RECOGNIZING CHRIST WITHIN
In the Gospel we hear that the Jews asked John, “Why then do you baptize if you are not the Christ or Elijah or the Prophet?”
John answered them,“I baptize with water; but there is one among you whom you do not recognize”. . . . (whispering) that would be Jesus.
But why couldn’t the Jews recognize him? There is, of course, no one answer: as we know many expected the Messiah to come as royalty or a warrior – in both cases purifying and uniting the kingdom of Israel.
In the context of today’s readings and Advent emphasis on repentance, you could say that people did not recognize the Messiah on account of their own sinfulness, which blinded them to the Truth.
And while both of these reasons are valid and true, I would like us to reflect on a third possibility: that they simply didn’t believe it was possible for God to act through someone so ordinary – someone like themselves.
CLICK HERE for the readings for the Third Sunday of Advent (Isaiah 61:1-2, 10-11; Luke 1:46-54; 1 Thessalonians 5:16-24; John 1:6-8, 19-28).