Beset is an interesting word that we do not use very often. The first reading we overhear a conversation among people who do not like someone. This person is called just, a righteous person. This means this person is good and honest. But the people do not like him. This good person does not do the evil deeds others do. This good person tells the people they were not trained to do evil but to do good. The evil people now try to trick God. By attacking the good person, they claim God will protect him. They will torture the good person and kill him. What kind of evil people are they that want to murder a good person?
Jesus already knows who the evil people are who will kill Him. In the gospel, He is trying to warn His disciples of the impending danger. But the disciples are not listening. Perhaps they do not want to listen. When someone tells you about danger or something bad is about to happen to you, do you want to hear about it? The disciples did not want to listen. They were behaving rather selfishly. Their discussion was focused on who of the disciples is the greatest. I imagine having seen the miracles of Jesus they would be concerned who Jesus would choose to be their leader. They all wanted to be the leader. They were expressing their qualifications when Jesus told them to be qualified, they must be like a little child. In their culture, a child had no dignity or worth. What a shock! They must be like little children?
The disciples have been with Jesus for some time. They have listened to His words. They have seen His healings and casting out demons. Or they have seen but did not see; they have heard but did not hear. In their selfishness they have only seen vainglory and worthless honor for themselves. In all that Jesus said and did we must remember He is the humble servant. He came to serve, not to be served. In the end, the evil people will kill Jesus, but they will not conquer. Rather, the death of Jesus conquers death for all time. Jesus restores us to eternal life with Him. Evil is defeated.
Even though evil has been defeated, God allows evil to exist in this world. We are to turn to God and trust in Him. Knowing that God will take care of us. Look at your life today. Are you entrapped by all the media? Is your life full of anger and hatred? Do you allow selfishness to rule your life? To be truly happy we need to reach out and serve those less fortunate than we are. Whether we are at work, at school, or at home, our spirit of service will bring peace and happiness to others in how we serve them. In turn our service to others answers the call of Jesus, filling us with His blessings and grace. Be sensitive to those around you. Who could you serve as Jesus serves?
May the Lord bless you in the name of the Father, and of the Son, and of the Holy Spirit. Amen