I love the way the Scripture readings at Mass always fit together so well. Four readings; four threads that weave a theme. God offers His People His Law and with it comes a "Blessing and a curse." The blessing for those who obey God and a curse for those who go after other gods (or make themselves gods). We avoid the curses by remembering to take refuge in the Lord as "The Lord is my rock of safety."
Then we hear from St Paul that works of the Law will not save us-Christ has superseded the Old Law; fulfilled it. Then in the Gospel we are told what the Lord expects of us. The Beatitudes have just been preached (as Father reminded us in his homily this morning) and then we hear the words of the blessing and the curse. Jesus is rather clear when he says saying "Lord Lord" and making out we have done stuff in His Name will not get us into the Kingdom. We have to do what He tells us to do-not what we would prefer Him to have told us to do. We can prophecy, cast out demons but if we haven't built our house on HIS rock then it is work in vain. Remember the man who built his house on the sand was just as busy building his house as the wise man up there on the rock-but all his work crashed around him when the storms came.
And the storms came to both houses.
So we have to DO what God tells us to do-not make up an idea of Christ and do what we would quite like it if he said. That's a false god isn't it? And we have to be where He says we should be. Get out of that sand.
Here's a nice big house on a great big rock.
St Peter is buried under here so the rock is rockier than ever.
Jesus chose Simon and changed his name to Peter (Kephas) and said He would build His Church on that rock.
He said to the apostles "He who hears you hears Me and he who rejects you rejects Me."
It is really straight forward when you look at it. We are called to obey the Church. I am grateful to say I no longer find it as hard as I used to. I understand now why marriage is so Holy and contraception so unholy and I even understand why men are priests and ontologically women just can't be-but really I had to give assent before I fully understood. Faith seeking understanding.