Offer your body as a living sacrifice.

Sunday, 8/31/14

If we include the Responsorial Psalm we can see that the Church offers us four grand Scripture passages in today’s readings.

In addition to the 63rd Psalm where David spoke of his flesh thirsting for God, we have the great story of Jeremiah complaining about how God had duped him into being a prophet. Too, we have the Gospel where Jesus complained about Peter thinking like a human, rather than the way God does.

Since we can’t stay here all day, let’s just settle on one central passage. Make it the Second Reading where Paul tells us we must offer our bodies as living sacrifices.

We are told we come here to take part in the sacrifice of the Mass. Now, for a primitive man, and for an Old Testament Jew, the worshipper chose an animal such as a lamb to stand in for him offering  himself. He would then take the life of the lamb on God’s altar as a way of acknowledging that his own life belonged to God.

Now, from the first week after Our Lord’s Ascension, the Christians were gathering for the Eucharistic Sacrifice. In it they consciously repeated the sacrifice of Jesus on the cross, but they were also referring to the Eucharistic ritual as their sacrifice too. Now, how do you make the Mass your sacrifice as well as that of Christ?

Paul answered that here when he instructed us, “Offer your bodies as a living sacrifice.”

It doesn’t help you at all for you to come to Mass as a spectator on the sacrifice of Christ.  You can only really take part in the Mass if you join the Lamb of God in offering your whole obedience  to the Father.  

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