Friday, 16 December 2016 : 3rd Week of Advent (Homily and Scripture Reflections)

Liturgical Colour : Purple/Violet
Dear brothers and sisters in Christ, on this day we listened to the words of hope which God Himself had revealed through His prophets, which yet many of His own people had ignored and forgotten. Through the prophet Isaiah, God revealed His love for all of His beloved children, all of mankind whom He had created and to whom He had given life to be His children.

It was mentioned that the foreigners resigned to the fate that they would be rejected by God and ignored by Him because they were not counted among the Jews. However, this was the fallacy that was in fact, a rebuke by God against the actions and the outlook of the people of God, whom at that time, and at the time of Jesus, took great pride in their status as the chosen people, as the sons and daughters of Abraham, his direct descendants, and they despised the pagans and the Gentiles, or the non-Jewish people.

But God loves all of His children, all of those He had created without exception. He chose Abraham out of all of them to be the first among those to whom He would reveal about Himself and His salvation, with the ultimate goal and aim of the salvation and liberation of all of humanity, and not just exclusive to the direct descendants of Abraham alone, as some among the people had misunderstood God’s intention.

And moreover, while they claimed to be the descendants of Abraham and thus claimed the right to the salvation and the inheritance that God promised their forefathers, but many of them lived in sin and disobeyed God frequently, to the point that God had to punish them for their waywardness, and indeed, it was a great shame that the people whom God had chosen had rebelled against Him and disobeyed His will.

Imagine, brethren, that God had blessed them as His people, and yet, in their words, actions and deeds, they had not done what He had asked them and taught them to do. It would be such a great scandal in the eyes of those who saw their actions. How could the people of God, chosen by God, did such wicked and abhorrent things?

In the same manner, how can those who see us believe in God if our own actions do not proclaim God’s ways and glory? As Christians, God has chosen us all anew from all of His people, as the fulfilment of His promise, that He will gather all of His beloved ones to Himself. No longer was it that the promise of salvation be an exclusive domain of the Jewish people but for all mankind.

But no one will believe in us if we ourselves are not doing as what the Lord had taught us just as the Israelites had scandalised the Lord before many, many times. One of the last tasks that God had entrusted and indeed commanded all of us to do, through His disciples, is that we all should proclaim the Good News that He had brought into this world to all the peoples, that they all may find their way to God and to His salvation.

Therefore, brothers and sisters in Christ, as we prepare ourselves for the coming of Christmas during this season of Advent, let us all commit ourselves anew to our faith and to the Lord our God. Let us all renew our efforts to live righteously in accordance with God’s ways, and seek to be forgiven for our sins and our iniquities of the past. Let us no longer repeat our sinful ways and from now on commit ourselves to righteousness, that all who see us may come to believe in God and be saved as well.

May the Lord our God bless us and keep us, and may He strengthen our faith and our devotion, so that we may grow ever stronger and ever closer to Him. May God bless us all, now and forevermore. Amen.

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