The Gospel Today
Tuesday of the Fourth Week of Easter
The feast of the Dedication was taking place in Jerusalem.
It was winter.
And Jesus walked about in the temple area on the Portico of Solomon.
So the Jews gathered around him and said to him,
“How long are you going to keep us in suspense?
If you are the Christ, tell us plainly.”
Jesus answered them, “I told you and you do not believe.
The works I do in my Father’s name testify to me.
But you do not believe, because you are not among my sheep.
My sheep hear my voice;
I know them, and they follow me.
I give them eternal life, and they shall never perish.
No one can take them out of my hand.
My Father, who has given them to me, is greater than all,
and no one can take them out of the Father’s hand.
The Father and I are one.”
Reflection (Sem. Emmanuel Calumpong):
How secure is your faith and trust in God? Scripture describes God’s word as a “lamp for our feet and a light for our steps” in Psalm 119:105. The Jewish Feast of the Dedication is also called the Festival of Lights or Hannukkah. This feast is held in late December, near the time we celebrate Christmas. This is the time of the year when the day is shortest and the night is at its longest. Jesus used this occasion to declare that He is the true light of the world. In His light we can see who God truly is and we can find the true path to heaven. Jesus also speaks of the tremendous trust He has in God His Father and the tremendous trust we ought to have in Him, our Good Shepherd.
The security Jesus offers is a steadfast relationship with the living God, and membership with His flock, the people of God. Jesus also promises the security of peace and protection from evil and the greatest harm that could befall us, the eternal destruction.
The Lord does not spare us from all trouble. In this life we will experience pain, suffering, sickness, and death. But through these, the Lord will lead us to ultimate victory and safety in His everlasting home. Even in the midst of our sufferings, we can find peace and security, which no one can give except God alone. We can confidently follow the Lord wherever He leads, trusting that nothing can keep us from God if we trust in Him. Have you placed your life securely in God where it belongs?
Lord Jesus, you are the Good Shepherd. In you I place all my hope and I entrust myself to you completely. Increase my confidence in your saving grace and in your abiding presence.