"To be the Temple of God"
Homily for November 18, 2007
33rd SUNDAY IN ORDINARY TIME (33C)
By Fr. Romy Seleccion, MS
Let us take a second look at the gospel and discover
the real images that Jesus wanted to show us
when he predicted the destruction of the temple of Jerusalem.
The gospel started with these words:
While some people were speaking about how the temple
was adorned with costly stones and votive offerings,
Jesus said, “All that you see here – the days will come
when there will not be left a stone upon another stone
that will not be thrown down.”
Here, Jesus is referring to the temple as temple of stones;
a metaphor for people whose hearts are like stones.
People with this kind of hearts are prone to doing injustice,
to becoming destructive, proud and evil doers.
Also, Jesus said:
“… they will seize and persecute you…
You will even be handed over by parents, brothers,
relatives, and friends, and they will put some of you
to death. You will be hated by all because of my name,
but not a hair on your head will be destroyed. By
your perseverance you will secure your lives.”
Here, Jesus is referring to the temple as human beings;
an image of holy people with hearts of flesh.
People bearing these kinds of hearts are expected
to be loving, compassionate and just.
Now, we see the distinction of the two temples
described in our gospel today:
The TEMPLE MADE OF STONES as a people
with hardened hearts will vanish from the earth.
Jesus said: “the days will come where there will not be left
a stone upon another stone that will not be thrown down.”
The HUMAN BEING as a temple with a heart of flesh
will be saved and will experience the wonders of love.
Jesus said, “… not a hair on your head will be destroyed”.
From the words of Jesus, he revealed to us that the HUMAN PERSON
is worth dying for, than the BUILDING made of stones.
As HUMAN PERSONS gathered in this place of worship,
WE are the CHURCH that Christ dwells,
and he invites us to his table, and speaks to us words of eternal love.
St. Paul said: “Do you not know that you are God’s temple
And that God’s spirit dwells in you?”
We are more precious than the carpet, than the pews,
than the sound system, than the lights.
If Jesus lives in us, it is unbelievable then to hurt each other
and hate one another, because the Jesus in you,
and the Jesus in me will not permit that to happen.
The human person you destroy, you discriminate,
you reject, and you hate is the human face of God.
WE are the image and likeness of God.
WE are endangered species; we are SACRED!
It should be natural for us then to love and care for each other,
because the Jesus in our hearts will make it sure
that love overflows in our lives.
There was a man touched by Jesus’ love,
and he decided to be the temple of God, he said:
A long time ago, Jesus reached out his hand to bless me.
When he did, I looked at his hand. It was covered
with scratches and there is a hole in the middle of his palm.
Still, he reached out to me. Such is the hand of love.
It reminds me of how he stretched out his hands on the cross
because of me. Then he said, “not a hair of your head
will be destroyed. You will always be with me in paradise.”
Beloved friends, when you stretch out your hands
during the “Kiss of Peace”, please extend those hands
as if they are the hands of Jesus touching each one of you
with his unconditional love.
Today, do everything in your power
TO BE THE TEMPLE OF GOD!
God bless you all!
Fr. Romy Seleccion, MS
ParishWorld.net Sunday Homily Editor