Some teachers of the Law and some Pharisees spoke up, «Teacher, we want to see a sign from you». Jesus answered them, «An evil and unfaithful people want a sign, but no sign will be given them except the sign of the prophet Jonah. In the same way that Jonah spent three days and three nights in the belly of the monster fish, so will the Son of Man spend three days and three nights in the depths of the earth. At the judgment, the people of Niniveh will rise with this generation and condemn it, because they reformed their lives at the preaching of Jonah, and here there is greater than Jonah. At the judgment, the Queen of the South will stand up and condemn you. She came from the ends of the earth to listen to the wisdom of Solomon, and here there is greater than Solomon».
«Teacher, we want to see a sign from you»
Fr. Joel PIRES Teixeira
Today, Jesus is tested by 'some teachers of the law and Pharisees' (Mt 12:38; cf. Mc 10; 12), who feel threatened by his person, not because of reasons of faith, but of power. Fearing to lose their influence, they seek to discredit Jesus, by needling Him. These "some" can be quite often ourselves, when we are led by our selfishness and individual interests. Or, just as well, when we look at the Church as a merely human reality and not as a project of God’s love for each one of us.
Jesus’ answer is sharp: «but none will be given» (cf. Mt 12:39), not by fear, but to emphasize and remind them that the "signs" are the relationship of communication and love between God and humanity; it is not an association of interests and individual powers. Jesus evokes that there are many signs given by God; and it is not by challenging or blackmailing Him that He can be reached.
Jesus is the greatest signal. On this day the Word is an invitation for each one of us to humbly understand that only a converted heart turned towards God, can receive, interpret, and see this sign which is Jesus. Humility is the reality that not only brings us closer to God, but also to humanity. Through humility we acknowledge our limitations and virtues, but mostly we see our neighbors as brothers and God as our Father.
As Pope Francis reminded us, "The Lord is patient with us! He never tires of starting over again each time we fall ". That is why, despite our faults and incitements, the Lord welcomes us with open arms to start all over again. Let us, therefore, try to accomplish that in our life, and particularly today, this Word becomes a reality in us. The joy of the Christian is to be recognized by the love that is seen in his life, love that springs from Jesus.