First Reading: 1Jn 5:5-13; Psalm: 147 R. v. 12a; Gospel: Mark 1:7-11
THE THREE WITNESSES
BY FR VALENTINE NNAMDI EGBUONU, MSP
In the first reading of today, John pointed to three witnesses that testified that Jesus Christ is the Son of God; the Spirit, the water, and the blood. Jesus was baptised by John in the waters of the Jordan as narrated in the gospel reading. It was at his baptism that God the Father revealed him as his beloved Son while the Spirit descended on him as in the form of a dove.
Throughout the ministry of Jesus, his works testified that he was divine. His preaching, miracles, and healings were all inspired by the Spirit. Before his death, he instituted the Eucharistic meal by giving us his body and blood. He re-enacted this sacrifice by the pouring of his blood on the cross. While Jesus hung on the cross, his side was pierced and blood and water gushed out (Jn 19:34-35). The blood was the gift of the Eucharist and the water the symbol of our baptism. So, in summary, the waters of baptism and the Spirit initiated the ministry of Jesus; and the blood of his cross culminated it all.
These three witnesses to the divinity of Jesus Christ; the Spirit, the water, and the blood are also the first three sacraments that fully initiate us into the Christian community. By the washing of baptismal water we are adopted into the Church. Through the Eucharist we are spiritually nourished. And through confirmation we are strengthened by the Holy Spirit to continually bear witness to Christ by words and deeds. Our faith in these sacraments should be taken seriously for our salvation comes from them. If the Spirit, the water, and the blood bear witness to the divinity of Jesus Christ; it goes to show also that these three witnesses are signs of our adoption into God’s family.
PRAYER FOR THE DAY
Lord Jesus, strengthen our faith in the sacraments of the Church which you gave us as a sign of your presence in the world. Amen.