LEADING PEOPLE CLOSER TO CHRIST

Browsing Homilies

Fr. Bill

Homily Rerun   EASTER SUNDAY   

Fr. Bill

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My Dear Children of God:

One time, in the fertile fields of my imagination, I was digging in the ruins of the ancient city of Antioch, one of the centers of Christianity in the early days of the Church. I found a manuscript from which I would like to share with you.  The manuscript itself is much too frail to carry around and bring to church so I’ll be sharing from the notes which I recorded. 

The manuscript bore the title:     The Life and Times of the Word of God, Easter Edition: 

 and the subtitle:              “Jesus, It’s all About You.” 

It seemed to have had 2 parts:  Part One: Before Incarnation  /  Part Two: The Incarnation

 

In the table of contents there was a brief synopsis of each chapter. Please note that the manuscript was badly damaged and/or faded in many places especially in Part I. You will  notice that there are missing chapters. From the Table of Contents we are presented:

 

Part One:  Before the Incarnation (before the Word became flesh)

 

Prologue:  In The Beginning Was the Word. (Gen 1:1)

“In the beginning was the Word, and the Word was with God, and the Word was God.” (Jn 1:1) Thus

from before the beginning the Word was already present. It was all spiritual – there were no bodily

physical) things.

 

Chapter 1:  “In The Beginning, When God Created The Heavens and Earth” ‘God Made His Word

Present.’*

God did this on 6 consecutive days. In the manuscript there was a clearly marked footnote (or

Whatever they called it back then) * ‘God made His Word present’ is usually translated as ‘God said’ which has the advantage of being shorter, but the disadvantage of denigrating the reality making it seem unexceptional and familiar when in actuality it is exceptional and unfamiliar.

Each time God made His Word present something happened: Something came into being at the

power of the Word of God being made present.

At the end of each chapter synopsis in Part I there was a sentence or two titled: PREFIGURATION. Remember this was written in the early days of Christianity so they were always deeply concerned with how this ‘teaching’ prefigured, i.e. pointed to, Jesus. At this point in the manuscript Jesus, the Word-Made-Flesh, is not yet present, although the Word of God in the Person of His Only-Eternally-Begotten Son is present.

 

Chapter 4:  The Word of God is Made Present To Isaiah, the Prophet. In this context, the Word of God is being presented to the prophet to be passed on to us.

‘I am the Word of God which resides in the heart of God. I am being made present to you now to

reveal to you another occupant in the heart of God – and that would be His love for you. He loves you as a husband loves a wife – only perfectly and without exception. Your people, MY PEOPLE, have been as an unfaithful wife. But my love for you, all and each, is steadfast and faithful, steadfast and eternal, did I mention – STEADFAST.’

PREFIGURATION: Jesus, the Word-Made-Flesh, will be God’s heart for us. Jesus will be God’s steadfast, merciful love.

 

Chapter 6:  The Word of God is Made Present To Baruch, the Prophet.

‘To you I offer Lady Wisdom who stands at my throne sharing the light of My majesty. She comes  

to you with her attendants: prudence, understanding, and knowledge, and she brings you the gift of My Law and My joy.’

PREFIGURATION: Jesus, the Word-Made-Flesh, the fulfillment and perfection of the Law of God, will come to us in obedience to the will of His Father so that His joy would be ours and our joy would be complete.

 

Part Two:  The Incarnation (the Word was given physical presence in the created world; i.e. Jesus has arrived in the world as the Word-Made-Flesh))

 

Prologue:  “And the Word became flesh and made His dwelling among us, and we saw His glory, the glory

as of the Father’s only Son, full of grace and truth.” (Jn 1)

The Word of God is no longer just spoken; He lives in our midst as one of us. The pure spirit of

God took on a body, human flesh. This makes the phrase, ‘God made His Word present’ a whole lot more than ‘God said.’

 

Chapter 1:  The Incarnate Word of God is Made Present Through St Peter. (Whenever the manuscript says

“through” it means that it is intended for us, similar to the use of ‘the prophet’ in Part I.)

‘Jesus of Nazareth was anointed with the Holy Spirit and with power. He healed the sick and drove

out demons. They hung Him up on a tree until He died. But on the third day He came back to life and ate and drank with His chosen followers. He preached that “everyone who believes in Him will receive forgiveness of sins through His name,”

‘In short: Christ has died. Christ is risen. Christ will come again.’

 

Chapter 2:  The Incarnate Word of God is Made Present Through St Paul to the Colossians. (and to us)

‘Since you were raised to new life with Christ, think of what is above, and seek it.’ ‘Your life is in

Christ and you will appear with Him in glory.’

‘Christ has died, and so have you.  Christ is risen, and so are you.  Christ will come again, and you will be with Him.’

 

Chapter 3:  The Incarnate Word of God Is Missing!!! The Women Can’t Find Him or Even His Body!

Angels Appearing as Men! or was it, Men Appearing as Angels! The Ever-Talkative Peter Doesn’t Know

What to Say. (He Didn’t Know What to Think Either But That Never Stopped Him Before.) {This is a very

long title for a chapter. It seems to have been written by someone who was very long-winded.}

The only entry under this title was, ‘Christ has died. Christ is risen. Christ will come again.”

 

That’s it. The ancient manuscript found in the ruins of ancient Antioch ends here. BUT!!! It seems to indicate that there will be a sequel, and even hints at the name of the sequel: The Life and Times of the Word of God, Pentecost Edition: and the subtitle: “We are the Church: Jesus, We are here because of You and for You. Jesus, It’s all About You.”