Friday, Christmas Weekday
(I John 2:29-3:6; John 1:29-34)
Even when humans admit to sin, they often present excuses. They can say that their sins are small compared to others’. Or they may blame others for causing them to sin. Sometimes they claim that they could not have avoided the sin. These excuses or the outright denial of sinning are tragic in a way. They add up to a denial of the need for a savior from sin. In other words they separate the persons from an intimate relationship with Jesus.
Both readings today emphasize that Jesus came to save humans from their sins. The first reading says outright, “… (Jesus) was revealed to take away sins…” In the gospel seeing Jesus, John the Baptist says, “’Behold the Lamb of God who takes away the sin of the world.’” That “sin of the world” is nothing less than the collective betrayal of God by every person.
In many places Christmas has degenerated into an end-of-the-year family reunion. It should be more than that with us Christians. We celebrate the one who came to take away our sins. Through Jesus’ death and resurrection we are being formed into God’s daughters and sons. The process presumes that we recognize our sins and turn to Christ for forgiveness.