Blog # 383 Christian Holiness - 2
After publishing Blog # 382 I had the feeling something was missing. Then in the mail that arrived today two items convinced me that my feeling was correct. What was missing was at least a
partial listing of the various Biblical references that are the foundation and substance of the Biblical revelation of the indwelling of the Holy Trinity and the incorporation of all who are Baptized into the Church as living branches on a living vine.
Both items that arrived in the mail told me part of the current stories of several relatives and friends who do not attend church and feel no need of doing so. In two of the stories there was a recent birth of a daughter. The pictures enclosed in the letters revealed two beautiful healthy babies. I was asked to remember them in my prayer. Then later on in the day I had the opportunity of asking a couple of active practicing Catholics what their notion of holiness was. and then if some of of the references I was intending to use to fill out what I had shared about holiness in Blog # 382 were texts of Scripture with which they were familiar, and whether the texts had any significant practical bearing for them in their lives today. I asked whether these and similar texts were clear to them in identifying them as members of the Church, and how clear to them was our faith in the presence of the Resurrected Jesus living in them, as really as He walked the Streets of Jericho and Jerusalem two thousand years ago, but in a different mode, then in the physical mode of His human experience which was as human and limited as ours, and now in the spiritual and sacramental divine mode of His Resurrected body, free of the physical human restrictions we know on our way to our resurrection.
You can answer such questions for yourself, but I would not be too surprised to find that your answers indicated the same facts the folks to whom I proposed them gave me here today. So I will continue with a brief introduction of some of the texts then ask you to join me in prayer whenever you think of it on behalf of those babies I learned about, and so many more like them being born here in the U.S. and all around the world in this moment of history when they have little chance of learning from their mothers and fathers of the love and meaning of life our Creator has for them, and in the meantime waiting for someone who appreciates it and lives it out in goodness love joy and prayer each day to reach out to them to tell them their experience in conversation, in their example of Christian living, and at least in their prayer.
The proclamation of the angels around the throne of God: Holy, holy. holy is the Lord of hosts. ( Is. 6:3.
Its nature: (God-life) Born again; rebirth; new life; God-life are all terms used to describe an effect of Baptism.
John 3: 1ff. Jesus is in conversation with Nicodemus: "How can a man be born again when he is
John 20:30f :Jesus performed many other signs as well - signs not recorded here - in the presence of His disciples. But these have been recorded to help you believe that Jesus is the
Messiah, the Son of God, so that through this faith you may have life in His name."
John 6:35 I myself am the bread of life.
John 6: 47 he who believes in me has eternal life.
Makes us children of God and brothers in Christ.
John 1:11f To His own He came, yet His own did no receive Him. Any who did receive Him
He empowered to become children of God.
Rom. 8 14ff All who are led by the Spirit of God are sons of God. You did not receive a spirit of
slavery leading you back into fear but a spirit of adoption trough which we cry out
"Abba!" (that is, "Father!"). The Spirit himself gives witness to our spirit that we
are children of God.
1 John 3:1 See what love the Father has bestowed on us in letting us be called children of God!
Yet that is what we are.
1 COR. 6:19 You must know that your body is a temple of the Holy Spirit who is within - the
Spirit you have received from God.
John 14: 23 Anyone who loves Me will be true to my word, and my Father will love him; we
will come to him and make our dwelling place with him."
John 15: 1 - 5 Live on in me as I do in you. No more than a branch can bear fruit of itself apart
from the vine, can you bear fruit apart from me. I am the vine, you are the
Gal. 2: 20 ...and the life I live now is not my own; Christ is living in me.
Rom. 6:4 Through Baptism into His death, we have been buried with Him so that, just as
Christ was raised from the dead by the glory of the Father, we too might live a new
11 Cor. 5:17 If anyone is in Christ, he is a new creation.
Eph. 2:15 Christ created one new man from us who had been two.
Eph. 4: 24 You must put on that new man created in God's image, whose justice and
holiness are born of truth.
Col. 2:13 God gave you new life in company with Christ.
Col. 3:10 What you have done is put aside your old self with its past deeds and put on a
new man, one who grows in knowledge as he is formed anew in the image
of His Creator.
Titus 3:5 He saved us through the baptism of new birth and renewal by the Holy Spirit.
1Peter 1:3,5 Praised be God the Father of our Lord Jesus Christ who in His great mercy
gives us new life...ready to be revealed in the last days.