Faith Daily | 3 January 2023
PRAYER of the DAY - APBA p479
by the leading of a star
you manifested your only-begotten Son to the Gentiles:
mercifully grant, that we, who know you now by faith,
may after this life be led to the vision
of your glorious Godhead;
through Jesus Christ our Lord.
GOSPEL for the Day: John 1: 29-34
29The next day he saw Jesus coming toward him and declared, “Here is the Lamb of God who takes away the sin of the world! 30This is he of whom I said, ‘After me comes a man who ranks ahead of me because he was before me.’ 31I myself did not know him; but I came baptizing with water for this reason, that he might be revealed to Israel.” 32And John testified, “I saw the Spirit descending from heaven like a dove, and it remained on him. 33I myself did not know him, but the one who sent me to baptize with water said to me, ‘He on whom you see the Spirit descend and remain is the one who baptizes with the Holy Spirit.’ 34And I myself have seen and have testified that this is the Son of God.”
GOSPEL REFLECTION: Peter Brady
In yesterday's reading John explained himself to Israel's religious leadership (or their representatives) as the one who prepares the way for the coming of the Lord. Today John completes his mission and acknowledges Jesus as the Lord's anointed. In doing so he urges people to look to 'the Lamb of God who takes away the sin of the world'.
While familiar to us, this phrase is no less shocking now than when John said it. In the second temple period it was accepted that sin could be transferred to an animal that was then sacrificed in atonement. But the idea that God would willingly assume this role Himself is shocking. By extension, so to is the realisation that sin is serious. But how often do we forget this when we are in the midst of temptation or behaving badly to someone else? Every sin committed against someone else is really committed against God. His is the standard by which our words, thoughts and actions are measured. Fortunately, we have Jesus the Lamb who saves and all we need to do, as John says, is to look. Look, recognise him and be saved. Nothing more, nothing less.
And the concluding prayer:
O Lord Jesus Christ, You have said, "Ask and you shall receive, seek, and you shall find, knock, and it shall be opened to you." Grant to us who look, the gift of Your most divine love, that we may ever love You with our whole heart, in word and deed, and never cease praising You.