Once a disillusioned pilgrim
returned from the Holy Land lamenting the conditions he encountered.Not only was there strife between Jews and
Arabs, but hawkers constantly besieged him with souvenir trinkets.Even in Bethlehem, where Jesus was born on a
serene night, he found conflict.The man
marveled at how times have changed, but he only had to read the Scriptures
closely to realize that trouble is nothing new to the area.
Although the Gospel of Luke
depicts a tranquil setting for Jesus’ birth, there is much evidence of conflict
during New Testament times.King Herod
as a tyrant who worried little if at all in ordering his people killed.Roman occupation caused increasing civic
unrest until an open rebellion erupted a generation after Jesus’ death.Of course, there is the acrimonious debate
between Jesus and the Pharisees which is believed to reflect trouble between
the first Christians and their Jewish counterparts.
In spite of all this conflict,
the writer of the First Letter of John offers a testimony of hope.Much more than a dream or vision, the
testimony involves a real human being – one he looked upon with his eyes, heard
with his ears, and touched with his hands.He is saying that in the midst of turmoil, Jesus offers eternal life to faithful
Bilingual Roman Catholic priest of the Southern Dominican Province. Currently serving as rector of the St. Martin de Porres National Shrine and Institute in Memphis, TN. The "homilettes" on this website are completely his work. He may be contacted for preaching at firstname.lastname@example.org.
Telephone: (415) 279-9234.