HOMILY FOR THE 2ND SUNDAY OF ADVENT YEAR A. (3)

peace









HOMILY FOR THE 2ND SUNDAY OF ADVENT YEAR A.

THEME: Living together in Peace through Knowledge of God.

BY: Fr. Luke Ijezie.

Isaiah 11:1-10
Psalm: 72:1-2,7-8,12-13,17
Romans 15:4-9
Matthew 3:1-12

The 2nd Sunday of Advent, which we celebrate today, stresses inner conversion as a prerequisite to harmonious living. It is only when hearts change for the better that people begin to appreciate one another and work for a peaceful society. Such change of heart is achieved through a better knowledge of God. This is a basic point in all the readings of today.

1. The first reading from the Messianic text of Isa 11:1-10 paints what looks like a dream world, where the strong and the weak will live together in peace without molestation, and where erstwhile enemies will live as friends. This is represented with images of ferocious animals living in harmony with weaker ones. A very significant part of the text says: “There shall be no harm or ruin on all my holy mountain; for the earth shall be filled with knowledge of the LORD, as water covers the sea” (11:9). What brings about real positive change in human relationships is the knowledge of God. A godless society is a heartless society. The Messiah, Son of David, comes to teach humanity the compassionate face of God and what it means to know God. This knowledge will help all to know how intimately related they are as brothers and sisters. The strong will then begin to care for the weak and will no longer oppress or exploit them. There will no more be discrimination against people with disabilities. Justice and peace will embrace. As the Psalmist says, “In his days justice shall flourish, and abundance of peace, till the moon will be no more” (Psalm 72:7). Worldly messiahs promise abundance of peace through improved social conditions, but the message of today is that real peace depends on the knowledge of God in the society, as that is what truly changes hardened hearts.

RELATED: HOMILY FOR THE 2ND SUNDAY OF ADVENT YEAR A

2. The second reading from Rom 15:4-9 speaks with the same accent when it says that only through knowing and imitating Christ can we think in harmony and live with one accord.

3. In the Gospel text from Matt 3:1-12, John the Baptist urges his people to clear the accumulated refuse dumps from their hearts in order to give room for God’s entry, as the divine presence is the only force that can change the society for better.

4. All these readings speak with one voice on the centrality of the knowledge of God for harmony in the human society. Our main role as Christians is to fill the world with this authentic knowledge of God. It is only through genuine knowledge of God that human beings come to know themselves better. They come to know how united and interconnected they are as one family and as having God as a common Father, irrespective of race, language, ethnicity, nationality and culture. It is then that the wolf, a violent, rapacious beast, and can live together with a weak and innocent animal as the lamb without harm.
May God fill us with His Spirit so that we may continue to live in love and peace as brothers and sisters!

 

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