Jesus is the Christ. To know him so makes us acknowledge that we are not worthy of him and spares us, too, of all disappointment.
Those who come from Jerusalem do not receive John’s baptism; they are there to grill him and judge him. The priests and the Levites pepper him with questions and they get annoyed with him more and more. And the Pharisees ask him, “Why, then, do you baptize if you are not the Christ or Elijah or the Prophet?” Their disappointment shows.
John does not meet their expectations, which, no doubt, gives rise to the annoyance and disappointment of the wise. The biases of the learned blind them to who really is the one whom God has sent. They do not have the cleanness of heart that one cannot do without if one is to see God and what he wants. In the end, they quench the Spirit and despise prophecies.
Free from all disappointment
On the other hand, the simple folks, like the least of Jesus’ brothers and sisters, are clean of heart. They are the least, so they are the greatest (Mt 11, 11; 18, 4). And the Father, Lord of heaven and earth, makes known to them what he hides from the wise (Mt 11, 25).
Besides, the Lord leads the lowly and teaches them his way (Ps 25, 9). They may be gullible and crude, yet Christ is in them (SV.EN XI:26).
Hence, we ask ourselves, “Are we of the simple folks?” That is to say, of those who have the true religion, the living faith (SV.EN XI:190). “They believe, touch, taste the words of life. You never see them … get carried away with impatience …; not at all or rarely” (SV.EN XII:142). They know no disappointment. Rather, they are deeply joyful in the Lord.
Or do we dismiss what Phil 2, 3 says and, instead, claim that we are above others? We will, then, run the risk of turning into inquisitors, like those who are from Jerusalem. And we will not know either John or Jesus.
Lord Jesus, you give up your body and shed your blood for us. Make us grasp what you do for us, so that we, too, may do it. With joy and generosity, with no disappointment.
13 December 2020
Third Sunday of Advent (B)
Is 61, 1-2a. 10-11; 1 Thes 5, 16-24; Jn 1, 6-8. 19-28