Thursday of the Tenth Week in Ordinary Time
Life in the Kingdom of Heaven
I tell you, unless your righteousness surpasses that of the scribes and Pharisees, you will not enter into the kingdom of heaven. “You have heard that it was said to your ancestors, ‘You shall not kill; and whoever kills will be liable to judgment.’ But I say to you, whoever is angry with his brother will be liable to judgment, and whoever says to his brother, ‘Raqa,’ will be answerable to the Sanhedrin, and whoever says, ‘You fool,’ will be liable to fiery Gehenna. Therefore, if you bring your gift to the altar, and there recall that your brother has anything against you, leave your gift there at the altar, go first and be reconciled with your brother, and then come and offer your gift. Settle with your opponent quickly while on the way to court with him. Otherwise your opponent will hand you over to the judge, and the judge will hand you over to the guard, and you will be thrown into prison. Mt 5,20-25
The Kingdom of Heaven is a spiritual monarchy without boundaries: you enter it without a passport, you only need to respect articles in its Constitution. The first one requires to recognize Jesus of Nazareth as Lord and King, the second one provides that the relationship between citizens – who call each other brothers in the Kingdom – are set on the basis of love; the third one has decrees that the disputes will be settled through the practice of forgiveness. The kingdom of heaven, the Lord says today, does not include the scribes and Pharisees, because they do not accept the principles of the Constitution. In such a monarchy there are no selfishness and private property, but giving and sharing: “I was hungry and you gave me food, I was thirsty and you gave me drink”; and there are no bums, nor homeless people: “I was a stranger and you welcomed me”; there is no loneliness:”I was ill and you cared for me”; there is no marginalization: “I was in prison and you visited me” (Mt 25,31-39). Not only there is no crime in the Kingdom of Heaven, but, as the Gospel recommends today, no one is angry with anybody else or calls his brother crazy or stupid, because it is contrary to love and forgiveness. Since everyone feels loved and forgiven, not only there are no crimes: there is not even suicide. In the Kingdom of Heaven a language is spoken in which inappropriate words such as “stupid” or “crazy” do not even exist in the vocabulary. Moreover, there are neither rich nor poor people, because everyone feels as a privilege being able to provide the others with what he or she has and what he or she is. Here, finally, there is a common house, the temple, where the citizens come and pray every day, to praise the Lord and receive the Eucharist, which gives the strength and grace to live the reality of the communion of saints right today and on this earth.