Prayer – O Jesus, make my heart sincere in my love for you.
Imagination – (Picture Jesus dining with the Pharisees)
Jesus spent much time at table, with Pharisees who were deeply religious. (Pharisees did not participate in any way in Jesus’ death). The gospels use the Pharisee stories to correct false religious ideas and to highlight Jesus’ teaching on the importance of inner decisions. This meal was probably around noon.
Gospel Text: (Read slowly, possibly aloud)
A certain Pharisee asked Jesus to dine with him. So Jesus entered his house and sat down to eat. The Pharisee began to question within himself why Jesus did not wash before dinner.
The Lord said to him, “You Pharisees! You clean the outside of the cup and dish, but within you are filled with rapaciousness. You fools! Did not he who made the outside, also make the inside, too? But, if you give alms, all will be wiped clean for you.
Thoughts: (Read all. Ponder the ones that attract you.)
- The man invited Jesus to dinner with a good motive.
- However, his inner thoughts are certainly judgmental.
- These inner thoughts have changed the atmosphere.
- Jesus attacks the problem in front of everyone. He cites the basic flaw in the Pharisees’ religious practice.
- They stress external regulations and do nothing about their sinful hearts.
- If God made the inside and the outside, we should be concerned about both.
- As always, Jesus offers a solution. Giving alms will cleanse the heart. The inside will be clean.
Affections: (When one touches your heart, use your own words.)
- O Jesus, come to my table. Dine with me and stay with me.
- Jesus, who am I to judge? You judge me. You are the Lord of all history.
- What are my flaws, Jesus? Reveal them and I will purge them.
- My heart is sinful but You take away the sins of the world.
- Cleanse me, inside and out. All needs to be purified.
- What a solution! I give alms and all is cleansed. I will use my money to purchase my cleansing.
Resolutions: (Possibly you might want to make your own)
- I will ask Jesus to cleanse me.
- I will always be generous with my money.
Thought for the Day: (To recall your meditation)
If you give alms, all will be wiped clean.