June 12, 2016

There were some interesting conceptions of sin prevalent in the time of the Hebrew scriptures. There was the belief that God punished sin immediately. Those who suffered disease or misfortune were, therefore, sinners getting their due from the Almighty.

Today’s first reading hints at another kind of God. When David admits his sin, Nathan declares, “The Lord on his part has forgiven your sin” (2 Samuel 12:13b). Here was not a vengeful God but a merciful God. What good news that must have been to David and those who, like him, could be honest enough to admit their sinfulness!

Jesus is the good news of God’s mercy and forgiveness incarnate. Without Jesus, perhaps the good news would have been too good to believe, too difficult to imagine. But there he is in today’s Gospel, the God-man, forgiving a sinner and declaring that she is forgiven because of her great love.

There is hope, then, for the rest of us sinners, if only we love enough!


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