What really is
Fr. ROY CIMAGALA,
November 25, 2021
ďHEAVEN and earth will
pass away, but my words will not pass away.Ē (Lk 21,33)
With these words of
Christ, we should feel the need to know what exactly is Godís word.
Why will it not pass away?
The simple answer is that
Godís word is not just an idea, a doctrine, an ideology. Itís not
just a strategy, a culture or a lifestyle. Of course, Godís word
involves all these, but unless we understand Godís word as Christ
himself, the God who became man to reveal to us all that we need to
know, all that we need to do to be Godís image and likeness as God
wants us to be, we will miss the real essence and character of Godís
We have to realize that
the word of God cannot be separated from God himself. Thatís because
God is so perfect as to be in absolute simplicity. As such, God has
no parts, no aspects, no quality or property that are distinct from
his very being. His word and his being are just one. There is no
distinction at all in him.
Of course, from our point
of view, we cannot help but to describe God according to our own
terms and ways that cannot help but make distinctions between the
essence of a being and its properties and qualities. But in himself,
God does not have distinction between his essence and the properties
that we attribute to him.
Of course, this is a
mystery, a supernatural truth that our reason cannot fully fathom.
That is why we need to have a strong faith to be able to accept this
truth. And once we accept by faith the absolute unity between God
and his word, then we will realize that reading and meditating on
the gospel is actually having a living encounter with God through
Thus, St. Jerome, a father
of the Church, once said that to read the Scripture is to converse
with GodóďIf you pray, you speak with the Spouse. If you read, it is
he who speaks to you,Ē he said.
Only when we realize that
Godís word is Christ himself and that reading it is like having an
encounter with Christ can Godís word truly be as the Letter to the
Hebrews described it: ďAlive and active. Sharper than any
double-edge sword, it penetrates even to dividing soul and spirit,
joints and marrow. It judges the thoughts and attitudes of the
Of course, we have to be
that good, rich soil referred to in that parable for Godís word to
take root in us and be fruitful. Otherwise, no matter how powerfully
effective Godís word is, if the reader of that word does not have
the right condition, that word would have no effect. It would fail
to produce fruit, ďthirty, sixty and even a hundredfold,Ē as Christ
That means that we should
handle the word of God with great faith and piety. We should not
just treat it as some literary or historical or cultural reading. We
have to realize that we are listening to Christ and that what we
hear from him should be taken very seriously.
That means that we have to
involve our whole being when reading Godís word. It should not just
be an intellectual affair, though we have to make full use of our
intelligence and all our other faculties when reading and meditating