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Tuesday, February 7, 2012

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1 Kings 8:22-23, 27-30
Psalm 84:3-5, 10-11
Mark 7:1-13

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jesus, the ultimate traditionalist

"For example, Moses said..." —Mark 7:10

Christianity is based on divine traditions, that is, the handing on of what the Holy Spirit has revealed to God's people. The Bible itself is written to hand on some divine traditions (see 2 Thes 2:15). Therefore, without respect for tradition, the very basis of Christianity is undermined.

One of the main ways the devil tries to ruin our respect for tradition is by tempting us to place human traditions ahead of divine ones. He hopes we will react to this abuse by trying to throw out tradition instead of throwing out the abuse. Therefore, Jesus was very interested in showing religious leaders that they were disregarding God's commandments, which are divine traditions, and clinging "to what is human tradition" (Mk 7:8). Here Jesus was trying to guard the divine traditions expressed in the Bible from being set aside (Mk 7:9) or nullified (Mk 7:13) by merely human traditions. The devil tries to turn tradition against itself — to use human traditions to destroy divine ones. However, Jesus protects divine tradition from this attack. He is the divine Defender of divine tradition. Jesus is a Traditionalist in the ultimate sense.

Prayer:  Father, may I put divine tradition ahead of human tradition, including the tradition to attack tradition.

Promise:  "May Your eyes watch night and day over this temple, the place where You have decreed You shall be honored; may You heed the prayer which I, Your servant, offer in this place." —1 Kgs 8:29

Praise:  Cindy teaches her students the beauty of the traditions of the Church and the richness of the faith.

Reference:  (For a related teaching, order our tape on What is Tradition? on audio AV 77-1 or video V-77.)

Rescript:  †Most Reverend Joseph R. Binzer, Auxiliary Bishop, Vicar General of the Archdiocese of Cincinnati, July 29, 2011

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