HOMILY FOR THE 4TH SUNDAY OF THE ADVENT YEAR A.
THEME: The virgin will conceive and give birth to a son and they will call him Emmanuel, ‘God-is-with-us.
BY: Fr. Diotacious Chikontwe SMA.
*READINGS OF THE DAY*
Dear brothers and sisters in Christ, today is already the forth Sunday and last Sunday of the Advent Season. This means that without doubt our Christmas celebration is just around the corner. We have seen that time has passed very fast since we celebrated the first Sunday of Advent Season. It feels like since Yesterday since we started the Advent.
As we end the Advent season this week, the following are the good questions to ask ourselves at this moment, how has our Advent journey been so far? Has it been meaningful and fruitful for us? Has it been good in preparing ourselves for the upcoming celebration of the Nativity or the birth of Our Lord and Saviour, Jesus Christ? Or have we instead been preparing ourselves for Christmas in the wrong way?
*FROM OUR FIRST READING*
In the first reading of this Sunday, we hear the most significant and definitive signs about the Messiah: “A maiden is with child and will soon give birth to a son whom she will call Emmanuel, which means God is with us!” It is important to note that this sign was given to king Ahaz only after he humbled himself by refusing to put God to the test.
*FROM THE SECOND READING*
In our second reading, Paul gives us the news which is about the Son of God who, according to the human nature he took was a descendant of David: it is about Jesus Christ our Lord who, in the order of the spirit, the spirit of holiness that was in him, was proclaimed Son of God in all his power through his resurrection from the dead.
*FROM THE HOLY GOSPEL READING*
In this morning’s gospel reading, there is an emphasis on the name that is to be given to Mary and Joseph’s child. The angel reveals to Joseph that the child to be born of Mary, his betrothed, is to be given two names, ‘Jesus’ and ‘Emmanuel’. Names in the Hebrew conveyed a certain meaning. The name Jesus means ‘the Lord saves’. The angel tells Joseph that he must name his child ‘Jesus, because the child to be born of Mary is the one who is to ‘save his people from their sins’. Jesus came to deal with our sins, to unburden us of them. He spoke of himself as the shepherd who came to seek and to save the lost.
*WHAT DO WE LEARN FROM THE SUNDAY LITURGY OF TODAY*
The lessons we can learn from the readings of today, include that we must allow God to be God without trying to preempt him. Second, we must learn to trust God’s judgment and goodwill for us. Third, we need not run after signs anymore because God has given us the fullness of revelation in Jesus Christ. The fourth is that we must allow ourselves to be instruments through which God could save humanity. So, in whatever capacity God calls us to participate in the economy of salvation, let us cooperate with him as Mary and Joseph did today.
And lastly on this forth Sunday, we focus on the theme and aspect of Love, the Love of God made Man, personified and manifested in Jesus Christ, Our Lord. This theme of Love is arguably the most important of all, as it is the enduring and ever-present Love that God has for each and every one of us is the very reason why we still have Hope in Him, and why we can look forward to His reign of Peace, and for the Joy of His everlasting kingdom and our eternity of true happiness and bliss with Him. Without the Love of God, none of these would and will have been possible.
May our God bless us all through Christ our Lord. Amen.
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