LET OUR CRY FOR HELP REACH YOU, LORD
(Tuesday April 9, 2019)
In the first reading of today, God tells Moses to mount a bronze serpent so that those who looked at it were healed from deadly serpent bites. What the Israelites suffered here was as a result of their lack of faith and trust in God which led them to speak against God and Moses. One thing interesting in this narrative is that when the chosen people realized that they have sinned against God and his servant Moses, they came to Moses and said “We have sinned by speaking against the Lord and against you. Intercede for us with the Lord to save us from these serpents. Moses interceded for the people and the Lord answered him” From this, we can see that it is in the nature of God to forgive us always, whenever we sinned against Him. Mind you, this is not a license for us to be wallowing in sin with the notion that He must always forgive us whenever we come back to Him. No! Let us always strive to do good always than swimming in the ocean of sin. Also, the role Moses played here is another practical lesson for all of us.
Despite the ill-treatments Moses has already received from this stubborn and stiff-necked generation of the chosen people, any time they sinned against God and against him and come pleading to forgive them, Moses always obliges them even asks God to have mercy on them as well. What a wonderful personality, a kindhearted man in the person of Moses. This is exactly the role Christ our Saviour assumed not only to the Jewish people but to the entire world. Christ and Moses as far as forgiveness is concerned remained a reference point to us and to the whole world. We are called to emulate them in our day to day practising of our Christian vocation. The Lenten period also is a favourable time we need to act like the chosen people who realized how grievous their sins are, deemed it fit to return to God asking for forgiveness, transformation, revival, renewal and revitalization.
The Lent is still on and it is not too late to use these remaining days to make amends and return to the Lord in order to live a life of fulfilment in Him. In the Gospel reading, we see Jesus in a dispute with the Jews. His listeners refused to listen to his message: they especially could not understand Him when he talked about his Father in heaven. He warns them that those who persist in their sins will die and that, to be freed from sin, they must believe in him. Indeed, sin and salvation are the stories of our lives: we see both elements at play in our personal narratives.
But it is our salvation that God desires the most: it is for our salvation that Christ came. Jesus alludes to the bronze serpent in the desert which cured those bitten by the serpents sent by God to punish the Israelites for their lack of trust: "When you have lifted up the Son of Man, then you will know that I am He." Just as the Israelites were saved from the serpent bites by looking at the bronze serpent, we are saved by looking at and believing in the crucified Christ.
Let Us Pray: Lord Jesus, give me the grace to acknowledge my sins before you and repent so that I will have life in you. Amen.