Whoever comes to me, I will not cast out
By REV. FR. SAMUEL FREDERICK
Acts 8:1-8, Jn 6:35-40. After the death of Stephen, a storm of persecution broke out against the early Church in Jerusalem and increased in its fury. The prime agent in this campaign of persecution was Paul. As the floodgates of persecution opened against Christians, the focus shifted from Jerusalem to the other towns of Judea into Samaria. Providentially, the Spirit moved the Church outward and caused great joy as the early Christian communities continued to grow and flourish, spreading beyond the lands of Judea, Samaria and Galilee, except the Apostles. Today's first reading recounts how the Christians were forced to do what they had been reluctant to do – get the message of Jesus out to the surrounding regions. The resulting good of the spread of the Gospel leads some to see this persecution as being the will of God. God can and will use pressing circumstances to guide us into His will. Sometimes we have to be shaken out of our comfortable state before we do what God wants us to do.
Jesus Christ, who paid the wages of our sin, will not choose who may go out of their comfort zone and who will stay. He will usher us to the path leading to God. It is our choice to accept the gift that God has given us or accept other trivial choices. God will grant His promise of eternal life to whoever comes to Him through His Son Jesus Christ. In today's Gospel, Jesus referred to Himself as "the Bread of Life" and whoever eats of Him will have eternal life. Jesus further assures everyone who comes to Him eternal security: "All that the Father gives to me shall come to me. And whoever comes to me, I will not cast out." This means that He will not refuse to save anyone who comes to Him, no matter what the past have been. The past sins may have been very great, present weakness and infirmity may be outweighing but when turned to Christ, everlasting life awaits such. Christ will never allow any soul that is committed to Him to be lost and cast away. He will keep it safe, from grace to glory, in spite of the world, the flesh and the devil. Not one bone of His mystical body shall ever be broken. Not one lamb of His flock shall ever be left behind in the wilderness. He will raise to glory, in the last day, the whole flock entrusted to His charge and not one shall be found missing.
May the Lord look with kindness on us who hope for the resurrection, have mercy on us and keep us from all evil! Amen!! Good morning, it is well with you!!!