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Is Jesus a Judge and Arbitrator?

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In today’s Gospel reading, we read about the rich man and the bountiful harvest. The parable stems from a request, by a follower, asking Jesus to tell his brother to share an inheritance with him. Jesus retorts, “Friend, who appointed me as your judge and arbitrator?” (Luke 12:14). Jesus asks this question because He does not want to get in the middle of the squabble between the follower and his brother. Yet, Jesus never misses an opportunity to take such squabbles and turn them into a teaching moment. Ultimately, we all know that one day we will stand before Jesus, our Judge. In this life, we constantly ask Jesus to intervene in our affairs and arbitrate on our behalf. Therefore, we could all easily see Jesus as our judge and arbitrator. But, on this occasion, Jesus teaches us a different lesson. Judge and Arbitrator, or Savior and Redeemer? Life, a gift from God, is not an accumulation of possessions, but rather an accumulation of what matters to God. What we try to cling to in this…