Posted by: livingscripture | March 18, 2012

Fourth Sunday of Lent

From the Word of the Day

“Just as Moses lifted up the serpent in the desert, so must the Son of Man be lifted up, so that everyone who believes in him may have eternal life.”

                                         John 3: 14-15          

How should we live this Word 

This passage of today’s Gospel is part of a lengthy and deep dialog between Jesus and Nicodemus, who is attracted by the person of Jesus and His message, but fails to grasp who He is and what His message is. Jesus’ words are a clear declaration of His identity as Son of Man and Son of God.  At the same time, He is the revelation of the Father, ‘Who has so loved the world as to give His only Son so that whoever believes in Him will not be lost, but will have eternal life.’

In effect, Jesus is telling Nicodemus and every person who seeks Him, ‘I am the supreme gift of the Father for you.  He reveals Himself in Me, His only Son, sent to offer you the opportunity to participate in His life forever.  This gift you can receive or refuse; you are free.  However, it would be best to understand what it deals with before risking a decision.

The reference to the bronze serpent lifted up in the desert by Moses leads Nicodemus to reflect on God’s intervention in the history of Israel, and gradually grasp the truth of  Jesus.  In fact, Jesus is the light that dissipates the darkness as we listen to His message and continue to seek the truth with openness of heart.   Nicodemus’ presence at Jesus’ burial later on is very significant.

Today in my pause for silent contemplation, I will let these words resound in me, ‘those who are in the truth, go toward the light so that it is clearly seen that their works are done in God.’

Lord Jesus, faith is a gift to be sought after, accepted, guarded.  Give me a renewed heart, illumined by Your Spirit, so that I may really come to know You! 

The voice of Pope Benedict XVI 

It is not power that redeems, but love!  God, who became a lamb, tells us that the world is saved by the Crucified and not by the crucifiers.  The world is redeemed by the presence of God and is destroyed by the impatience of human beings.

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