Wednesday, September 19, 2012

Blog 276 Jesus, Human / Divine

Blog #  276  Jesus, Human / Divine

Could you ever imagine it, that God would be sitting on the ground calling a puppy over to Him to play with Him?
Yes that is hard or impossible to imagine. Yet that as a possibility is exactly what we believe of Jesus, capable and willing to share our life on earth, yet keeping His identity as God. It is unimaginable, but real for us by faith
Jesus grew hungry and tired. He ate fish and fell asleep on a cushion in Peter' s boat. He had to walk from Jerusalem to Jericho. He enjoyed the puppies of His day. Yet Jesus is God! In Jesus was all of the human that we know within ourselves with the sole exception of sin. Yet the PERSON of Jesus is divine.
As one of us, Jesus invites us to follow His example of human goodness generosity mercy humility and   prayer. As divine He invites us to share God's very life/Love through Him, with Him and in Him in a very real way. We are invited to experience Jesus not just in a better human life but additionally in a NEW life.

Born from above by faith, we are a NEW CREATION, GOD'S HOLY TEMPLE, THE BODY OF CHRIST, BRANCHES ON A VINE. ( Jn. 3:11; I:11ff; I Cor: 619; Gal 2:20; II Cor 5:17; Rom 12:3ff; I Cor 10:17; Jn. 15:5 and other texts). Here  is the meaning of the supernatural gift we refer to as Sanctifying Grace.
As we begin to reflect upon and understand this new identity of ours it begins to appear almost as unimaginable and as marvelous as the notion of God sitting on the ground and calling a puppy over to Him to play with Him.

The thoughts we are sharing here are some that came to me when I was reflecting on the liturgical readings we used on the 22 Sunday of Ordinary Time back in 2009. ( Deut. 4:1,2,6,8; James I: 17,18,21,22,27; Mark 7: 1-8,14,15,21-23).

Moses tells the people that obedience to the commands of God will bring them a new life and entrance into a new land which God wishes to give them. The process leads to a wisdom on the part of God's People that is a source of inspiration and wonder to their neighbors.

Our life in Jesus is designed to do a similar thing for us. A new patience is to be ours, parent with children, Pastors with people, neighbor with neighbor. A new faithfulness will be ours, a new generosity, a new mercy, a new prayer, a new "land'.

The entire letter of James, and the portion I have referred to above is very clear on the practical effects of our new birth in Jesus. "welcome the word that has taken root in you with its power...Act on it. If all you do is listen to it, you are deceiving yourselves."

And in the Gospel reading Jesus very clearly faults anyone who is taken up merely with the externals of obedience and not its faithful obedient love. Good works done for show can be an obstacle to holiness. Playing with a puppy done out of joy can be a religious experience.

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