Friday after the Epiphany
(I John 5:5-13; Luke 5:12-16)
The Christmas season will end this Sunday with the Feast of the Baptism of the Lord. Perhaps all of us have participated in its colossal gift exchange. We may ask ourselves what was the greatest gift that we received. But there is no need to weigh the running shoes from Aunt Anne against the concert tickets from Uncle John. The greatest gift of any kind, in any season, from anyone is God’s gift of His Son. Jesus has not only shown us the way to eternal happiness but paved it with his own flesh.
Both readings today testify to the gift of Jesus. The Letter of John names the three witnesses to his accomplishment. Water refers to his human life. He told the world of God’s love and performed marvelous deeds to demonstrate it. Blood represents his sacrifice on the cross. By dying there he overcame the grip of Satan on the world. With the descent of the Spirit on his disciples, Jesus has been preached throughout the world.
The gospel testifies to Jesus’ fame being spread by his healings. It sounds too good to be true. It also demands a continual response of gratitude on our part. We may want to put it out of our minds and concentrate on how to thank Aunt Anne and Uncle John. But the testimonies are undeniable. We must show due appreciation to God for the gift of His Son.