Prayer: O Jesus, free me from my blindness. Let me see the truth.
Imagination: (Picture Jesus confronting his contemporaries.)
This is the longest of seven woes pronounced by Jesus. He prophesies his own death and the persecution of the Early Church.
Gospel Text (Read slowly, possibly aloud.)
Woe to you, scribes and Pharisees, hypocrites. You build the tombs of the prophets and adorn the monuments of the just. You say, “Had we lived in our ancestors’ time, we would not have shed the prophets’ blood.” You witness against yourselves that you are sons of those who murdered the prophets. You fill up what your ancestors measured out.
You generation of vipers, how will you flee from the judgment of hell? I send you prophets and wise men and scribes. Some you put to death and crucify. Others you scourge in your synagogues. Others you persecute from city to city.
Thoughts (Read all. Ponder the ones that attract you.)
- Jesus challenges the present generation which claimed they were more enlightened than their ancestors.
- In reality, nothing had changed. They and their ancestors have the same hatred for God’s messengers.
- The killing will continue. Both Jesus and all who preach his name will suffer.
- They are a blind, perverse generation, totally unaware of their evil culture.
- Jesus would save them from this evil, but they reject him.
Affections. (When one touches your heart, use your own words.)
- O Jesus, I share in the guilt of my culture and participate in its sins.
- Only you can save me. Open my eyes!
- Only you point out a different road and say, “Follow me.”
- I am coming, Jesus. I will flee the coming judgment.
- Snatch me out of the pervasive evil. You are my Saviour.
Resolutions: (Possibly you might want to make your own.)
- I will bring a repentant heart.
- I will accept radical changes in my attitudes.
Thought for the Day (To recall your meditation)
You witness against yourselves. You fill up the evil of your ancestors.