Tuesday of the Fourteenth Week in Ordinary Time
(Hosea 8:4-7.11-13; Matthew 9:32-38)
What do we live for? Some will say for their families. Other may not say it but their actions indicate that they live for pleasure – food or perhaps sex. A few seem to live for their work. The prophet Hosea castigates the people of Israel for living for idols.
Hosea was an eighth century B.C. prophet who preached in the Northern Kingdom of Israel with its capital in Samaria. The people at the time were inclined to worship the fetishes of their pagan neighbors instead of the Lord who saved them from servitude in Egypt. It is not difficult to suggest a reason for their infidelity. The pagan deities were much less demanding than God. Where the Lord insisted that the people control their appetites, paganism generally extolled licentiousness.
In Jesus the commands of God are brought to fulfillment. To many they seem harder to obey – not even to look with lust or not even to resist a rebuke? But this is because they forget that Jesus walks with us to share our burden.