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Homilies :: Latin Rite
Saturday of the 3rd Week in the Ordinary Time Download This Homily

February 2, 2019

Saturday of the 3rd Week in the Ordinary Time

 

 

Malachi 3:1-4 ;

 Psalm 24:7-10;

Hebrews 2:14-18;

Gospel LK 2:22-40 


When the days were completed for their purification according to the law of Moses, Mary and Joseph took Jesus up to Jerusalem to present him to the Lord, just as it is written in the law of the Lord, Every male that opens the womb shall be consecrated to the Lord, and to offer the sacrifice of a pair of turtledoves or two young pigeons, in accordance with the dictate in the law of the Lord. 

Now there was a man in Jerusalem whose name was Simeon. This man was righteous and devout, awaiting the consolation of Israel, and the Holy Spirit was upon him. It had been revealed to him by the Holy Spirit that he should not see death before he had seen the Christ of the Lord. He came in the Spirit into the temple; and when the parents brought in the child Jesus to perform the custom of the law in regard to him, he took him into his arms and blessed God, saying:

"Now, Master, you may let your servant go  in peace, according to your word, for my eyes have seen your salvation, which you prepared in the sight of all the peoples: a light for revelation to the Gentiles, and glory for your people Israel."

The child's father and mother were amazed at what was said about him; and Simeon blessed them and said to Mary his mother, "Behold, this child is destined for the fall and rise of many in Israel, and to be a sign that will be contradicted Band you yourself a sword will pierceB so that the thoughts of many hearts may be revealed." There was also a prophetess, Anna, the daughter of Phanuel, of the tribe of Asher. She was advanced in years, having lived seven years with her husband after her marriage, and then as a widow until she was eighty-four. She never left the temple, but worshiped night and day with fasting and prayer.And coming forward at that very time, she gave thanks to God and spoke about the child to all who were awaiting the redemption of Jerusalem.

When they had fulfilled all the prescriptions of the law of the Lord, they returned to Galilee, to their own town of Nazareth. The child grew and became strong, filled with wisdom; and the favor of God was upon him.

When the days were completed for their purification according to the law of Moses, Mary and Joseph took Jesus up to Jerusalem to present him to the Lord, just as it is written in the law of the Lord, Every male that opens the womb shall be consecrated to the Lord, and to offer the sacrifice of a pair of turtledoves or two young pigeons, in accordance with the dictate in the law of the Lord. 

Now there was a man in Jerusalem whose name was Simeon. This man was righteous and devout, awaiting the consolation of Israel, and the Holy Spirit was upon him. It had been revealed to him by the Holy Spirit that he should not see death before he had seen the Christ of the Lord. He came in the Spirit into the temple; and when the parents brought in the child Jesus to perform the custom of the law in regard to him, he took him into his arms and blessed God, saying:

"Now, Master, you may let your servant go  in peace, according to your word, for my eyes have seen your salvation, which you prepared in the sight of all the peoples: a light for revelation to the Gentiles, and glory for your people Israel."

 

 

Feast of the presentation of the Lord

 

The feast of the presentation of the baby Jesus in the temple seems to be an ‘epiphany’ of the Lord exclusively for the pious Jews who had gathered in the temple on that blessed day. This should have been the most holy gathering that the house of God ever enjoyed the blessed parents of the Son of God, righteous Simeon, and the prophetess Anna. All these Jewish saints were there to witness the Son of God in his Father’s house for the first time. The act of presentation of the baby Jesus by his parents declares loud and clears the humanity and the Jewishness of Jesus, the God-become-man. The event tells us of a God who was subject to the law given by him (Ex 13:2-12). He would certainly perfect some of those laws later. But the time now is for compliance. He subjected himself to the Law that he might redeem those who were under the law.


Simeon in the representative of those righteous members of Judaism who in their piety would look forward to the coming of the Messiah. Those who, in righteousness, long for the Messiah, do not seek for wonders and miracles and signs from heaven to believe. They know him when they see him because they are led by the Spirit. On the contrary, the Scribes and the Pharisees in their self-righteousness will not recognize him in spite of the signs and wonders galore. They will in fact ask for more, not to believe, but to test and to trap. Hence, Jesus would warn his listeners later that unless their righteousness exceeded that of the Scribes and the Pharisees, they would not enter the Kingdom of heaven (Mt 5:20).


Anna the prophetess represents those who found themselves in the right place to have the vision of the Saviour. It would be unfair on the part of God if she was not rewarded with the comfort of the beholding his, for she has been in the temple serving him in fasting and prayer for at least sixty-five years prior to the Lord’s visit to her in the temple today.  For her, the fairly long wait was insignificant compared to eh ecstasy of the fulfilment of her dream.


In fact many others present in the temple at the time, would have laid their eyes on the baby Jesus, but to these he and the hands that held him close to a bosom were just another usual sight. The ardent expectation and the resultant recognition of the baby and its parents by the righteous Simeon and the prophetess Anna made a world of different to them.


May the feast of the Presentation the Lord celebrated today give us a desire to long for him and enable us to recognize him when he is presented to us no matter in what form and colour he is presented.


Dr. Benny Thettayil CMI


Homilies Navchetana Apps, the first of its kind is produced and published by Navchetana Communications, Bhopal, India to assist the clergy to preach the World of God and also as a handy spiritual resource for the people of God to reflect on the daily spiritual passages at their convenience. You can download this on your Android phone from Google play and you can see the Gospel reflections of the whole year. The size of this app is just 2.5 MB. We welcome your suggestions and contributions to server you better.

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Homilies Navchetana is an initiative of Navchetana Communications, Bhopal, India. We have been sending the Sunday and daily homilies last four years. We are grateful to you for your cooperation and encouraging comments. Navchetana is committed to spread the Good News of Jesus Christ through modern media and performing arts. Through our Web TV, audio and video productions and stage programmes we take the Gospel message to the ends of the earth. Make a donation and be a part of this noble mission.


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