Jesus cryptically reveals His Divinity and mysteriously escapes the attempt to arrest Him at the Feast of the Tabernacles. Every Catholic man can grow in happiness by seeking the Gift of Understanding from the Holy Spirit so he can accept Jesus as the Lord of his life and by growing in the Virtue of Diligence so he can strive in his mission to draw closer to Jesus Christ. 

Liturgy

4th Week of Lent – Friday – Jn 7:1-2, 10, 25-30

Commentary

Following Jesus’ startling revelations of the Eucharist in the Bread of Life Sermon (Jn 6:22-59), many of His disciples lost faith in Him. After rejecting His brethren’s disbelief and their challenges to Him to perform miraculous works at the Feast of the Tabernacles in Jerusalem (v 3-9 omitted from the Liturgy), Jesus later walks the 100 miles to Jerusalem alone, traveling in private to avoid scrutiny. The Feast of the Tabernacles was a seven-day Jewish religious festival in Jerusalem which commemorated the fall harvest and God’s provisioning of Israel during the Exodus.

Arriving in Jerusalem, Jesus preaches in the Temple, dividing people; some are awed and some accuse Jesus of being demon-possessed (v 11-24, omitted from the Liturgy). The plot to kill Jesus is widely known and people are surprised and confused when Jesus boldly teaches in the Temple, ignoring those who wish to kill Him. Some wonder why the Jewish leaders have not seized Christ, speculating the leaders secretly know that Jesus is the long-awaited Messiah. Others believe that Jesus cannot be the Messiah, for they believe the Messiah will be mysteriously raised from hidden obscurity, or come from Bethlehem; ironically, Jesus has mysteriously come from Heaven, had indeed been born in Bethlehem, and raised in obscurity in the small backwaters village of Nazareth.

Jesus challenges the crowd’s confusion about His origins, but only offers ambiguous references to His divinity, revealing that He (Jesus) has been sent by another “He”, a cryptic reference to God the Father. Despite Jesus’ purposeful veiled reference, His answer it sufficiently understood, and is wrongly interpreted as blasphemous (Jesus is actually God), and the authorities try to violently seize and arrest Him. Mysteriously, they are unable to arrest Jesus because He is divinely protected and will not allow His Passion until the time of His choosing (“His hour”). Because the authorities are unable to arrest Him and because of His many signs, large numbers of men come to believe He is the Messiah.

Be awed by Jesus Christ

Despite the murderous threats of the Jews who want to keep Jesus out of Jerusalem for the major Feast of the Tabernacles, marvel at the Divine Prudence of Jesus as He shrewdly anticipates and Courageously executes His plan to fulfill His Religious responsibility (a part of Justice) of praising His Father in Jerusalem; be awed to by His mysterious Power to thwart the attempts of the Jews to arrest Him. 

Accept Jesus as the Lord of your life

Realize: As during the Incarnation, today, great numbers of men are totally confused about the identity of Jesus, thinking He is a myth, or just a smart and moral Jewish rabbi from ancient days; they fail to grasp the reality that Jesus is the Lord God and Savior of Man. 

Believe: Reflect upon the reality that Jesus Christ is the Lord (CCC 430-455).

Pray: Holy Spirit, give me the Gift of Understanding so I know and always remember and that Jesus Christ is the Lord, the Son of God and Savior of Man, who desires and has the power to grant me eternal life. 

Make it your mission to draw closer to Christ

Realize: Every Catholic man’s mission in life is to draw ever closer to Jesus Christ.  

Believe: Reflect upon the truth that Knowing Christ is the Heart of Catechesis (CCC 426-429, 1691-1698).

Pray: Jesus Christ, help me build the Virtue of Diligence (a part of Temperance) so I have a daily discipline to know You better by persisting in prayer, and studying Scripture, and draw closer to You in the frequent reception of the Sacraments