DAILY MASS READINGS (January 29, 2020)

WEDNESDAY OF THE 3RD WEEK IN ORDINARY TIME (YEAR II, Green)

Reading 1 (2 SAMUEL 7:4-17)

A reading from the 2nd Book of Samuel

That night the LORD spoke to Nathan and said:
“Go, tell my servant David, ‘Thus says the LORD:
Should you build me a house to dwell in?
I have not dwelt in a house
from the day on which I led the children of Israel
out of Egypt to the present,
but I have been going about in a tent under cloth.
In all my wanderings everywhere among the children of Israel,
did I ever utter a word to any one of the judges
whom I charged to tend my people Israel, to ask:
Why have you not built me a house of cedar?’

“Now then, speak thus to my servant David,
‘The LORD of hosts has this to say:
It was I who took you from the pasture
and from the care of the flock
to be commander of my people Israel.
I have been with you wherever you went,
and I have destroyed all your enemies before you.
And I will make you famous like the great ones of the earth.
I will fix a place for my people Israel;
I will plant them so that they may dwell in their place
without further disturbance.
Neither shall the wicked continue to afflict them as they did of old,
since the time I first appointed judges over my people Israel.
I will give you rest from all your enemies.
The LORD also reveals to you that he will establish a house for you.
And when your time comes and you rest with your ancestors,
I will raise up your heir after you, sprung from your loins,
and I will make his Kingdom firm.
It is he who shall build a house for my name.
And I will make his royal throne firm forever.
I will be a father to him,
and he shall be a son to me.
And if he does wrong,
I will correct him with the rod of men
and with human chastisements;
but I will not withdraw my favor from him
as I withdrew it from your predecessor Saul,
whom I removed from my presence.
Your house and your kingdom shall endure forever before me;
your throne shall stand firm forever.’”

– The word of the Lord.

Responsorial Psalm (PSALM 89:4-5, 27-28, 29-30)

R.    (29a)  For ever I will maintain my love for my servant.
“I have made a covenant with my chosen one;
I have sworn to David my servant:
I will make your dynasty stand forever
and establish your throne through all ages.”
R.    For ever I will maintain my love for my servant.
“He shall cry to me, ‘You are my father,
my God, the Rock that brings me victory!’
I myself make him firstborn,
Most High over the kings of the earth.”
R.    For ever I will maintain my love for my servant.
“Forever I will maintain my love for him;
my covenant with him stands firm.
I will establish his dynasty forever,
his throne as the days of the heavens.”
R.    For ever I will maintain my love for my servant.

Alleluia

R. Alleluia, alleluia.
The seed is the word of God, Christ is the sower;
all who come to him will live for ever.
R. Alleluia, alleluia.

Gospel (MARK 4:1-20)

A reading from the Holy Gospel according to Mark

On another occasion, Jesus began to teach by the sea.
A very large crowd gathered around him
so that he got into a boat on the sea and sat down.
And the whole crowd was beside the sea on land.
And he taught them at length in parables,
and in the course of his instruction he said to them,
“Hear this! A sower went out to sow.
And as he sowed, some seed fell on the path,
and the birds came and ate it up.
Other seed fell on rocky ground where it had little soil.
It sprang up at once because the soil was not deep.
And when the sun rose, it was scorched and it withered for lack of roots.  
Some seed fell among thorns, and the thorns grew up and choked it
and it produced no grain.
And some seed fell on rich soil and produced fruit.
It came up and grew and yielded thirty, sixty, and a hundredfold.”
He added, “Whoever has ears to hear ought to hear.”

And when he was alone,
those present along with the Twelve
questioned him about the parables.
He answered them,
“The mystery of the Kingdom of God has been granted to you.
But to those outside everything comes in parables, so that
they may look and see but not perceive,
and hear and listen but not understand,
in order that they may not be converted and be forgiven.”

Jesus said to them, “Do you not understand this parable?
Then how will you understand any of the parables?
The sower sows the word.
These are the ones on the path where the word is sown.
As soon as they hear, Satan comes at once
and takes away the word sown in them.
And these are the ones sown on rocky ground who,
when they hear the word, receive it at once with joy.
But they have no roots; they last only for a time.
Then when tribulation or persecution comes because of the word,
they quickly fall away.
Those sown among thorns are another sort.
They are the people who hear the word,
but worldly anxiety, the lure of riches,
and the craving for other things intrude and choke the word,
and it bears no fruit.
But those sown on rich soil are the ones who hear the word and accept it
and bear fruit thirty and sixty and a hundredfold.”

– The Gospel of the Lord.

Reflection: The First Reading shows how King David honors the Ark of the Covenant, which the Lord has commanded Moses to build in order to store the Torah. He plans to build a house for the Ark to dwell. But then the Lord through the Prophet Nathan tells him that his son will build it. Later on David’s son, King Solomon, builds the first Temple in Jerusalem and consecrates it as a dwelling place of God. Moreover, the Lord has promised David that his dynasty would last forever by the greatest heir descending from his generation. This prophecy is fulfilled in the Father’s Only Begotten Son, our Lord Jesus Christ, who is the eternal King and Lord forever because of his obedience to the Father’s salvific plan for humanity. Such title has been granted to him as “the Son of David”. That is the Ark of the New Covenant because of his ratified interpretations of the Law by commanding us to love and our true reconcilition with God through his Paschal Mystery. The Gospel passage reminds us how important it is to listen to God’s word and obey it. The Parable of the Sower describes how Christ the Sower plants the seed of that word in different settings of life. Economically speaking, scattering seeds in anywhere shows wastefulness and lavishness of money. But for Christ, he scatters the seeds to show how every individual in whatever situation each one has will respond concretely to the Lord’s message. That is why the four backgrounds show reality of those who refuse to listen, those tempted to fall away though they have heard but not listened, those who cannot detach themselves from wordly desire cares that serve as excuses to listen, and those who thoroughly listened and applied God’s word to produce the abundance of spirituality. Therefore, let us be attentive to the word of God by listening to it and manifesting it in our daily lives. May we all merit the everlasting Kingdom in Heaven after showing our faithfulness before the Lord during our earthly life.

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