Third Monday in Advent - December 17th
As we begin this last full week before Christmas, we draw closer to the Incarnation, the great moment in history when “the Word became flesh” [John 1:14]. Today’s readings seem to highlight two dualisms: that of servant/king and human/divine. Each of the readings mentions in some way the notion of sovereignty. The reading from Genesis emphasizes the kingship of Judah while the psalmist prays that God will bless his ruler with wisdom, peace, and benevolence. The Gospel reading reports the royal lineage of Jesus by noting that He is a descendant of Kings David and Solomon. And yet Jesus complicated the notion of kingship. Rather than being served as king, He associated kingship with serving others. In particular, He assisted those most shunned by society and those most in need, i.e. the poor, sick, suffering, and sinners. The readings remind us that Jesus embodied both king and servant of all.
The second dualism that emerges from today’s readings is that of the humanity/divinity of Christ. The Gospel reading in particular makes clear Jesus’ human roots. St. Matthew details forty-two generations of real, mortal families to whom Christ traced His lineage. A powerful lesson here is that Jesus was one of us in all things [except sin]! He knew the joys and challenges of family life, felt the support and betrayal of friends, and experienced the laughter and sacrifice of daily life. There is great comfort to be found in knowing that Jesus can truly relate to us when we turn to Him.
May we always be inspired by the dualism of the servant/king and find Christ the King in service to others. And may the dualism of Jesus’ humanity/Divinity draw us closer to the Savior born in Bethlehem who embraced our humanity while remaining the true Son of God.
Teresa G. Wojcik
Education and Counseling