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Trust in God makes us free

Monday, 20 January 2020



During his homily, the Holy Father reflected on the day’s First Reading in which Saul was rejected as King, and on the importance of having a “docile heart”. Saul believed his own interpretation of God’s command to the Israelites not to take anything from the Amalekites whom they had conquered. However, rather than obeying God, Saul allowed the people to plunder and then offered a sacrifice to God. With this lack of docility, Saul began going through the stages of corruption: “it begins with a little disobedience, a lack of docility, and it keeps going further”.

The “sin of lacking docility” lies precisely in that preference for “what I think and not what the Lord commands of me which I do not understand”. Indeed, when we rebel against the Lord’s will, we are not being docile and “it is like a sin of fortune-telling” to which you turn “just in case”. Saul rejected the way of the Lord and thus he was rejected as King. This, Pope Francis pointed out, “should make us think a little about our own docility. We often prefer our own interpretation of the Gospel ... for example, when we fall into casuistry, into moral casuistry” which is not the Lord’s will. “When I am obstinate, and turn the Word of the Lord into an ideology, I am an idolater”, he stressed.

The newness of the Word of the Lord, the Pope continued “always wins.... It overcomes idolatry, it overcomes pride, and it overcomes this attitude of being too sure of ourselves”. Reminding the faithful that a good Christian means being docile to the Word of the Lord, he advised listening to what the Lord says about justice, charity, forgiveness and mercy. Being Christian means being free through trust in God. 

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