Posted August 26, 2013 by FLL Editorial Team in
 
 

Woe to you, scribes and Pharisees

那時,耶穌對民眾和他的門徒說:「禍哉,你們經師和法利塞假善人!因為你們給人封閉了天國:你們不進去,也不讓願意進去的人進去。

【禍哉,你們經師和法利塞假善人!因為你們吞沒了寡婦的家產,而以長久的祈禱作掩飾,為此,你們必要遭受更重的處罰。】

禍哉,你們經師和法利塞假善人!因為你們走遍了海洋和陸地,為使一個人成為歸依者;幾時他成了,你們反而使他成為一個比你們加倍壞的『地獄之子』。

禍哉,你們瞎眼的嚮導!你們說:誰若指著聖所起誓,不算什麼;但是誰若指著聖所的金子起誓,就該還願。又昏又瞎的人哪!究竟什麼更貴重:是金子或是那使金子成聖的聖所?還有:誰若指著全燔祭壇起誓,不算什麼;但是誰若指著那上面的供物起誓,就該還願。瞎眼的人哪!究竟什麼更貴重:是供物或是那使供物成聖的全燔祭壇?所以,那指著全燔祭壇起誓的,是指著它和那上面的一切起誓;那指著聖所起誓的,是指著它和那住在它內的而起誓;那指著天起誓的,是指著天主的寶座和坐在上面的那位起誓。」
瑪竇福音 23:13-22

Brooklyn_Museum_-_Woe_unto_You,_Scribes_and_Pharisees_(Malheur_à_vous,_scribes_et_pharisiens)_-_James_Tissot
在今天和未來兩天的福音,耶穌指責經師和法利塞人七次,人們稱為「七禍哉」。今天福音記載了首三項。

耶穌首先指責他們:「禍哉,你們經師和法利塞假善人!因為你們給人封閉了天國:你們不進去,也不讓願意進去的人進去。」我們可從兩方面理解耶穌的話。一方面這是指經師和法利塞人拒絕耶穌,而祂本身就是天國的化身。祂宣講天國,藉著祂,所有願意的人都有機會進入天國。另一方面,經師們把律法詮譯得很複雜,令守律法變得近乎不可能。不論我們是父母、教師、神父或修女,我們也要檢討自己的行為有否阻礙別人走近耶穌,而自己也遠離祂。

耶穌然後指責他們:「你們走遍了海洋和陸地,為使一個人成為歸依者;幾時他成了,你們反而使他成為一個比你們加倍壞的『地獄之子』」這是指經師和法利塞人熱心歸化僑居在外的猶太人皈依猶太宗教。但他們卻向皈依者灌輸了錯誤訊息,使他們只注重形式和禮儀而不明白如何做才能得救。

耶穌再指責經師和法利塞人教導人指著聖所、全燔祭壇所起的誓不算,但指著上面的金子、供物就算數。他們本末倒置,只注視金子和供物,更不明白發誓的真義,是出於人對天主的信仰。我們要注意別讓物質成為阻礙別人接近天主的絆腳石。

Jesus said to the crowds and to his disciples: “Woe to you, scribes and Pharisees, you hypocrites. You lock the Kingdom of heaven before men. You do not enter yourselves, nor do you allow entrance to those trying to enter.

“Woe to you, scribes and Pharisees, you hypocrites. You traverse sea and land to make one convert, and when that happens you make him a child of Gehenna twice as much as yourselves.

“Woe to you, blind guides, who say, ‘If one swears by the temple, it means nothing, but if one swears by the gold of the temple, one is obligated.’ Blind fools, which is greater, the gold, or the temple that made the gold sacred? And you say, ‘If one swears by the altar, it means nothing, but if one swears by the gift on the altar, one is obligated.’ You blind ones, which is greater, the gift, or the altar that makes the gift sacred? One who swears by the altar swears by it and all that is upon it; one who swears by the temple swears by it and by him who dwells in it; one who swears by heaven swears by the throne of God and by him who is seated on it.”

Matthew 23:13-22

Today and for the following two days, we read of the seven “Woes” that Jesus said against the Pharisees and scribes. Today’s Gospel covers the first three.

Jesus first accused them: “You lock the Kingdom of heaven before men. You do not enter yourselves, nor do you allow entrance to those trying to enter.” This can be a reference to their rejection of Jesus who was himself the embodiment of the Kingdom, was preaching the Kingdom and who, by his presence, had made the Kingdom accessible to all who came to him. On the other, it can also mean that they made the observance of the Law impossibly difficult by their complex interpretations of what was and was not allowed. Whether we are parents, or teachers, or priests or religious, we can also by our behaviour both block people’s access to Jesus and be far from him ourselves also.

Jesus then accused them: “You traverse sea and land to make one convert, and when that happens you make him a child of Gehenna twice as much as yourselves.” This refers to them zealously convert Jews who lived elsewhere to believe in Judaism. But they corrupt them with false ideas of what true religion is, causing them to mistake rituals as what really brings about salvation.

Jesus also accused them of teaching people that swearing by the temple or the altar means nothing, but swearing by the gold of the temple and the gift on the altar is obligated. They focused only on material gains. They misunderstood swearing before God is based on people’s faith for God. We have to watch out and not to let material gains become a stumbling block to the hearing of the Gospel.


FLL Editorial Team