Mk 9:41-50 A Little Word Called Honor
“Better for him if a great millstone were put around his neck and he were thrown into the sea.”
These are pretty harsh words from our warm and fuzzy Jesus. Some time ago I received a letter from someone who did not approve of a talk I gave with regards to a hot-button issue. This person reminded me of how the Lord was gentle and tolerant. Really? I wonder if this person ever took the time to read the Gospels! In today’s Gospel, the Lord is clear and direct: there is a justice, there is a judgment and there is a Hell. We must do whatever it takes to get to Heaven. Better to crawl into Heaven then to walk into Hell. It is better to cut off the sinning member of your body rather than to lose heaven over one eye, ear, tongue or foot. It is very important that we reign in our passions; otherwise, we lose that which the Lord is forever passionate about.
We want to change the Commandments, but they will never change. We want them to be easier, but the pains and consequences of ignoring them are far worse than following them. We want them to be easier. Why? So we can ease people into Hell?
The Lord’s words are not barbaric, rudimentary, uncivilized, crude, immoral, or unwise. They are sanitary, healthy, loving, warm and personal. They are the truth and we should not doubt His brotherly advice to us, His beloved brothers and sisters. Far too many of us fear not the fire but the words and prefer to throw water not over the fire but over the fire-fighter! We prefer to kill the messenger rather than to look out the window and see the approaching enemy.
Just recently I read an article, conveniently lost in cyber-space and therefore hardly known and barely read, about the dangers of oral sex. Researchers found a 225% increase in oral cancer cases in the U.S. from 1974 to 2007. The conclusion: the more oral-sex partners, the greater the risk of oral cancer. Immediately what comes to my mind is the following: We are not animals. We are called to a higher calling. Sex must go hand in hand with love, fidelity, commitment and vows.
We know what will be the result of this study: We need to find a vaccine!!! We need to begin vaccinations for these types of sexually transmitted diseases starting at the age of twelve - no ten! This is always our solution. This is always our solution: A shot rather than a Scroll. We should be demanding best rather than settling for mediocrity. There are so many other illnesses that come from multiple partners that are not physical or even detectable but that penetrate deep into the heart and soul of an individual that no shot could ever reach. Will we ever learn? Do we understand what we are talking about? Our moral collapses manifest themselves in more than just a physical way. Something that the Lord spoke to us about, “Whoever causes one of these little ones who believe in me to sin, it would be better for him if a great millstone were put around his neck and he were thrown into the sea.”
We have an obligation, regardless of whether or not we are laughed off the stage; and we are called to fulfill it. The Lord has called upon us to speak the truth and to die for it.
“Keep salt in yourselves and you will have peace."