Jesus the Messiah

Fourteenth Sunday in Ordinary Time –Year A– Let Christ bring about messianic restoration through your life.

The prophet Zechariah prophesies about the hidden ways towards the messianic restoration of Israel leading to the Day of the Lord establishing the Kingdom of God. There would be the coming of the messiah who would achieve the restoration of all Israel. Our first reading tells us that this messiah was going to be a just and humble one whose ways was going to be the opposite of the popular idea of what a king should be. He is not one who is served; rather, he is one who puts himself at the service of all. This messianic king will be a cause of joy for whom Zion should rejoice heartily. He will bring about a peaceful reign; his dominion shall be from sea to sea and from the river to the ends of the earth. It will be through the humble way that the expected messiah will bring about the return of all the exiles and the destruction of Judah’s enemies. The prophet expressed the peaceful role of the messiah, when he says that he will banish the chariot from Ephraim, and the horse from Jerusalem; The warrior’s bow shall be banished, and he shall proclaim peace to the nations. In Christ’s triumphal entry into Jerusalem, we find the fulfillment of this prophecy of Zechariah. Recall Matthew’s Gospel 21 in which Jesus entered into Jerusalem amidst a great crowd singing “Hosanna to the Son of David; blessed is he who comes in the name of the Lord; hosanna in the highest.”

In Isaiah 42, the prophet describes the ways of Jesus Christ in these words: “he shall bring forth justice to the nations, not crying out, not shouting, nor making his voice heard in the street. A bruised reed he shall not break, and a smoldering wick he shall not quench, until he establishes justice on the earth; the coastlands will wait for his teaching.” Jesus reigns with humility, suffering and death, with complete trust in the Divine Will of the Father.

In our own case, we want to do it by ourselves, we want to be in-charge. Many times, we trust in ourselves and our technical-know-how. In our times, many people claim that it is our world, we know it all, we have no need to be told what to do or what to believe. Many times our so called intellectuals have no room for faith. Many of our people who have studied in Universities claim to be wise. Today, Jesus praises the Father for hiding these things from the wise and the learned and for revealing them to the humble, that is, the child-like. Jesus is not opposed to education or learning. He wants us to be humble and be open to the receiving of the things of God. There should be no dichotomy between Faith and Reason, Faith enlightens reason and reason is used to systematize faith. St. Thomas Aquinas tell us that faith and reason must go hand in hand. The problem comes when we start learning without the aid of faith. It is a danger to learn in an environment where there is no religion in the schools. While we teach our children the sciences, we must also teach them religion to know their faith and God. Jesus invites us today: come to me, all you who are weary and find life burdensome, and I will refresh you.” Let us bring our children to Jesus to find in Him, the one who will teach them and reveal to them the mysteries of God’s Kingdom. Bring your children and grandchildren to the church. Teach them to have the Spirit of Christ.

Each of us baptized, has put on Christ and is a new creation. That means that we must have the mind and semblance of Christ, because we are now in him, as his continuing presence. That is why St. Paul tells us today, that we are not in the flesh; we are in the spirit, since the Spirit of God dwells in us. Through his Spirit, the power of sin, death and law can be confronted and overcome. That means that, like Christ, we will be meek and humble of heart. Like Christ, we will not be the ones who are served, but the ones who serve and put our lives at the service of others, in order to build up the Kingdom of God on earth.