Though They Fight Against You They Shall Not Prevail

man holding a black bible“When I found your words, I devoured them; they became my joy and the happiness of my heart.”  How beautiful are these words from the first reading for Mass, from the book of the prophet Jeremiah.  The scriptures truly are living words.  So many people have felt the same way about them, throughout the centuries.  They are a treasure, yet to be discovered.  Just like the buried treasure in the field that Jesus talked about in today’s gospel, or the pearl of great price that a merchant spends years looking for.  There are so many people throughout the ages that have looked for the truth in these words, and found it.

Like any beautiful thing though, it can be twisted and perverted into something that God never meant it to be.  Evil is the perversion of truth.  A good thing can be twisted into something that is bad, for a person(s) own motives.

That is what happened to the prophet Jeremiah in today’s first reading for Mass.  He loved the scriptures with all of his heart.  It was a genuine love.  This reading says that he ‘devoured them’ and they became the joy and happiness of his heart.  God’s words were more precious to him than gold.  This verse quotes Jeremiah saying, “I neither borrow nor lend”.

Because of the fact that Jeremiah had come to love God with all of his heart, and all of his mind, and with all of his life, he was persecuted by his own people.  They turned against him.  Jeremiah told God that, “You have indeed become for me a treacherous brook, whose waters do not abide!”

The problem with Jeremiah is that he spoke God’s Word with vile, with contempt for others.  He took something good and twisted it into something evil.  God’s words are good and were never meant to be used as a weapon.  It is wrong to use God’s words to inflict damage on other people.

God’s words are meant to bring about change in others through love.  His words are holy and to use them for any other purpose, is to dishonor them.  It is wrong to take something good and use it for an evil purpose or to hurt another person.

Our words are not the same as God’s words.  What we say to others is one thing, and to err is human.  But, to use God’s words against another person, for the purpose of hurting them, is morally wrong.

God said if this happens to us, then don’t worry about it.  He will take care of them, Himself:

“Though they fight against you they shall not prevail,  for I am with you, to deliver and rescue you, says the Lord.  I will free you from the hand of the wicked, and rescue you from the grasp of the violent.”

May we always respect and honor God’s Word, and never use His word to hurt other people with.  If others hurt us by using God’s Word against us, then we should just let it rest, knowing that the situation is in God’s hands, and He will take care of it.



Daily Mass Readings:

Jeremiah 15: 10, 16-21 / Psalm 59 / Matthew 13: 44-46

About the Author

Welcome to A Catholic Moment! My name is Laura Kazlas and I’m the creator and founder of A Catholic Moment. Catholics read a lot of different things on the internet these days, but this website is a place for Catholics to read, reflect, and discuss the daily readings for Mass. Our website is run entirely by a group of volunteer writers who have a genuine love for the scriptures that we have for Mass each day. I was personally raised by atheists, but came to believe in God and was baptized because of the words in sacred scripture. I later became a Catholic because of the Mass. The first time my husband took me to Mass, I thought it was the most holy, beautiful sense of worshiping God that I had ever experienced. I still do. My husband John and I have been married for 30 years. We have a son, a daughter, two granddaughters, and a cat. I currently serve as the coordinator of Catholic prison ministry in the Archdiocese of Portland Oregon, in the USA.

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  1. As written in 2Tim 3:16, “All Scripture is inspired by God and profitable for teaching, for reproof, for correction, for training in righteousness;”.
    Many times, unwittingly, when we quote scriptures, people get hurt or we hurt people.

    Also as written in in Heb 4:12, “For the word of God is living and active and sharper than any two-edged sword, and piercing as far as the division of soul and spirit, of both joints and marrow, and able to judge the thoughts and intentions of the heart.”

    As in the former, we can possibly hurt people though unwittingly when we use and proclaim God’s word.

    I think that is one of the effects of the word of God; it convicts and the initial reaction from the conviction is hurt – unless one is truly meek and humble like the Lord Jesus.

  2. You do have a very good point. Thank you. You are right. We can hurt people without meaning to. The scriptures themselves can hurt too, if they are true. There are some people (protestants or Catholics) who use the scriptures too harshly during their efforts at defending the faith sometimes too though. But, you are right. Sometimes it may be our own conscience bothering us.

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