Fri, 5 January 2018
(1Jn.5:5-13; Ps.147:12-15,19-20; Mk.1:7-11)
“God gave us eternal life,
and this life is in His Son.”
How reassuring John is to us who believe – “I have written this to you to make you realize that you possess eternal life” – for how easily we can forget the grace that is ours “in the name of the Son of God.” How sure he is. How clear in his explanation. How loving. One has little reason to wonder why he was beloved of the Lord, for this love bleeds in all his words and leads us to that love of Christ that is eternal life.
The Father’s witness has been given clearly, “You are my beloved Son. On you my favor rests.” Mark, too, makes certain that Jesus is the Son of God. How can we forget the words of the Father? And how can we forget the blood He has shed on our behalf, and the water that flows like baptism from His side? “It is the Spirit who testifies to this, and the Spirit is truth.” If you have the Spirit dwelling in you, you know this – it sets your heart on fire, and is indeed as the breath of life. How can we know anything but eternal life when baptized in the Holy Spirit by the Lord?
“He has granted you peace in your borders,” our psalmist proclaims; and in the Spirit we have only peace – nothing lacking rest can enter there. And now “with the best of wheat He fills [us],” now that we receive His body in the Eucharist. What bread indeed we eat! Here is the bread of life. We have His Word born in the Spirit spoken to our ears, and on His very presence we sup. Such witnesses! What more need we to believe?
“Jesus is the Son of God,” brothers and sisters. This alone you need remember. When all else fails and darkness pervades, know that Jesus is with you and bringing you to life.
O LORD, let us be baptized in the Holy Spirit,
and we shall have eternal life.
YHWH, eternal life you have given us in your only Son. Peace reigns in Him, and in us, if we believe in Him. As the Spirit descended upon your beloved One, so it descends upon those who believe in the Name of Jesus. Him you have sent us that you might give us yourself.
There is none greater than Jesus the Christ, nor shall there be. There is no one else for whom we need wait. He has come. He has died for us. Now He is risen and His Spirit is with us to guide us to all life. Help us, O LORD, to remember this; help us to hold on to the blessing you have provided in your only Son.
With the best of wheat fill us, O LORD, with His Body and His Blood; His flesh let us become. Then nothing shall disturb us; then our faith will make us whole. Then we shall hear your words pronounced over us that we are your beloved children. O let the Spirit fall upon us and remain with us! Let us be cleansed of sin and believe in your Word.