Given that Ss Peter and Paul was celebrated yesterday, today’s first reading at Mass was Genesis 18:16-33. It deals with Abraham’s intercession before God for the offenses of the city of Sodom and Gomorrah. In my homily I mentioned that this passage teaches us about a Biblical norm for the right use of sexuality – i.e. between members of the opposite sex. The ancient city of Sodom and the practices of its inhabitants also gives rise to the word ‘sodomy’.
The first psalm in today’s Midday Office (Ps 18/19) speaks about the merit of a life lived in conformity with God’s laws.
The law of the Lord is spotless,
it refreshes the soul.
The teaching of the Lord can be trusted,
it gives wisdom to children.
The judgements of the Lord are right:
they give joy to the heart.
The precepts of the Lord are clear:
they give light to the eyes.
The fear of the Lord is pure:
it lasts through all ages.
The decrees of the Lord are true:
each one of them is just.
They are more desirable than gold,
than heaps of precious stones.
They are sweeter than honey,
than dripping honeycomb.
From them your servant learns;
keeping them brings rich rewards.
But who knows his own errors?
Save me from those I do not see.
Save me, your servant, from pride:
let it have no hold over me.
Then I will be spotless
washed clean of the gravest sin.
May the words of my mouth be pleasing
and the thoughts of my heart, in your sight.
O Lord, you are my helper,
O Lord, you are my redeemer.