Now is the time

Our text from the 5th Sunday in Lent (Year B) is located in the final section of the “Book of Signs” in the Gospel according to John. You can read a full commentary here. As a bit of refresher, the seven signs in John’s Gospel are:

Through the story of the raising of Lazarus we already know that Jesus has power over death, but in this gospel account it is revealed that He will give life through death. A death that is quickly approaching as this gospel account occurs after Jesus’ entry into Jerusalem that we celebrate on Palm Sunday of the Lord’s Passion. Continue reading

Heaven and Earth

In today’s first reading from Isaiah, the prophet is speaking to the Jewish people in exile in Babylon (or soon thereafter) and reminding them of their mission to be a light to the world of the goodness and justice of the God of the Covenant. Isaiah holds up an image of a “new heavens and a new earth” – a similar image to one spoken of the Book of Revelation in the New Testament…. and those images, I suspect, are quite different from ones we hold in our minds. Images that propose for us, heaven is somewhere not here, a place we hope to go to when we pass from this mortal coil, where God lives. Earth becomes the transit stop on the way. All of this is mingled into the idea of the Second Coming of Jesus. When this latter topic is brought up, I will often say, “That’s right…. but have you ever heard of the Second Going?” Continue reading