常年廿五主日:各盡所能,天恩無限 2020年09月20日


常年期第廿五主日

機關算盡太聰明

讀經一:(依55:6-9):天主的行徑不是人的行徑
讀經二:(斐1:20-25,27):或生或死,總要叫基督受頌揚
福 音:(瑪20:1-16):僱工的比喻
中國文化: 華子健忘。 機關算盡太聰明。


今天耶穌講了一個招聘工人的比喻。

比喻描述天國好像一個家主,清晨一大早就出去為自己的葡萄園招聘工人。他在起初時給工人議定了一天的工資是一個「德納」。稍後於第三時辰,第六、第九和第十一時辰,他都同樣出去招聘工人,並許下要給他們公道的工資。

到了傍晚,家主就給工人發工資,由最後的開始派發。他們全部都得到一個「德納」。輪到清晨最先招聘來的第一批工人,他們以為自己可以多得一些,怎知所得的,仍是預先約定的一個「德納」。他們就對家主的所為十分不滿,並抱怨家主虧待了他們。

家主就對他們其中的一個說:「朋友!我並沒有虧負你,你不是和我議定了一個「德納」嗎?拿你的走罷!我願意給這最後來的和給你的一樣。難道不許我拿我所有的財物,行我所願意的嗎?或是因為我好,你就眼紅嗎?

耶穌藉著這個比喻,要給我們介紹的,是一個慈悲、慷慨的天主,一個從來不斤斤計較的天主。

依撒意亞先知書第55章引述上主的話說:「我的思想不是你們的思想,你們的行徑也不是我的行徑。正如高天超越大地,我的途徑也超越你們的途徑。」(依55:8)

我們很多時候,好像要作天主的秘書或管家。我們想規範天主,甚至祈禱時也要「教」天主怎樣做。例如有些人在信友禱文中為社會祈禱時會說:「上主,求你祝福我們的社會,幫助我們的社會安定繁榮,使人人能夠安居樂業。求你幫助那些老闆不可剝削工人,幫助工人能夠好好地善盡責任」等等。我們會將一大串我們心中認為是美好的東西,變成祈禱,並要天主去遵守,希望天主能照樣做。
那是名副其實的「我旨承行」,「願我的旨意奉行在人間」,而不是「爾(天主)旨承行」!

我們忘記了,其實天主愛我們,多過我們愛我們自己;天主認識我們,也比我們認識我們自己更深。聖奧斯定有句拉丁名言說:「Deus est intimior intimo meo」,意思是說,天主(Deus)和我們之間的關係,比我們的五臟六腑(intimo)和我們的關係更加密切(intimior)。

是的,全知的天主確實知道我們整個生命、整個社會的需要。天主明白我們的過去,看到我們的未來,看到我們的、社會的、宇宙的一切。只有天主才知道甚麼為我們最好。

《列子》裡有一個叫做「華子健忘」的故事:宋國的華子患了健忘症,一出門便忘記回家,現在又忘記以前的事。他常常問:「我現在在哪裡?」人答說:「這裡便是你的家呀!」有時,他會對著他的太太說:「你好漂亮呀!你叫甚麼名字?」她說:「我是你的太太啊!」

對於華子這種病,她的太太覺得很焦慮、很傷心,於是就許下,誰若能醫好華子的健忘症,便給他一半財產。

有一個人想盡了所有的方法去醫華子的病,果然華子的病好了。但結果是華子變得很衝動,常常發怒,且將妻子趕出門,對兒子任意打罵。

別人就問:「你的病好了,為甚麼會變成這樣?」華子說:「以前當我健忘的時候,我坦坦蕩蕩,連天地有無都不放在心頭。而今我恢復記憶了,生死、得失、喜怒、哀樂全都湧現出來,我想暫時忘記生活的重擔都不可能。所以我覺得更加煩惱。」

為甚麼這個世界有這麼多的紛爭?因為我們的記憶力太好。為甚麼那些工人不開心?因為他們記得:如果早晨來的要得一元,那麼晚些來到的就該少得些。而這些晚來的工人居然和我這個「整天受勞受苦的」享有同等的待遇、領取同樣的工資,那就是不公道!

心裡面有太多的是非、太多的分別,是因為有太多的計謀和計算。我們計算得很精、很全、很盡,是真真正正曹雪芹所說的:「機關算盡太聰明。」而機關算太聰明的結果,恐怕會是「反誤了卿卿性命」,即是使我們自己不開心,別人也難過。

但是天主並不如此,天主並不要和我們計算,他是一個慷慨為懷,大方對待萬物眾生的天主。

讓我們求天主賜給我們這樣的一個慈悲、慷慨大方的心,去面對世情、處理世事。

常年期第廿五主日

机关算尽太聪明

读经一:(依55:6-9):天主的行径不是人的行径
读经二:(斐1:20-25,27):或生或死,总要叫基督受颂扬
福 音:(玛20:1-16):雇工的比喻
中国文化: 华子健忘。机关算尽太聪明。


今天耶稣讲了一個招聘工人的比喻。

比喻描述天国好像一個家主,清晨一大早就出去为自己的葡萄园招聘工人。他在起初時给工人议定了一天的工资是一個「德纳」。稍后於第三時辰,第六、第九和第十一時辰,他都同样出去招聘工人,并许下要给他们公道的工资。

到了傍晚,家主就给工人发工资,由最后的開始派发。他们全部都得到一個「德纳」。轮到清晨最先招聘来的第一批工人,他们以为自己可以多得一些,怎知所得的,仍是预先约定的一個「德纳」。他们就对家主的所为十分不满,并抱怨家主亏待了他们。

家主就对他们其中的一個说:「朋友!我并没有亏负你,你不是和我议定了一個「德纳」吗?拿你的走罢!我願意给这最后来的和给你的一样。难道不许我拿我所有的财物,行我所願意的吗?或是因为我好,你就眼红吗?

耶稣藉著这個比喻,要给我们介绍的,是一個慈悲、慷慨的天主,一個从来不斤斤计较的天主。

依撒意亚先知书第55章引述上主的话说:「我的思想不是你们的思想,你们的行径也不是我的行径。正如高天超越大地,我的途径也超越你们的途径。」(依55:8)

我们很多時候,好像要作天主的秘书或管家。我们想规范天主,甚至祈祷時也要「教」天主怎样做。例如有些人在信友祷文中为社会祈祷時会说:「上主,求你祝福我们的社会,帮助我们的社会安定繁荣,使人人能够安居乐业。求你帮助那些老板不可剥削工人,帮助工人能够好好地善尽責任」等等。我们会将一大串我们心中认为是美好的东西,变成祈祷,并要天主去遵守,希望天主能照样做。
那是名副其实的「我旨承行」,「願我的旨意奉行在人间」,而不是「尔(天主)旨承行」!

我们忘记了,其实天主爱我们,多過我们爱我们自己;天主认识我们,也比我们认识我们自己更深。圣奥斯定有句拉丁名言说:「Deus est intimior intimo meo」,意思是说,天主(Deus)和我们之间的关系,比我们的五脏六腑(intimo)和我们的关系更加密切(intimior)。

是的,全知的天主确实知道我们整個生命、整個社会的需要。天主明白我们的過去,看到我们的未来,看到我们的、社会的、宇宙的一切。只有天主才知道甚么为我们最好。

《列子》 里有一個叫做「华子健忘」的故事:宋国的华子患了健忘症,一出门便忘记回家,现在又忘记以前的事。他常常問:「我现在在哪里?」人答说:「这里便是你的家呀!」有時,他会对著他的太太说:「你好漂亮呀!你叫甚么名字?」她说:「我是你的太太啊!」

对於华子这种病,她的太太觉得很焦虑、很伤心,於是就许下,谁若能醫好华子的健忘症,便给他一半财產。

有一個人想尽了所有的方法去醫华子的病,果然华子的病好了。但结果是华子变得很冲动,常常发怒,且将妻子赶出门,对儿子任意打骂。

别人就問:「你的病好了,为甚么会变成这样?」华子说:「以前当我健忘的時候,我坦坦荡荡,连天地有无都不放在心头。而今我恢复记憶了,生死、得失、喜怒、哀乐全都涌现出来,我想暂時忘记生活的重担都不可能。所以我觉得更加烦恼。」

为甚么这個世界有这么多的纷争?因为我们的记憶力太好。为甚么那些工人不開心?因为他们记得:如果早晨来的要得一元,那么晚些来到的就該少得些。而这些晚来的工人居然和我这個「整天受劳受苦的」享有同等的待遇、领取同样的工资,那就是不公道!

心里面有太多的是非、太多的分别,是因为有太多的计谋和计算。我们计算得很精、很全、很尽,是真真正正曹雪芹所说的:「机关算尽太聪明。」而机关算太聪明的结果,恐怕会是「反误了卿卿性命」,即是使我们自己不開心,别人也难過。

但是天主并不如此,天主并不要和我们计算,他是一個慷慨为怀,大方对待万物众生的天主。

让我们求天主赐给我们这样的一個慈悲、慷慨大方的心,去面对世情、处理世事。

TWENTY-FIFTH SUNDAY IN ORDINARY TIME

Too Clever at Dealing with Others

First Reading (Is 55:6-9) : God's ways are not the human ways.
Second Reading (Phil 1:20-25,27): Christ will be exalted whether by life or by death.
Gospel (Mt 20:1-16): The parable of hiring laborers for the vineyard
Chinese Classics:
The Story of the Forgetful c(1)
“Too Clever at Dealing with Others.” (2)

Today, Jesus told us the parable of a vineyard owner and his workers.

In the parable, the Kingdom of heaven is like this: a man went out early in the morning to hire workers for his vineyard. He agreed with the workers that they would receive a denarius for the day. Later the day, at about the third, sixth, ninth, and eleventh hours, he did likewise.

That evening, the vineyard owner paid the workers their wages, starting with those whom he hired last. They each received a denarius. When it came to the first batch of workers, they supposed that they would receive more since they started working the earliest. On receiving only a denarius as they had agreed, they felt that they were unfairly treated and murmured against the vineyard owner.

The owner said to one of them, “Friend, I am doing you no wrong; did you not agree with me for the usual daily wage? Take what belongs to you and go; I choose to give to this last the same as I give to you. Am I not allowed to do what I choose with what belongs to me? Or are you envious because I am generous?

Using this parable, Jesus presented to us a benevolent, generous God, who is never meticulous about calculating gains and losses.

Chapter 55 of Isaiah quoted what God said about Himself, ‘For my thoughts are not your thoughts, nor are your ways my ways. For as the heavens are higher than the earth, so are my ways higher than your ways.’ (Is 55:8)

Many a time, we act as if we were God's secretary or butler. We try to manage His affair and we even ‘teach’ Him what to do in our prayers. For instance, in the Prayers of the Faithful, some pray for their society, “ God, bless our society. Help it grow prosperously and may it remain stable so that all can live and work contentedly. Don't let bosses exploit their employees. Make employees work conscientiously .” Our prayers in fact contain chains of things that are desirable in our eyes and we simply ask God to fulfill our wishes. This is exactly the converse of ‘Your will be done on earth’.

We forget that God loves us more than we love ourselves and that He knows us better than we know ourselves. St.Augustin made a Latin remark: Deus est intimior intimo meo. His celebrated remark means that God (deus) is closer to us (intimior) than we are to our internal organs (intimo).

God is omniscient. He knows our whole life and the needs of the society. He understands our past and foresees our future. With Him overseeing everything in the universe, we can be sure that only He knows what is best for us.

In Lie Tze, there is a story called “The Forgetful Hua Zi”. Hua Zi lived in the country of Sung. He was suffering from the illness of forgetfulness. Once he left home, he forgot to return home. He only remembered the present and forgot the past. He often asked, “Where am I now?” People would tell him, “This is your home.” Sometimes, he would tell his wife, “You're so pretty! What is your name?” She would say, “I am your wife!”

Hua Zi's wife was very worried and sad about Hua Zi's illness. She made a promise that whoever could cure Hua Zi's forgetfulness; she would give him half of their wealth.

A man tried all sorts of methods to cure Hua Zi and finally succeeded in curing Hua Zi. However, Hua Zi became very excitable and often lost his temper. He drove his wife away from home and beat his son for no reason.

People asked him, “You're cured but how comes that you have changed so much?” Hua Zi said, “When I could not remember a thing, I felt calm and at peace. The sky and the world could disappear for all I cared. I didn't have a worry in my heart. But now I've got back my memory, my consciousness of life and death, gain and loss, joy and anger, happiness and sorrow has all returned. I cannot forget, even for a short time, these heavy burdens of life. I feel so very vexed.

Why are there so many conflicts on earth? It is because we have excellent memories. Why were some workers in the vineyard so unhappy? This was just because they remembered all too well that they started the day's work earlier than the other workers. They thought that the late- comers did not deserve a pay as high as one dollar because only they ‘had toiled all day’. To them, it was unjust if all were given the same treatment.

Our hearts are full of what is right and wrong and all sorts of disputes because we are too preoccupied with plotting and calculating. Our calculations are most skilful, most complete and most thorough. They fit perfectly Cao Xueqin's description: “Too Clever at Dealing with Others.”(2) However, the result of our clever stratagem is, unfortunately, “Mistakenly causing our lover's life”. The result does not only make us sad, it also makes other people feel sorry.

God is so bounteous that He is generous to all creatures alike. God does not want to go to the bother to calculate if we are worthy of His grace.

We pray that God will grant us benevolence and generosity like that of His to handle the worldly affairs that we encounter.

(1)華子健忘。

(2)機關算盡太聰明。

 

現場講道(粵語)

教友證道


神父講道


現場講道文稿

主日八分半(彌撒講道)

粵語講道


普通話講道



 

徐錦堯@fr.luketsui.idv.hk 2020