Feast of St. Mathias, the Apostle. Bible Study: Acts 1:15-26, Psalm 113 and John 15:9-17
“You did not choose me, but I chose you and appointed you that you should go and bear fruit and that your fruit should abide; so that whatever you ask the Father in my name, he may give it to you. This I command you, to love one another” (John 15:16-17).
Judas Iscariot, like the other disciples, was chosen by Jesus but in the end, he betrayed Jesus and took his own life. In truth, God who made you and chose you without your permission will not save you without your cooperation. Jesus says we have been chosen; chosen to keep his commandments, chosen to bear fruits – fruits that will last. Above all, our fruitfulness is hinged on our love for one another.
The election of Saint Mathias whose feast we celebrate today teaches us a very important lesson: no matter how good we think we are, there would always be someone who can take our place and even do the job better. Avoid pride.
Another lesson we learn from this election is to always consult God in prayer. “And they prayed and said, ‘Lord who knows the hearts of all men, show us which one of these two you have chosen to take the place in this ministry and apostleship from Judas turned aside, to go to his own place” (Acts 1:24-25). They prayed; they were not carried away by dirty politics.
The third lesson we learn from the election of Mathias is the importance of building the right relationships. Both Mathias and Joseph Justus were friends to the Apostles. As Peter noted: “So one of the men who has accompanied us during all the time that the Lord Jesus went in and out among us, beginning from the baptism of John until the day when he was taken up from us - one of these men must become with us a witness to his resurrection” (Acts 1:21-22). The kind of friends you keep could determine your future.
According to Wikipedia, St. Matthias planted the faith in Cappadocia and on the coasts of the Caspian Sea, residing chiefly near the port Issus. The Synopsis of Dorotheus contains this tradition: “Matthias preached the Gospel to barbarians and meat-eaters in the interior of Ethiopia, where the sea harbour of Hyssus is, at the mouth of the river Phasis. He died at Sebastopolis, and was buried there, near the Temple of the Sun.” Another tradition maintains that Matthias was stoned at Jerusalem by the Jews, and then beheaded.
Let us pray: Lord Jesus, like St. Mathias may I use my gifts and opportunities in life according to your good pleasure. Amen.
Be Happy. Live Positive. Have Faith. It is well with you. God bless you.