St. John the Baptist confirms Jesus is the Son of God. Every Catholic man can grow in happiness by rejecting the deadly sin of unrighteous anger and growing in the Virtue of Meekness and by building the Virtue of Prudence so he can wisely seek the Gifts of the Holy Spirit.
2nd Week of Easter – Thursday – Jn 3:31-3
Following Jesus’ powerful actions in Jerusalem during the first Passover of His public ministry, He leads His disciples back to the Jordan River where John the Baptist baptized Him and continues to baptize. The Baptist’s disciples are concerned because all the men are abandoning John and are now turning to Jesus to be baptized by His disciples (Jn 4:2).
The Baptist comforts his disciples by revealing that Jesus is from Heaven, joyfully exclaiming that, Christ “must increase, but I must decrease.” He reiterates that Jesus is, “from above [and] is above all.” In contrast, despite his own miraculous birth to the barren Elizabeth and elderly Zechariah, John confirms the infinite difference between Jesus and himself; Jesus is “above all”, but John is “of the earth” and can only speak of things of the world.
Confirming that Jesus is from Heaven, John reveals that Jesus speaks about what He has seen from God the Father. Despite that some men, perhaps the leaders in Jerusalem, have not yet accepted Jesus, John, without reservation, endorses the revelation of Jesus as “true.” In a revelation of the Trinity, John discloses that Jesus not only speaks the “words” of God the Father, but Jesus is loved by the Father who has given Jesus the dominion and power to give men the Holy Spirit without limit. John reiterates Jesus’ words about salvation and condemnation (Jn 3:16-21): those who believe in the Son of God will have eternal life and those who refuse to obey Jesus will face eternal death, as the wrath of God falls upon them.
Be awed by Jesus Christ
Be motivated to grow in holiness by desiring to please God and by fearing to displease Him: Jesus is the Son of God, a Person of the Trinity, who loves each man perfectly; He has absolute Divine Power over the destiny of every single man; Divine Justice, He will give each man his due, saving those who believe and obey Him, and condemning those who refuse to believe and obey.
Reject anger and seek Meekness in the Spirit
Realize: Fueled by desire for independence and earthly things, men turn from God, seek to expand their territory and continually engage in angry confrontations with others as they battle over territory, be it the control over people or things or the territory of ideas; John the Baptist warns men not to belong to the earth, but to seek the Father, and the Son and the Spirit.
Believe: Consider God’s Gift of the Holy Spirit (CCC 733-736).
Pray: Jesus, Perfection of Meekness, help me build the Virtue of Meekness (a part of Temperance) so I reject the Vice of Anger and more fully rely on the Holy Spirit to help me turn away from earthly things and towards the things of Heaven.
Prudently seek the Gifts of the Holy Spirit
Realize: While the Holy Spirit resides in every Catholic man after Baptism, growing in holiness requires an active effort by a man to continually seek to accept the help of the Holy Spirit in his daily life; to receive the help of the Holy Spirit requires that a man diligently use his reason to prudently make choices to cooperate with the Spirit.
Believe: Reflect upon The Gifts of the Holy Spirit (Fear of the Lord, Piety, Knowledge, Fortitude, Counsel, Understanding and Wisdom; CCC 1830-1832).
Pray: Almighty Father, help me build the Virtue of Prudence so I can use my intellect and will to thoughtfully ask for, receive and deliberately use the gracious and powerful Gifts of the Holy Spirit to grow in holiness each day.