6th Sunday of the Pentecost 16- I am sending you out like sheep among wolves. Therefore be as shrewd as snakes and as innocent as doves. 17- "Be on your guard against men; they will hand you over to the local councils and flog you in their synagogues. 18- On my account you will be brought before governors and kings as witnesses to them and to the Gentiles. 19- But when they arrest you, do not worry about what to say or how to say it. At that time you will be given what to say, 20- for it will not be you speaking, but the Spirit of your Father speaking through you. 20- "Brother will betray brother to death, and a father his child; children will rebel against their parents and have them put to death. 22- All men will hate you because of me, but he who stands firm to the end will be saved. 23- When you are persecuted in one place, flee to another. I tell you the truth, you will not finish going through the cities of Israel before the Son of Man comes. 24- "A student is not above his teacher, nor a servant above his master. 25- It is enough for the student to be like his teacher, and the servant like his master. If the head of the house has been called Beelzebub,[c] how much more the members of his household! Meditation about the sixth Sunday of the Pentecost
The words of the sixth Sunday of the Pentecost are taken from the “sermon of the mission” in Matthew’s Gospel where Jesus gives his instructions and his recommendations to his disciples. However, even if these words are addressed to the disciples, they reach each believer at any time. It suffices to activate them in the current life of each one of us in order to draw life.
1- The reality of the Christian predication
Jesus says to his disciples, “Behold, I am sending you as sheep in the midst of wolves, so be wise as serpents and innocent as doves”. These words may be applied on us as well and they reveal undoubtedly the reality of the Christian life. It is a life lived among its environment and does not like to escape from it. This may be an echo for the Word of Jesus in the Gospel of John, “I do not ask to take them out of the world but that you keep them from the evil one” (John 17/15). Wisdom as well as innocence are the two virtues asked by Jesus to his disciples, thus he reveals that the Christian life enjoys a great reality which is lived in the daily life and which is adapted according to the situation without haggling with faith and its essence.
2- The persecution
The words of Jesus imply that prediction is surrounded by persecution. The concrete persecution may be the fact of Christians during the first century and in many places nowadays. However it is not the case in the majority of times and in our current life. Many are the Christians who are not persecuted because of their faith and their predication. But the believer, who listens to the Word of Jesus, understands that there are many things in life that hinder faith and take man away from his life with God. This is certainly persecution of faith. The words of Jesus are related directly to the declaration of predication but we can apply them undoubtedly on ourselves by living faith because the one who declares the predication is asked to hold it in him in the first place. Then, the Word of Jesus shines in our mind: he sent us and recommended us to be supplied with wisdom and innocence. This means that in front of everything in life, in front of material and authoritarian temptations, the temptations of wealth, envy, hate and meanness against others, in front of disease, disaster or unhappiness we have to take a straight attitude marked by wisdom and innocence. We will be attached then to our faith and we will realize that in Him only a life is guaranteed. Thus we can talk of what is proper to our life and we will hang on to it and then it is the Holy Spirit who will speak through you, as Jesus said.
Conclusion The Gospel of today is a moral for us which learns us to make the words of Jesus linked directly to our current life even if some people consider that they are words related to a particular situation of the past. The words of Jesus in the Gospel are those of God addressed to us at any time and any place. We are asked to find out their significance and apply them in our personal life as well as in that of the group. In this case we will have life, an abundant life.