Dear Brother and Sister in Christ,
Welcome to Catholic Mass Readings in Biblemsg.com. We are on the March 29, 2023 in the 5th Wednesday of Lent. Today’s Mass readings and reflection on Daniel 3:52, 53, 54, 55, 56; Jn 8:31-42. In our daily reflection today, the Main theme is Trust during the test!
Catholic Mass Readings
Main Theme of the Day: Trust during the test!!
Table of Contents
|First Reading||Dn 3:14-20, 91-92, 95|
|Gospel Reading||Jn 8:31-42|
Thus says the Lord:
14 King Nebuchadnezzar questioned them: “Is it true, Shadrach, Meshach, and Abednego, that you will not serve my god, or worship the golden statue that I set up?
15 Be ready now to fall down and worship the statue I had made, whenever you hear the sound of the trumpet, flute, lyre, harp, psaltery, bagpipe, and all the other musical instruments; otherwise, you shall be instantly cast into the white-hot furnace; and who is the God that can deliver you out of my hands?”
16 Shadrach, Meshach, and Abednego answered King Nebuchadnezzar, “There is no need for us to defend ourselves before you in this matter.
17 If our God, whom we serve, can save us from the white-hot furnace and from your hands, O king, may he save us!
18 But even if he will not, know, O king, that we will not serve your god or worship the golden statue which you set up.”
19 Nebuchadnezzar’s face became livid with utter rage against Shadrach, Meshach, and Abednego. He ordered the furnace to be heated seven times more than usual
20 and had some of the strongest men in his army bind Shadrach, Meshach, and Abednego and cast them into the white-hot furnace.
91 King Nebuchadnezzar rose in haste and asked his nobles, “Did we not cast three men bound into the fire?” “Assuredly, O king,” they answered.
92 “But,” he replied, “I see four men unfettered and unhurt, walking in the fire, and the fourth looks like a son of God.”
95 Nebuchadnezzar exclaimed, “Blessed be the God of Shadrach, Meshach, and Abednego, who sent his angel to deliver the servants that trusted in him; they disobeyed the royal command and yielded their bodies rather than serve or worship any god except their own God.
Daniel 3:52, 53, 54, 55, 56 (52b)
Response: Glory and praise for ever!
31 Jesus then said to those Jews who believed in him, “If you remain in my word, you will truly be my disciples,
32 and you will know the truth, and the truth will set you free.”
33 They answered him, “We are descendants of Abraham and have never been enslaved to anyone. How can you say, ‘You will become free’?”
34 Jesus answered them, “Amen, amen, I say to you, everyone who commits sin is a slave of sin.
35 A slave does not remain in a household forever, but a son always remains.
36 So if a son frees you, then you will truly be free.
37 I know that you are descendants of Abraham. But you are trying to kill me, because my word has no room among you.
38 I tell you what I have seen in the Father’s presence; then do what you have heard from the Father.”
39 They answered and said to him, “Our father is Abraham.” Jesus said to them, “If you were Abraham’s children, you would be doing the works of Abraham.
40 But now you are trying to kill me, a man who has told you the truth that I heard from God; Abraham did not do this.
41 You are doing the works of your father!” (So) they said to him, “We are not illegitimate. We have one Father, God.”
42 Jesus said to them, “If God were your Father, you would love me, for I came from God and am here; I did not come on my own, but he sent me.
Catholic Homily for Today
Focus: Many seek freedom and it is natural and needed. But they should realise what true freedom is. They should know how to attain it. They should also follow the right means to get it
1. Freedom is a strong theme for our reflection today. In the first reading from Daniel, three youngsters Shadrach, Meshach, and Abednego lose their freedom. They are thrown into the fire because they refuse to worship false gods. They prefer death rather than disloyalty to their true God. They prefer to forfeit their temporary freedom rather than lose their dignity as God’s children. They prefer slavery for the sake of faith rather than slavery to sin
2. Many think they are free because they have free access to many things and pleasures of the world. As they have the freedom to use or abuse as they like, they imagine themselves to be free beings. Thus, they equate licentiousness and self-indulgence with freedom. But actually, this is nothing but slavery to evil. This is what Jesus clearly teaches: Whoever commits sin is a slave to sin and is not free
3. Any freedom to do wrong is only false freedom. Any freedom that does not lead and contribute to good and positive is not true freedom. Therefore, freedom is tested by truth. Freedom is true when it abides in truth and promotes truth. Any freedom that endangers truth and indulges in falsity is not freedom but only slavery
4. That is why Jesus asserts: Know the truth and truth will make you free. The three youngsters knew the truth. They knew that only true God is the highest priority and only obedience to Him is the highest duty. They knew that serving the king or the false gods may bring temporary relief and freedom but it will cause eternal loss and damnation. They were ready to be burnt in the natural fire rather than the fire of hell. They were truthful and faithful to their faith. That is why God miraculously sets them free
5. On the contrary, the Jews do not see the truth, do not accept it, and follow it. They do not recognise the truth of Jesus, his identity as the Son of God and the Messiah. They do not accept the truth proclaimed by Jesus. They do not realise the truth about their sinfulness and unfaithfulness. They do not realise that Jesus himself is the truth that sets us free. They fail to repent and believe. They fail to live truthful and authentic lives. Instead, they are steeped in hypocrisy.
Direction: We need to constantly reflect and see whether the freedom that we passionately seek and fight for is really making us free people who are not enslaved to sin. Freedom opposed to truth is only false.
Hope you had a good experience reading the catholic reflection for the day. With another inspiring message we shall meet in the next post. Stay Tuned in Biblemsg.com Thank You.