Tuesday of the Thirteenth Week in Ordinary Time
(Genesis 19:15-29; Matthew 8:23-27)
In one of her short stories, American Catholic novelist Flannery O’Connor shows a man taking his grandson on a day trip to Atlanta. The two have such a harrowing time that the boy comes to see the city as so evil that he never wants to return. In ways the Book of Genesis has a similar vision of cities.
Sodom is not only the city where God’s messengers are manhandled; it is corrupt to the core. Like the city of Babel before it, Sodom cannot help from becoming wicked because sinful men and women come there in droves to conspire against God. Rather than curtailing their sinful desires, they seek autonomy or self-rule, which is often no more than justifying one’s evil tendencies. The results are calamitous as the calling down of fire on Sodom shows.
God has made clear how He wants us to live first by giving the Israelites the Law and then by sending His Son Jesus. He perfects the Law with the grace of the Holy Spirit. Now we can build societies based on eternal justice if we practice Jesus’ ways.