He is the Son of God

In this week’s first reading (Isaiah  49: 3, 5-6), Isaiah learns that he is God’s servant and  a vessel for God to show his glory.  He also learns that God is his source of strength and that God will do the actual work through Isaiah in restoring Israel and bringing salvation.

The Lord tells Isaiah (and us) , “It is too little for you to be my servant.”  God says, “I will make you a light to the nations, that my salvation may reach to the ends of the earth.”

These readings speak to us just as clearly as they did to Isaiah. Today we can ask ourself:

Am I a light to the nations?

Am I being all that God is calling me to be?

Is God the source of my strength?

Does my service to God end as I exit the church doors or am I a shining light seven days a week?

In today’s second reading (1 Corinthians 1:1-3), Paul defends his authority, reminds us of our call to be holy and united and extends a beautiful greeting/blessing to the Corinthians.

Paul says listen to me because I’ve been specifically chosen to bring you this message. His words are, “Paul, called to be an apostle of Christ Jesus by the will of God.” He’s writing to the Corinthians and to us as he says, “to you who have been sanctified in Christ Jesus, called to be holy.”   To  be sanctified means to be set apart for sacred use.

Do you consider yourself set apart for sacred use?  This reading aligns perfectly with Isaiah’s message of what God is calling us to be.

Here is Paul’s greeting/blessing:

Grace to you and peace from God our Father and the Lord Jesus Christ.

Can you imagine greeting or saying goodbye to  people that way?  Image if we were paying for family, friends and enemies to be filled with the grace and peace of God?

What will the world be like when that happens?

John the Baptist is holding center court in today’s gospel (John 1:29-34). He proclaims Jesus as the Lamb of God and the Son of God.  Although John didn’t know Jesus, he says that, “the reason why I came baptizing with water was that he might be made known to Israel.

John testifies that Jesus is the Son of God saying, “I saw the Spirit come down like a dove from heaven and remain upon him.”  He knew that this was the sign that he was looking for because “the one who sent me to baptize with water told me, ‘On whomever you see the Spirit come down and remain, he is the one who will baptize with the Holy Spirit.’”

In no uncertain terms John emphatically proclaims, “Now I have seen and testified that he is the Son of God.”

Blessed are those who have not seen and yet believed.

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