From the pastor’s desk
Second Sunday of Lent -Year C– God’s promises and the taste of future glory
In our life experiences, many times we have many desires; we are asked to wait prayerfully and patiently for their coming about. Many times we feel conditions are not there for our realizing what we expect from God. At times we become impatient as we wait for their coming about. When this happens, we are not alone. In our salvation history, God called Abram, promising him land and a great posterity.
When this seemed to be far from being a reality, because he had no direct heir of his own, God promised him that his direct descendants would be like the countless stars in the night sky. Abram put his faith in the Lord which was credited to him as an act of righteousness. Since Abraham still had no direct heir, he wanted some kind of assurances. As a result, God asked him to bring some animals which he cut in halves and laid side by side. This was an ancient ritual of animals in which God made a covenant with him guaranteeing that he will do what he has promised. It was only God symbolized by the flame of fire who passed between the parts of the cut animals. By so doing, God binds himself unilaterally to fulfill his promises. As we see in Jeremiah 34:18, this was an ancient covenant ritual in which the contracting parties solemnly bound themselves to keep their part of the contract. Failure to do this
would lead to the same fate as that of the animals that had been cut in two. All that is required of Abraham, and every Christian, is total faith that God will fulfill what he has promised. God did fulfill for Abraham his promises in giving him both innumerable descendants and land. By him, all the families of the earth have been blessed. He has also fulfilled it by giving him uncountable spiritual descendants through Jesus Christ.
In his Son, Jesus Christ, God has continued to fulfill his promises of salvation and has made a great covenant with humanity not in the blood of animals but in the blood of his own Son, offering us eternal life with him in heaven. That is why in his transfiguration, Jesus show us the great life of glory thatawaits us. It is that, which no eye has seen, no ear has heard, what God has prepared for those who love him. It is for those who respond to God’s immense love. The vision of this great glory captivated Peter, James and John on the mountain of the Transfiguration, when they saw Jesus transfigured in glory. This made them to desire to dwell in it forever, to the extent that Peter wanted to make three tents for Jesus, Moses and Elijah. They were not to dwell there forever because Jesus only wanted to confirm them in the faith by enabling them to see the Celestial witnesses, Moses and Elijah and to hear the Father’s voice; “this is my Son, my Chosen One. Listen to Him.”
Jesus wanted to teach them and us, through their witnessing that for us to come to heavenly glory, we are first of all to go through the way of suffering, passion and death. There is no resurrection, without death; there is no Easter without Good Friday. We must journey with Jesus and be with him in his life, death and resurrection. There are many prosperity gospel preachers today who mislead the people of God and preach cross-less Christianity. We should not listen to them. They teach the people to see crosses in their lives as evil. They teach the people to come and wait for their miracles and sow seeds for themselves by coming to their ministries. The prophets, the apostles, the evangelists and the saints, who bore witness to Jesus, identified with him, in his joyful mysteries, his sorrowful mysteries, as well as in his glorious mysteries. It is through his cross, passion and death that we come to the glory of his resurrection. We should not be enemies of the cross of Christ. To be citizens of heaven, we must identify with Jesus in all the mysteries of his life, death and resurrection.