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Jesus' words are words of warning today, and Saint Paul gives the same. They are words that are meant to humble us and remind us of the truth that we are indeed sinful like all of humanity, and therefore must work out our salvation through repentance. When we confess our sins and cling to Christ Jesus, we can be made righteous in Him. If we think ourselves already justified and without sin, we will find ourselves proven wrong on the last day. Christ wants us to bear fruit, like the fig tree in today's parable. The three years symbolize his own ministry, his message of conversion. That is the main fruit God wants of us: a humble confession of our need for God. God will provide the rest.
Moses today gives us a beautiful example of conversion and of humility. He was prince of Egypt, but he was a Hebrew. He was lost, searching for his identity, and he felt the suffering of his people. He tried to take matters into his own hands by killing a slave-driver. Realizing they did not want yet to be freed, he had to run. Now today, many years later, he learns to be humble and let God work. He realizes he is not in control and cannot impose his will on others.
Ultimately, though, the Lord gives us in Moses a beautiful account of who God truly is, and who he is not. In the burning bush, we only get a glimpse of God. He is a God whose name is mysterious, beyond controlling. But He also is a God who hears the cries of the poor, and a God who sends us on a mission. God is not a tyrant. Our image needs to change.
God of Mercy. Year of Mercy. Works of Mercy.