Date: Sunday, January 19, 2020
We can both know and not know another person. We shouldn’t be too surprised to hear John “the Baptist” pointing out Jesus: “Behold, the Lamb of God, who takes away the sin of the world” and then acknowledging: “I did not know him, but the reason why I came baptizing with water was that he might be made known to Israel.” Can we ever truly know another person? Can we even truly know ourselves? After John the Baptist points out Jesus as the “Lamb of God” and then as “Son of God,” two of the disciples of John break from him and follow Jesus. Jesus asks them: “What are you looking for?” They reply: “Teacher – where are you staying?” Jesus invites: “Come and see.”
We notice in the Gospel according to John "the Evangelist," one’s coming to know Jesus entails spending time with him. Consider the Disciples of the Baptist, Nicodemus, the Woman at the well in Samaria, Martha & Mary of Bethany, Simon Peter and Mary of Magdala. The hero of the Gospel is the Beloved Disciple. The Beloved Disciple is unnamed but identified as “the one Jesus loved.” Love is the key to knowing another person.
As we ready for Holy Communion we pray the words of John the Baptist: “Behold the Lamb of God who takes away the sins of the world.” And then we add: “Blessed are those called to the Supper of the Lamb.” Our reception of Holy Communion is both an experience of our loving and knowing Jesus and of Jesus loving and knowing us.
As we leave the Christmas Season behind and enter “Ordinary Time” when Sundays are ordered by number let us resolve to spend more time with Jesus and discover the Beloved Disciple has a counterpart today – you and me.