Psalm 113: 1-2, 4-6, 7-8 (Read)
that our God, who is at once exalted above all men, is willing to stoop low
and to raise us up to His own level.
God reverses common wisdom,
and we who are called His servants
are lifted up out of the dung heap
of life and treated as royalty in His kingdom.
“Who is like the Lord, our God, who is enthroned
on high and looks upon the heavens and the earth
below.” It is God's nature to seek out the lowly
and the afflicted ones of this world, and who is to say
that we are not all afflicted?
Christ Jesus shows an amazing ability to bring up
to His level the outcast of society – the poor, the
lowly, the barren. Often criticized for eating and
drinking with sinners, our Savior shows us how
to behave toward our neighbors, to understand
the it is the sick who need a physician.
Jesus' behavior is in sharp contrast to the conduct
of the merchants described in Sunday's first reading
(Amos 8: 4-7). They have undisguised contempt for
the poor whom they are exploiting. But Jesus
reminds us that the poor have a divine and powerful
advocate. The compassion of our Lord reaches
down to those whom the powerful of the earth regard
as nothing. Jesus devotes his spiritual wealth and
loving attention not to those who can give something
in return, but to those whom the world disregards.
With such a loving God in our midst, we are inspired
to become like Him, and to join with our psalmist and
sing praise to our God, and praise his name.
Discussion Questions for Reflection
1. Our Psalm reminds us that the Lord on high reaches down to our human level to lift us up. How can it be that our God, who is exalted above all nations, is willing to stoop to our lowly level and show concern for us?
2. What does it mean when our psalmist says that God raises up the lowly from the dust and seats them with princes?