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Sunday, January 23, 2005

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3rd Sunday Ordinary Time

Isaiah 8:23—9:3
1 Corinthians 1:10-13, 17
Psalm 27
Matthew 4:12-23

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there's nobody like jesus

"Reform your lives! The kingdom of heaven is at hand." —Matthew 4:17

Jesus was walking along a part of the shore of the Sea of Galilee used by commercial fishing businesses. He commanded two brothers to follow Him and leave behind their business, livelihood, families, and the only way of life they had ever known. They obeyed Jesus' command immediately (Mt 4:20). That this was not a fluke is attested by the fact that Jesus did the same thing at another commercial fishing business and two other brothers also left everything to follow Jesus (Mt 4:22).

There is something special about Jesus. His words are "spirit and life" (Jn 6:63), and His actions are the most powerful. For example, He didn't simply cure some diseases, He "cured the people of every disease and illness" (Mt 4:23). Jesus spoke, did, and was the good news, that is, the gospel. Jesus inaugurated a whole, new way of governing life. He called it the kingdom of God (see Mt 4:23).

When Jesus was crucified and murdered, "the gospel of the kingdom" seemed to have been defeated. Yet Jesus rose on the third day and showed that His good news was stronger than death and that His kingdom would last forever. What are you waiting for? Follow Jesus and leave all else behind now.

Prayer:  Father, may I be madly in love with Jesus.

Promise:  "The people who walked in darkness have seen a great light; upon those who dwelt in the land of gloom a light has shone." —Is 9:1

Praise:  Praise the risen Jesus, the Light of life! (Jn 8:12)

Reference:  (For a related teaching, order our tape on Developing A Deep Personal Relationship with Jesus on audio AV 52-1 or video V-52.)

Nihil Obstat:  Reverend Richard Walling, July 7, 2004

Imprimatur:  †Most Reverend Carl K. Moeddel, Vicar General and Auxiliary Bishop of the Archdiocese of Cincinnati, July 19, 2004