daily biblical sermons

Fr. Steven Scherrer
Homily of Thursday, 6th Week of the Year, February 19, 2009
Gen 9:1-13; Ps 101; Mk 8:27-33

"And he began to teach them that the Son of Man must suffer many things, and be rejected by the elders and the chief priests and the scribes, and be killed, and after three days rise again" (Mk 8:31).

It is for this that Jesus Christ came into the world, to redeem us by his death on the cross. His death on the cross was his great sacrifice to the Father, his great act of worship, the pouring out of his life in love and self-gift to his Father, a perfect act of adoration that perfectly pleased the Father and won for us our redemption, the forgiveness of all our sins. Christ died as a man, for men. The Father then sent the Holy Spirit upon him, raising him from the dead, and he poured out this same Spirit upon all who believe in his Son, justifying and sanctifying them.

At the same time, his death on the cross satisfied divine justice by paying the price due for our sins, that is, suffering their just penalty. Thus he freed us from the death due to us in justice for our sins, his death substituting for our death, thus saving us from eternal death for our sins, from the death of separation from God, and from the death of the suffering of guilt. In him, therefore, is our freedom and new life. His death justifies us from our sins, washing us in his blood poured out for us, that we may walk in the newness of life as his new creation.

In the cross is our salvation, and in his resurrection is our illumination, for now we can walk in its light, with the risen Christ illumining us from within (2 Cor 4:6). He is our illumination in his resurrection; and his gift of the Holy Spirit, which he gives us from the Father, where he is seated in glory, rejoices us like rivers of living water running through our stomach (Jn 7:37-39).

This is the new life which we proclaim in Jesus Christ through his death and resurrection. This is our proclamation, our message, which renews the human heart. This is the good news which we are sent to proclaim to every creature (Mk 16:15). We are sent to renew the human race through our proclamation of the good news of the salvation of God in Jesus Christ. We proclaim the liberation from sin and guilt, our two greatest enemies. We preach a new and illumined life in Jesus Christ.

Christ wants to live in us to transform us into new creatures (2 Cor 5:17); and he wants to praise and worship his Father with us in the offering of himself, made present for us in the eucharist. Thus does he renew us through his death and resurrection.




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