"They tested Me though they had seen My works." —Psalm 95:9
At the midpoint of this season of Lent, today's Mass readings focus on testing. The Israelites tested God in the desert (Ps 95:9) with grumbling. Some, "to test [Jesus], were demanding of Him a sign from heaven" (Lk 11:16). Testing God is a dangerous and arrogant thing to do. Ananias and Sapphira wound up dead after their "scheme to put the Spirit of the Lord to the test" (Acts 5:9).
God is "the Tester of our hearts" (1 Thes 2:4), and we are the students. He uses our trials "to test [us] by affliction and find out whether or not it was [our] intention to keep His commandments" (Dt 8:2). For example, "God put Abraham to the test" (Gn 22:1). "Abraham, when put to the test" (Heb 11:17), was "ready" (Gn 22:1). He passed his exam with flying colors because he answered the test "by faith" (Heb 11:17). God even tested His own Son. Jesus was "tested through what He suffered," and so "He is able to help" us pass our test (Heb 2:18).
However, "no test has been sent you that does not come to all men. Besides, God keeps His promise. He will not let you be tested beyond your strength. Along with the test He will give you a way out of it so that you may be able to endure it" (1 Cor 10:13).
"Today, if you should hear His voice, harden not your hearts as...in the day of testing in the desert, when your fathers tested and tried" God (Heb 3:7-9). Instead, "test yourselves to see whether you are living in faith" (2 Cor 13:5).
Prayer: Father, grace me to prepare for the tests You give me by studying Your word daily (Acts 17:11).
Promise: "I have sent you untiringly all My servants the prophets." —Jer 7:25
Praise: Dawn's Bible study at work has expanded greatly over the years, resulting in many changed lives.
Reference: (This teaching was submitted by a member of our editorial team.)
Rescript: †Most Reverend Carl K. Moeddel, Vicar General and Auxiliary Bishop of the Archdiocese of Cincinnati, August 3, 2006 & September 18, 2006
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