Gospel: Mt 5:33-37
You have also heard that people were told in the past: Do not break your oath; an oath sworn to the Lord must be kept. But I tell you this: do not take oaths. Do not swear by the heavens, for they are God’s throne; nor by the earth, because it is his foot stool; nor by Jerusalem, because it is the city of the great king. Do not even swear by your head, because you cannot make a single hair white or black. Let your ‘Yes’ mean ‘Yes’ and your ‘No’ mean ‘No.’ Anything else you say comes from the evil one.
Our words should have weight because our faithfulness to our spoken words and our commitment to keep them shows others the kind of person we are. Either we can be trusted or not depending on how we keep our word. And so Jesus cautions us not make an elaborate display of oath and swearing in rituals to assure others of our trustworthiness. For on the contrary, only those whose words cannot be trusted need this kind of elaboration.
And so, we need to practice to mean what we say and do what we say we should do. This needs a formation that has to go with time. You cannot have trustworthiness at once. It has to be a series of repeated acts where we affirm the trust of others to our words. In short, there are trusts that are earned through time. May we cultivate this wonderful virtue and be like Jesus Christ who is trustworthy in words and deeds.