3rd week in Lent, Thursday – 16th March 2023 – Jeremiah 7,23-28; Lk 11,14-23
State of Regress
In the first reading, Jeremiah is told by the Lord that even though he and the other prophets have tried to get His Chosen people on the right track, they have chosen to go another way. Instead of turning their faces to God, they have turned their backs to God and are heading away from God. Therefore, he makes strong statements about how God’s people do not listen to his words. The covenant was, “Listen to my voice, then I will be your God and you shall be my people. Follow right to the end the way that I mark out for you, and you will prosper.” But that did not happen because “they followed the dictates of their own evil hearts, refused to face me, and turned their backs on me.” In the wilderness, God did not request sacrifices and oblations from the Israelites rather simple obedience. They were asked to walk in the way of righteousness and God’s command. Instead, the chosen people in Jeremiah’s time never hearkened God’s words; they despised His counsels; they walked in the imaginations of their evil heart and they went backward and not forward. Hence, instead of becoming more wise, obedient, and holy, they grew more corrupt; so that they became more reckless than their fathers. Morally and spiritually, they were in a state of regress, not in progress.