Behold I Send My Messenger before Your Face
The gospel for this coming Sunday (Third Sunday in Advent) is Luke 7:18-28. In this reading we see two of John’s disciples coming to Jesus concerning questions that John had.
John’s was locked up in a dungeon-like prison. His future looked very bleak. In that state the devil planted some serious doubts about Jesus and how Jesus ministry fit with what he, John had done to prepare the way for Jesus. The devil made it look like Jesus had let John down. And so, John asks: “Are you the one who is to come, or shall we look for another?” (7:20) Very, very serious questions.
Jesus could have rebuked John for having these doubts. But, Jesus gives John an answer that consists of concreate visible proofs like: “Go tell John what you have seen and heard: the blind receive their sight, the lame walk, lepers are cleansed, and the deaf hear, the dead are raised up, the poor have the good news preached to them.” 7:22-23).
With all the craziness in our world, doubt can creep into everybody’s mind, even the minds of those who are Christians. While there are not some the miracles mentioned above, God lovingly still gives us many proofs that he is there for us at times of uncertainityt. But, we do have the gospel preached to us plus the Sacraments that continue to remind us of how important we are to Jesus.
Just got a facebook message from a friend showing Winnie the Pooh hugging Eeyore with the message of passing hugs on to others. Jesus also uses each of us to hug others when they are in need of some reassurance.
When John’s messengers were gone, Jesus turns to crowd who might have been critical of John. Jesus reminds the people of John’s vital ministry of being the messenger whom Jesus had sent before them. Furthermore, Jesus tells the crowd that there had not been a greater prophet born of a woman.
Having said all that, Jesus had one more powerful note for us when he stated: “yet the one who is least in the kingdom of God is greater than he.” (7:28) That’s us! The Church’s rank-and-file believers enjoy privileges that exceed any bestowed under the old covenant. (TLSB)
Prayer: Dear Lord Jesus, thank you so very much for being there when doubts creep into our hearts and minds. Thank you for showering us with your gifts of Word and Sacraments so that we can overcome any and all doubts that may enter our minds. Amen