27th Week in Ordinary Time, Friday, Year II

Even the Jews of Paul’s time recognized that people who did not have a Jewish heritage were attracted to their religion, but they didn’t understand it exactly to mean that the blessings the Lord promised to Abraham were meant for more than the people of Israel. Some who “converted” to Judaism in Paul’s time would always be a second-class citizen because they were not blood descendants of Abraham. Paul refers to the blessings promised to and through Abraham in today’s First Reading and explains that to become a descendant of Abraham in the salvific sense all you needed was faith, not lineage.

Abraham was reckoned as righteous because of his faith, not because of his lineage. In the liturgy we refer Abraham as “our father in faith” for this very reason. Paul today is encouraging the Galatians to not treat themselves like second-class citizens. Through their faith in Christ they, and we, connect to that lineage of faith that brings salvation. The “law” to which Paul refers is religious practice done without faith in Christ, as we considered yesterday. Without the grace won by Christ the Jews were not able to persevere in their religious practices, and neither would we.

Our faith will help us weather anything, of we let it. Let’s ask Our Lord to help us grow in faith and stay a part of Abraham’s lineage of faith.

Readings: Galatians 3:7–14; Psalm 111:1b–6; Luke 11:15–26. See also 3rd Week of Lent, Thursday and 27th Week in Ordinary Time, Friday.