YEAR A: HOMILY FOR SATURDAY OF THE 4TH WEEK OF LENT
HOMILY THEME: AUTHENTICATION OF HIS MESSIAHSHIP
BY: Fr. Benny Tuazon
HOMILY: (Jn. 7:40-53) Saturday of the Fourth Week of Lent, Day 32nd of Lent
In today’s Gospel Jesus was being the subject of scrutiny of the Jews and the leaders. There were those who had accepted Him and were benefiting from His words and actions. But there were those who would rather judge Him by His origin and relatives. Unfortunately, such reaction and objection will reach the point to plot the killing of Jesus. Controversy marred the last days of Jesus. But as we have said earlier, Jesus remained bold and convicted in His mission. He did not care if it will entail His death. The completion of His mission was paramount. Interesting in the readings is the contrast in their response against their adversaries. Jeremiah, in the first reading, sought revenge against his enemies. Jesus, on the other hand, forgave everyone. It was an authentication of His Messiahship. To forgive in those circumstances is the best sign of divinity.
There are those of us who are still having some doubts regarding the divinity of Jesus. Our brothers and sisters in the Iglesia ni Cristo have this belief. What does it take to make us believe He is the Messiah? What more should He do to convince us of His divinity? The difficulty of the answer to the above questions is because nothing is sufficient to make us believe. There will always be doubts and question. At most, His utterance of forgiveness and resurrection should lead us to it. Who, after going through what the Lord Jesus experienced, can still forgive? And who had resurrected from the dead? Of course, the element of faith is constitutive of this. Believing in Jesus as divine is a matter of faith and experience.
The legion officer, the thief, the fishermen, tax collectors, prostitutes, etc. saw and experienced conversion. For them, what Jesus had said and the miracles he had made were enough for them to believe in Him as the Messiah. Specially forgiveness. We claim that erring is human and forgiving is divine. No. Forgiveness is as human as it is divine. Forgiveness is not a matter of feeling but a matter of will, like love. If we can love our enemies, we can also forgive. I had said a lot already about forgiveness in the previous reflections. I believe those of you who had read them had a lot to say. But in the context of the Gospel, let me offer that Jesus’ forgiveness was consistent with His mission and nature. He was sent to save. Thus, forgiveness was called for. He is God. Thus, He meant to save everyone. Holy Week is near. Let us come to terms with our faith in the Lord. May the experience of His forgiveness make us believe.