Sixth Sunday of Easter (Rosalino Reyes Dizon)

Ross Reyes DizonHomilies and reflections, Year CLeave a Comment

Author: Rosalino Reyes Dizon · Year of first publication: 2013.
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Live by the Spirit (Gal 5, 16)

The devil induced an apostle to betray Jesus.  The father of lies filled the hearts of Ananias and Sapphira that they blatantly lied, although the couple belonged to the community of believers who were of one mind and heart and had everything in common.

These examples show that we cannot do without the other Advocate besides Jesus. We need the Spirit of truth to defend us against the ruler of this world.  Satan should have no power over us just as he did not have it over Jesus (Jn 14, 30).  There cannot be accord between Christ and Belial (2 Cor 6, 15).  The Father and the Son will not make their dwelling with anyone who already belongs to the devil.

So that we may be God’s dwelling, those of us who seek to love Jesus should, of course, hear and keep his words.  It is the Holy Spirit who equips us for this, who makes us perceive the real presence of the Risen One.  He teaches us everything and reminds us of everything that Jesus has said.

Without this teaching and this reminder, we run the risk besides of thinking as worldly human beings do.  Thus we will end up collaborating with the tempter who tried mightily to make Jesus stray from his mission and continues to put obstacles before us.  There is the danger too that we set the Holy Spirit and collegiality aside and make our personal opinions and likes or dislikes pass for infallible doctrines.  We will thus be imitating those false brothers who wanted to impose circumcision.

We are in need of the Holy Spirit lest we mistake the peace Jesus gives for that of the world.  The worldly “Roman peace,” for instance, is founded on conquest, destruction, exploitation, oppression, terror.  Christian peace, on the other hand, means humiliation, obedience even to death on the cross, not quenching a smoldering wick.

The Holy Spirit comforts us poor people who are like bruised reeds.  He takes us to where we can have a vision of the Holy City, radiant and gleaming with God’s splendor, so that we may be encouraged and have the conviction that the Lamb that was slain will in the end conquer the great Harlot, the Beast and the merchants who promote consumerism and have the stamped image of the beast in order to buy or sell.  Though they still persecute us, the day will come when they will be sentenced to the abyss forever.

We need the Holy Spirit above all so that we may accept that the glorification of Jesus and his followers consists precisely in suffering at the hands of the ruler of this world and his minions.  Jesus is made manifest not in the spectacular theophanies in accordance with worldly expectations that perhaps were behind the question of the one who wanted to know why Jesus was ready to reveal himself to the disciples but not to the world (Jn 14, 22).  Jesus reveals himself glorified and drawing everyone to himself in his being lifted up from the earth.  This lifting up spells as well judgment on the world and the driving out of its ruler (Jn 12, 31-32).

Unless the Paraclete guides us to all truth, including the truth of the crucifixion that the world cannot bear, the meaning of the Lord’s Supper would be lost on us.  Nor would we appreciate something St. Vincent de Paul said:  “I no more trust in human means for divine things than I do in the devil” (Coste II, 391).

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