Print Version    Email to Friend
Eighth Sunday in ordinary time - There is only one master

Today’s Gospel, consists of a series of the Lord’s sayings directed false teachers who dilute the essence of the teachings of Jesus. It starts with a well-known proverb: “Can a blind person lead another blind person?” 
 
When the disciples told Jesus that the Pharisees were offended by his words he responds: “Pay no attention to them! They are blind leading the blind” (Matthew 15:14). In today’s passage the recipients of the Lord’s dramatic warning are not, however, neither the Pharisees nor the Jews, but the disciples themselves. Even for them, there is a danger of acting like blind guides.  They lead themselves and others into unrecoverable errors.
 
False Christian teachers can commit another error of believing that everything they think, say and do is wise, just and in conformity with the Gospel. They issue instructions in the name of Christ, with such security as to give the impression that they substituted the Master or are superior. They demand titles, privileges, honours, powers that even the Master never claims to have. 
 
To them, Jesus recalls another proverb: “A disciple is not above his master, but when fully trained he will be like his master.” 
 
Jesus warns us the danger of identifying our own ideas, beliefs, projects with God’s thoughts. It is a reckless presumption and thoughtless behave like masters when we are only mere disciples.
 
It is not over. These false teachers claim to themselves a right even more exorbitant than the above; they do something that Jesus himself never wanted to do (John 3:17): they judge, pronounce sentences against the brothers. For them, the parable of the speck and the log is told (vv. 41-42). 
 
It is an invitation to be wary of Christians who feel always right, always sure of what they say, teach and do. They do not realise that they have before in their eyes huge logs that prevent them from seeing the light. Which ones? Passions, envy, desire to rule over others, ignorance, fear, psychological disorders from which no mortal is completely exempted. All these are big “beams” that prevent to clearly grasp the demands of the word of God. 
 
We must take this into account and act humbly in a less presumptuous way, be less strict in imposing our vision of reality and less confident judging the others’ performance. 
 
If today we are forced to admit that on many occasions we have shown ourselves blind, we must be very cautious in judging, imposing our beliefs, and in condemning those who express different opinions. It may be that what we think is right, maybe it is truly evangelical. However, Jesus wants that the Christian proposal is made with great humility, with great discretion and respect and, above all, never judging those who cannot understand it, those who do not feel like accepting it. The possibility of having a log in front of the eyes is not remote and must not be forgotten! 
 
 
● Father Fernando Armellini SCJ
     Claretian Publications
     bibleclaret.org
Translated by Father John Ledesma SDB
Abridged by Father Jijo Kandamkulathy CMF