Immersed in Christ: January 11, 2021
Monday of the First Week in Ordinary Time
(Begin ORDINARY TIME, during which our focus will be on DISCIPLESHIP. The First Reading, Weeks 1-4, covers all of the Letter to the Hebrews. Hebrews 1:1-6; Psalm 97; Mark 1:14-20)
“Let all his angels worship him!”
Hebrews begins with an emphatic exhortation to listen to what Jesus says and to what Scripture says about him. Jesus is not just any messenger from God. The word “angel” means “messenger,” and God used angels to speak to us “in many and various ways,” as he used the prophets. But now:
In these last days he has spoken to us by a Son, whom he appointed heir of all things, through whom he also created the worlds.... and he sustains all things by his powerful word.
The words of Jesus are the words of the Word through whom “all things came into being.” Nothing exists except by the ongoing act of his will. What this says to us is, “Listen up!” 1
Let’s not make light of the privilege that is being offered to us. Jesus, the one revealing himself to us, is the Son, “the reflection of God’s glory and the exact imprint of God’s very being.” To know him is to know the One who is as far above the angels as the name he has inherited is superior to theirs. “For to which of the angels did God ever say, “You are my Son”?
Jesus is the revelation of God Himself, of the Infinite One, the One who is All Truth, All Goodness, All Beauty and Being. Who are we that God should let us know him as he is? But that is exactly what he is doing. That is not a gift to take lightly.
Jesus is speaking to us in words. But he who is speaking those words is the one whose word is the very source of our existence. “He sustains all things by his powerful word.” God speaks and we exist. Our act of existing is a “word” that God is speaking right now. We are his song. We continue to exist only as long as he “holds the note.” God’s word is our being, our life. When he speaks to reveal truth to us, his words are words of life. The Light of Life is not to be taken lightly.
When the Responsorial says, “Let all his angels worship him!” it is calling us to show the same acknowledgment of his unimaginable Being that they do, but to show it by paying attention to his words. If we give supreme adoration and praise to the one who is talking, what kind of respect will we give to his words?
The Introductory Rites of the Mass are followed by the Liturgy of the Word. In every Mass the Church gathers around the word of God to listen. This should say to us, because it is meant to say to us, that our lives should be centered on his words. The word of God sustains Christian life the way God’s creative word keeps everything in existence. The influence of God’ words in our life should be as ongoing as the influence of his creative word. To live as divine we need Christ’s Life and his Light both present and active within us: “If you abide in me, and my words abide in you, ask for whatever you wish, and it will be done for you.” 2 Meditation: 1. Do I really believe that in Jesus is all Truth, Goodness, Life and Being? 2. Do I believe that by reflecting on his words I can let him communicate more of his Truth and Life to me? 3. Do I choose to act in a way consistent with my belief? 4. If not, why not? 5. If so, what practical decision do I make right now?
1 John 1:1-18. 2 John 15:7.