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Lenten Weekday
Genesis 17:3-9
Psalm, 105:4-5, 6-7, 8-9
John 8:51-59
Today’s readings are about God’s covenants with His people. In the first reading
from Genesis, God proclaims His covenant with Abraham, in which God makes
Abraham “the father of a host of nations”. God promises that it will be an
“everlasting pact” as He tells Abraham that He will be “your God and the God of
your descendants after you”. The one thing that God asks of Abraham is that
“you and your descendants after you must keep my covenant throughout the
ages”. The Responsorial Psalm which immediately follows serves as a reminder
that “The Lord remembers His covenant forever”. Finally, in the Gospel reading
from John, we are presented with the new covenant which is made to us by Je-
sus Christ. Jesus tells the Jews, “Whoever keeps my word will never see death”.
Each of these readings demonstrates to us the powerful, infinite and complete
love which is promised to us by God. As God presents His covenant to Abra-
ham, promising that he will be the father of many nations, and that
kings will stem from him, God specifically states that His promises are
not a fleeting whim. God states that this is an everlasting pact, and
that all He asks of Abraham and his descendants (yes, that would in-
clude us), is that we “keep his covenant throughout the ages”. For us
humans, a covenant such as this is, I believe, hard to grasp. In our hec-
tic world, we are constantly making agreements with others, including
family members, friends and co-workers. At the moment that we enter
into these agreements, we truly do want to “be there for our child’s
soccer game”, “attend the birthday party of our friend’s mother”, or “sit
-in on our co-worker’s important presentation”; however something
else often comes up which seems to take priority. We mean well, we
want to be true to our word; however we shift our focus. God’s focus
has never shifted from His covenant with us. When Jesus entered our
world, He brought with Him a new covenant, a covenant born out of
God’s love sent to us to walk amongst us. And what was this cove-
nant? Well, it was basically an update to God’s first covenant – no ma-
jor changes, caveats or codicils, simply “Whoever keeps my word will