Our meeting with God will no longer be in one particular place, but in a new temple: the body of the resurrected Jesus

3rd Sunday of Lent

Ex. 20: 1-17; Psalm 18; 1Cor. 1: 22-25; John 2:13-25

Read: The Jews then told Jesus: “What sign can you show us to justify that you are able to do that?” Jesus replied: “Destroy this temple, and in three days I will rebuild it”. The Jews replied: “It has taken forty-six years to build this temple, and you are going to raise it up in three days?” But he was speaking of the temple of his body.

Reflect: What Jesus did in the temple in today’s Gospel reading is not only a correction of the abuses that were taking place in the temple of Jerusalem, but is an announcement that the temple’s time had passed, meaning the assured presence of God and salvation. Our meeting with God will no longer be in one particular place, but in a new temple: the body of the resurrected Jesus.

When He raised His Son from the dead, the Father placed the cornerstone of this new sanctuary. St. Peter exhorted the new baptised that they would be baptised in Christ: “Draw near to him, who is a living stone that was discarded by the builders, but chosen by God as the beloved stone. And all of you likewise, like a living stone, build in a spiritual house, a sacred priesthood, so that you will offer spiritual sacrifices pleasing to God through Jesus Christ”. (1 Peter 2:4-5).

The only sacrifices acceptable to God are acts of love; generous service to others, especially to the poor, sick, alienated persons; those that are hungry and those that have nothing with which to clothe themselves. The one who stands by his brother so as to serve him, will be making a priestly gesture: together with Christ, God’s temple, that leads to heaven that sweet fragrance of an offering which is pure and sacred.

Pray: In celebrating the Eucharist, Lord, you give us an assurance of heavenly things that are still hidden from our eyes, and even on this earth You fill us with spiritual food; we humbly ask You that what takes place within us under the veil of mystery, we carry out through our good deeds.

Act: “Do not forget to do good to others, and to share between yourselves what you have, because God will be delighted with such sacrifices”. (Jews 13:16)

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