Hb 10. 11-18; Ps 110; Mk 1. 1-20
Homily of Fr. Paul Panaretos, S.J.
he preacher of the Letter to the Hebrews underscored Jesus’ once for all/1/ sacrifice in to-day’s selection. We recall that the preacher reminded us that Jesus accomplished for us by his self-sacrifice transformation of our inmost selves and won for us access to God’s life.
To appreciate Jesus priestly act and its effectivefinality we can recall what the preacher said at the start of the Letter to the Hebrews about Jesus: When [Jesus] had accomplished purification from sins, he took his seat at the right hand of the Majesty on high, as far superior to the angels as the name he has inherited is more excellent than theirs./2/ Jesus priestly act was final: Jesus had accomplished purification from sins. Jesus, our pioneer,/3/ entered into God’s presence by his priestly act. In royal imagery taken from a psalm the preacher explored throughout his exploration of the priestly act of Jesus, Jesus took his seat at the right hand of the Majesty on high. That reechoed today as we heard that Jesus took his seat forever at the right hand of God.
High-priest Jesus contrasts with every priest of the law of Sinai, who stands daily at his ministry, offering frequently those same sacrifices that can never take away sins. Again, as the preacher noted yesterday, repetition failed to do what Jesus had accomplished for us.
Sharing in divine glory Jesus did first. In being first, Jesus prepared our way to share that glory. His life among us was open to God’s desires, and Jesus sought to fulfill them in his words and deeds. The more we fix our eyes on Jesus, the more we allow his faithful obedience to shape us. Our lives give witness to Jesus, the pioneer of our salvation,/4/ as we continue on our pilgrimage through life.
1. Hebrews 10.10.
2. Hebrews 1.3b-4.
3. Hebrews 2.10.
Wiki-image of lily by Denis Barthel is used according to Creative Commons Attribution ShareAlike 2.0 Germany license.