Reflection on Scripture Third Sunday of Advent Gospel B

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 Third Sunday of Advent: Gospel B

A man named John was sent from God. He came for testimony, to testify to the light, so that all might believe through him. He was not the light, but came to testify to the light. 

· John the Baptist was sent from God to give witness about Jesus, the Light of the world. In John’s case, this testimony was not only by words. He gave his life as well.

· To what extent are we the reflection of Jesus to others, testifying to the Light?

And this is the testimony of John. When the Jews from Jerusalem sent priests and Levites (to him) to ask him, "Who are you?" he admitted and did not deny it, but admitted, "I am not the Messiah." 

· The people for centuries had been waiting for the Messiah. When John begins to preach and attract people to himself, some of them began to speak of him as the Messiah.

· John knew who he was and who he was not. He embraced his true identity

So they asked him, "What are you then? Are you Elijah?"  

· There was some speculation that Elijah would come back before the Messiah. Even though he denies this, Jesus later on will affirm that John came in the spirit of Elijah.

· Jesus also was compared to Elijah in Matt 16.

And he said, "I am not." "Are you the Prophet?" He answered, "No." 

· This refers to the prophet promised by Moses in Deut 18:15, 18.

· Jesus also was compared to the prophet in Matt 16.

So they said to him, "Who are you, so we can give an answer to those who sent us? What do you have to say for yourself?" He said: "I am 'the voice of one crying out in the desert, "Make straight the way of the Lord,"' as Isaiah the prophet said." 

· John sees himself as the forerunner or precursor of the Messiah.  His self-identity was clear.

· Is our self-identity in Christ likewise clear?

Some Pharisees were also sent. They asked him, "Why then do you baptize if you are not the Messiah or Elijah or the Prophet?" John answered them, "I baptize with water; but there is one among you whom you do not recognize, the one who is coming after me, whose sandal strap I am not worthy to untie." This happened in Bethany across the Jordan, where John was baptizing. 

· How often do you give witness about Jesus to others?

· What concrete actions do you feel that this gospel is asking you to do in your life?

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