3 Then Abram fell on his face; and God said to him, 4 “Behold, my covenant is with you, and you shall be the father of a multitude of nations. 5 No longer shall your name be Abram, but your name shall be Abraham; for I have made you the father of a multitude of nations.
6 I will make you exceedingly fruitful; and I will make nations of you, and kings shall come forth from you. 7 And I will establish my covenant between me and you and your descendants after you throughout their generations for an everlasting covenant, to be God to you and to your descendants after you.
8 And I will give to you, and to your descendants after you, the land of your sojournings, all the land of Canaan, for an everlasting possession; and I will be their God.” 9 And God said to Abraham, “As for you, you shall keep my covenant, you and your descendants after you throughout their generations.
51 Truly, truly, I say to you, if any one keeps my word, he will never see death.”
52 The Jews said to him, “Now we know that you have a demon. Abraham died, as did the prophets; and you say, ‘If any one keeps my word, he will never taste death.’
53 Are you greater than our father Abraham, who died? And the prophets died! Who do you claim to be?” 54 Jesus answered, “If I glorify myself, my glory is nothing; it is my Father who glorifies me, of whom you say that he is your God.
55 But you have not known him; I know him. If I said, I do not know him, I should be a liar like you; but I do know him and I keep his word.
56 Your father Abraham rejoiced that he was to see my day; he saw it and was glad.” 57 The Jews then said to him, “You are not yet fifty years old, and have you seen Abraham?” 58 Jesus said to them, “Truly, truly, I say to you, before Abraham was, I am.” 59 So they took up stones to throw at him; but Jesus hid himself, and went out of the temple.
THE FIRST READING: Some six years after the birth of Ismael the first son of Abraham begotten from his Egyptian maid Hagar, God appeared to him to establish a new covenant. Lying prostrate before God, Abram is given a new, name Abraham, which imply that he has a new calling or vocation to be ‘the father of many!’ This new calling of Abraham require that he and his descendents keep and obey God’s Covenants.
THE GOSPEL READING: Jesus’ interlocutors points to the deaths of Abraham and the prophets to dismiss Christs proposition that they will not die, if they accept and apply His message of salvation.These men even accused Christ of being demon possessed, when He asserted that He met with Abraham, who rejoiced in His revelation! Jesus accuse his audience as being liars, because that they are wilfully gnorant about their calling to follow the Abrahamic way of life. When Jesus finally revealed that He antecede Abraham, these men took up stones to take kill Jesus!
At our baptism you and I were made members of the body and inducted into the Abrahamic religion. Included in the sacred ceremony of baptism our parents were asked what we want from the Church, and what name we give our child—hopefully it was a name of a holy biblical figure or that of a venerated Catholic saint—who lived out their vocation to follow Christ and uphold the teachings of the Church without question! It is the constant prayer of the Church that we seek the intercession of our baptismal saint whilst we submit to Christ and His Church during our earthly journey. Any wilful evil act that contradicts our Sacramental vows can be said to be an act of stoning Christ Jesus.
LET US PRAY: Psalms 105:4-9
4 Seek the LORD and his strength, seek his presence continually! 5 Remember the wonderful works that he has done, his miracles, and the judgments he uttered,
6 O offspring of Abraham his servant, sons of Jacob, his chosen ones!
7 He is the LORD our God; his judgments are in all the earth. 8 He is mindful of his covenant for ever, of the word that he commanded, for a thousand generations,
9 the covenant which he made with Abraham, his sworn promise to Isaac,
Commentary. Henry R SYLVESTER Note: The daily scripture readings are taken from the Roman Missal which the Catholic Church use in the daily Celebration of the Holy Eucharist throughout the world.Some weekly readings may differ because of the celebration of local feast days.