Fifteenth Sunday in Ordinary Time

His Word Achieves His Purpose in Everyman

Just as from the heavens
The rain and snow come down
And do not return there
til they have watered the earth
making it fertile and fruitful….

So shall my word be
that goes forth from my mouth;
My word shall not return to me void
but shall do my will,
achieving the end for which I sent it.

Isaiah 55:10–11

The word that goes forth from God into the world is His dabar in Hebrew, the Logos of John 1:1–14 through whom all things were made, the light that lighteneth every man coming into the world.  The Word, because it is the expressed purpose of the Father is indefectible. The divine will it expresses has as its purpose not only the sustaining of creation, but the achieving of the divine purpose for mankind, which was and is to bring the rational creatures He made in the beginning, now fallen, into His presence so that they may share in the eternal symphony of praise and thanksgiving,, of ever more prefect knowledge of Him, for which knowledge they were intended, and that not a disembodied spirit but resurrected to the life of Glory in the Son. 

          The means through which God achieves this purpose are His providence and His predestining love.   Saint Thomas says: “Predestination necessarily presupposes election and election presupposes love.”    In Athens the elect or chosen representatives were called into the governing assembly, which in the Christian transposition means being called by God’s love into His presence,.  The word Church is the Germanic rendering of elect or chosen, cognate with Kirche, which in southern languages is the Spanish iglesia and French église. 

          Saint Thomas continues: 

The reason for this is that predestination, as was stated above, is part of providence. Now providence, as also prudence, is the plan existing in the intellect directing something toward an end.   But nothing is directed toward an end unless the will for that end already exists. Whence predestination to eternal salvation logically presupposes that God wills their salvation and to this belongs both election and love.   His will, by which in loving He wishes good to someone, is the cause of that good possessed by some in preference to others (Summa Theologica, Question 23, Article 4).

This is the thirteenth century reading of Saint Paul:  “For to them that love God, all things work together unto good, to such as according to His purpose, are called to be saints. And whom He foreknew He also predestined to be made conformable to the image of His Son. . . . “(Romans 8:28–29). Continue reading “Fifteenth Sunday in Ordinary Time”