March 15: Third Sunday of Lent

Raymond Balze, Jesus Clears the Temple, Musée Ingres, Montauban

Jesus answered them, "Destroy this temple, and in three days I will raise it up (NRSV, John 2:19)."

Gospel: John 2: 13-25

Let us pray.

Father, Jesus told his challengers: "Destroy this temple, and in three days I will raise it up." We realize now that he was not speaking of a building at all. A building may be set aside as sacred space to assist us in concentrating on your presence but you do not live in a building. You live in a person. You live in the person of Jesus who was speaking of his own body that might pass through physical death but, because of its divine life, could not be conquered by death.

If we say “yes,” Father, to the gift of your own life, offered to us at every moment at the depth of our being, even in our sinfulness, then these words of Jesus can also be our words: "Destroy this temple, and in three days I will raise it up." Death, enemy that she may often seem to be, because of the divine life that you share with us, is really our sister and passage to a fuller life of union with You. Death cannot touch us, if, with Jesus, we live in union with you, Father, in the Holy Spirit, because we are already resurrected in this life, as Jesus was resurrected at every moment of his earthly existence.

Father, we live in the already but not yet. May we always respond to your gift and call, accepting your divine life into our own at every moment and growing constantly in it, resurrected already in this life and called to an even greater resurrection in the world to come.

Through Christ our Lord. Amen.

No comments: