hearts.

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