Thought of the day
Sunday, October 30, 2016

Thirty-first Sunday in Ordinary Time - Year C

Commentary of the day Philoxenes of Mabbug (?-c.523), Bishop in Syria Homily 4, 78-80 (trans. SC 44, p.97) Zacchaeus discovers the only true good

Thirty-first Sunday in Ordinary Time - Year C

Commentary of the day 
Philoxenes of Mabbug (?-c.523), Bishop in Syria 
Homily 4, 78-80 (trans. SC 44, p.97)
Zacchaeus discovers the only true good

Our Lord called Zacchaeus out of the sycamore into which he had climbed and, at once, Zacchaeus made haste to come down and welcome him into his house. This is because, even before he had been called, he had hoped to see him and become his disciple. It is something worth admiring that he believed in him before Our Lord had ever spoken to him and before he had seen him with his bodily eyes but merely on the word of others. The faith within him had been kept safe within his ordinary life and soundness of mind. And this faith was made known when he believed in Our Lord at the very moment of learning of his coming. The simplicity of his faith was apparent when he promised to give the half of his goods to the poor and to pay back fourfold whatever he had unjustly taken. 

Indeed, if Zacchaeus’ mind had not been filled at that moment with the simplicity that belongs to faith, he could not have made that promise to Jesus and could not have spent and handed over in so little time what he had acquired in so many years of work. Simplicity handed out on all sides what cunning had gathered; purity of soul scattered abroad what duplicity had acquired; and faith renounced what injustice had obtained and possessed and it declared that these things were not its own. 

For faith, God is its only good and it refuses to possess any other good together with him. Where faith is concerned, all possessions are of little importance besides that one lasting good which is God. We have taken faith to ourselves so as to find God and possess nothing but Him so that we might see that anything besides of Him is of no value.