Tue, 11 February 2020
(1Kgs.10:1-10; Ps.37:5-6,30-31,39-40; Mk.7:14-23)
“The mouth of the just man tells of wisdom
and his tongue utters what is right.”
Today in our readings we have a passage to illustrate the great extent of the wisdom and riches of King Solomon. “The queen of Sheba, having heard of Solomon’s fame, [comes] to test him with subtle questions.” She had not believed the report she’d heard of him, but having “witnessed Solomon’s great wisdom” in the answers he gave to every one of her questions – “nothing remained hidden from him that he could not explain to her” – and having seen “the palace he had built” and all the amenities that surrounded him… “she was breathless.” And rightly does this pagan queen attribute the blessings Solomon enjoys to the Lord, who “has made [him] king to carry out judgment and justice.”
How true it is that the Lord blesses him who holds “the law of God in his heart.” And rightly does David declare in our psalm that if we “commit to the Lord [our] way… He will make justice dawn for [us] like the light.” We shall shine “bright as the noonday,” bright as Solomon’s temple, if we “trust in Him.” If Solomon’s servants were happy, how much happier should we be to “stand before [the Lord] always and listen to [His] wisdom.” For having eaten at the table of such grace and glory, what could come from our mouths but the same? And what shall we be called then but wise men?
But the same mouth which utters wisdom may also utter evil. For though the good man from the treasure of his heart speaks only good, it is also so that “wicked designs come from the deep recesses of the heart” as well. Here one may find murderous plots and malicious intent. We shall find soon that Solomon’s heart will change and that what “emerges from within” him will bear little likeness to wisdom. And so, should we not all heed the Lord’s words of warning in our gospel today and take care what comes from within our hearts, that we ourselves are not rendered “impure”? Let the wisdom of the Lord and His holiness always issue forth from our hearts in all our words and actions. Then we shall know the blessings of the eternal King.
O LORD, make us pure;
make us wise according to your ways.
YHWH, what comes from our heart? Does it condemn us or show us wise? Do we trust in you and so commit our way in keeping with your own, or do we follow the wiles of this wicked world? We need all look within ourselves to see if you are present there.
Be with us, LORD; let us be blessed by you. It is from you we find anything of worth. At your hand we receive our food, and it is your mouth that teaches us. Help us to hear the words of your Son, the chastisement He brings to our souls. Let us eat this day of His Body and His Blood. Only this food will sustain us. Only His words give us life. Help us open our hearts to the wisdom He utters and so find our place at His table.
You are our salvation, LORD, delivering us from all evil. Let us speak of your glory to all with ears. May our lives be pleasing to you this day.