Lenten Reflection: Day 32
Gospel, John 7:1-2, 10, 25-30
The Jews annually celebrated three major feasts: Passover, Pentecost, and Tabernacles. The feast of Tabernacles is also known as the Feast of Booths (Hebrew: Sukkot). During the seventh day of feast, the people dwelt in branched “booths” (or tents), a commemoration of the time when their ancestors lived in tents during the wilderness journey (Lev 23:43).
During the celebrations, the people offered thanksgiving for the temple, the place of worship given to them in the Promised Land (1 Kings 8:2; 12-32). They also gave thanks for the crops harvested that year (Deut 16:13). When the relatives of Jesus urged Him to go to the feast and publicly perform His miracles, He knew that His life would be at risk. So Jesus went in secret and while He was there, He taught in the Temple. Some people knew Jesus’ human origin.
They knew that His home was in Nazareth’ they knew His parents; and they knew His brothers and sisters (close relatives). But popular belief in that day held that the messiah would appear suddenly and no one would know where he had come from. Jesus declared that he had come on his own. He had been sent by God, the one who they did not know.
(Together with God’s word.com commentary)
Jesus cried out as He was teaching in the Temple, ‘You do know God. I know God because God sent me’ (John 7). “Sent in today’s Gospel in the original Greek is apostello. In John’s understanding of Jesus, Jesus is an apostle, sent to come close to all who are broken, outcast, brokenhearted, crushed in anyway. There are more apostles then the twelve disciples. Paul and Barnabas are apostles (Acts of the Apostles). We too are made apostles in our Baptism. We are sent to reach out to the brokenhearted and the crushed, letting Jesus live in our world today through us.
Remember a time when you were brokenhearted or crushed in spirit. Who reached out to you in your suffering? What did that person do for you? When were you aware that God sent (apostello) to you? Thank God for all those people who put flesh on His word in our lives.
(Commentary by School Sisters of Notre Dame)