The First Reading shows us what the Word of God is like. It is sweet to the taste but bitter to the stomach. What does this mean? The word translated as stomach is sometimes translated as heart, abdomen or any organ in the abdomen. The Word of God enters us. It is sweet, but it should change us internally. The fact that it becomes bitter in the stomach means it has to cause some trouble within us. The Word of God must make us uncomfortable and move us to repent and turn to God.
This reminds us of the parable of the seeds, where some seed fell on thorny ground. They receive the word with joy, but the troubles and cares of this world choked it. Likewise, those who fell on rocky ground. They sprout up quickly but because their roots are shallow, they die.
When we receive the Word, it will be sweet. We may find joy and comfort in it. But if we leave it in that, it will never take root. Reception of the Word must change us internally. If it does not change our hearts, the Word of God we receive is useless. This was what made Jesus drive those who were selling in the Temple. People went to the Temple in obedience to God, to worship him. But the Temple leaders, those who knew the Word were abusing their authority to cheat the people. These chief priests, the scribes, and the leaders of the people kept looking for a way to kill him. Their knowledge of the Word was of no use because they were willing to kill an innocent man so they can remain comfortable in their lifestyle.
Luke tells us: but all the people were spellbound by what they heard. The people heard the Word of God and that Word changed them, which is why they were spellbound. They wanted to hear more. They wanted more of what Jesus gives.
The Gospel acclamation tells us: My sheep listen to my voice, says the Lord, I know them and they follow me. The Word of God must change us so we can listen to his voice and follow him.
God calls us every day to follow him. Come to the Lord and let him change your life.
Lord, here I am. Let me hear your Word and let it change my heart. May I hear your voice and follow you, so you can be glorified in my life.