In this reading the Lord warns all of us to beware of wolves in sheep clothing and not to be fooled by the outward appearance those who are evil. Time and time again we are warned about hypocrites and two faced people.
He tells us that we will know the hypocrites by the fruits that they bear. A good tree cannot bear bad fruit and vice versa. What is Christ trying to teach us?
I think that he is teaching us how to guard ourselves against hypocrites and evil doers, but most of all I think that he is teaching us more about ourselves.
A bad tree cannot bear good fruit. In this analogy we are being compared to trees and our works are refered to as fruit. What makes us good is not simply the works we preform day in and day out, but they are the intentions by which our works are done.
You are a good person if you are moral, no evil can be done so that a good may come of it. That means you are not a morally good person if you cheat on your taxes to be able to afford any good, be it education, bills, or charity.
I think that Christ is calling us to amend our own lives when he speaks of the fruit tree because he immediately begins chastising those who speak love to their neighbors, but have evil in their hearts.
The hypocrites will call out to him, “Lord, Lord!” and he will dismiss them from his very presence. They will call out to him naming all of the deeds they have done, and his response will be, “I never knew you; depart from me, you evildoers.”
The reason for this seaming harsh saying is because, as Christ explains next, the foundation that these evil ones chose to build on rejected the cornerstone–that is Christ himself. Their inward dispositions, their intentions, were evil because Christ was not in their hearts.
These evil men and women will be judged and fall. They were void of Christ and full of themselves. You, however, do good with the Lord Jesus Christ at the foundation of your will.
Readings: Second Sunday of Sawma
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