The Second Sunday of Advent

What other time or season can or will the Church ever have but that of Advent? — Karl Barth

The son of a Levitical priest. An apocalyptic prophet. An ascetic. A baptizer. A cousin of Jesus of Nazareth. A resistor of Roman tyranny and injustice. A champion of the promise of God to rule not only his people Israel, but the entire world. A prisoner. A casualty of Roman imperial violence.

This historical figure of John the baptizer has forever wedded itself to the story of Jesus. One cannot tell the story of Jesus without John. In fact, the Church puts the life and message of John right at the beginning of the Church Year as a kind of “introduction” to the gospel of Jesus. To tell the good news of the kingdom that Jesus came to actualize is impossible without John.

But why? Why is the message and ministry of John at the Jordan river so integral to the life, ministry and message of Jesus? Remember, Jesus came to John to be baptized by him… there is something in the ministry of John that even Jesus had to submit to in order to “fulfill all righteousness”. And this is after all what the kingdom of God is all about—to fill all things with righteousness.

See you on Sunday.




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