As they were coming down from the mountain, the disciples then asked Jesus, “Why do the scribes say that Elijah must come first?” He said in reply, “Elijah will indeed come and restore all things; but I tell you that Elijah has already come, and they did not recognize him but did to him whatever they pleased. So also will the Son of Man suffer at their hands.” Then the disciples understood that he was speaking to them of John the Baptist.
Jesus seems to ignore the question asked and give attention to the present status of life. Very often we like to know how things have gone, and why it has happened. These elements do help us to grow and to avoid the repetition of the same mistakes. Why God has said this? And why it has happened? We know to ask questions to the outside world, without looking for real answers, very often, which remain within ourselves.
We seek and want to know the divine will. Certainly, this is a good thing. However, there are still other elements that are brought to our hands, which we conveniently ignore; our human duty. In our behaviour, we are not just and in our actions, we are violent. It is not enough to seek and to know, we must put into practice all that we have already heard in our baptism.
Very often it is not a question of not knowing, but simply our lethargic and arrogant attitude that keeps us away from God's grace. God always gives us signs and opportunities to be converted and to recognise God's love. John offered us the baptism of conversion and like the contemporaries of his time, we continue to slaughter the innocent and persecute those who give us the signs of hope.
Action of the day: Learn to look inwardly.
“Elijah has already come, and they did not recognize him but did to him whatever they pleased”
Fr. Xavier SOBREVÍA i Vidal
Today, we see Jesus talking with his disciples as they are coming down from the mountain, where they have just lived the Transfiguration. Our Lord hasn't taken up Peter's suggestion that they stay, and is answering the questions of the disciples as they descend. Those, who have just partaken momentarily in the glory of God, are surprised and don't understand how the Messiah could have come without the prophet Elijah coming first to prepare everything.
It turns out that the preparation has already been done. “but I tell you that Elijah has already come” (Mt 17:12). John the Baptist has prepared the way. But the men of the world don't recognize the men of God, nor do the prophets of the world recognize the prophets of God, nor do the arrogant of the world recognize the divinity of Jesus Christ.
A new way of looking and new heart are necessary if the ways of God are to be recognized, and if we are to respond with cheerfulness and generosity to the demanding calls of those He has sent. Not everybody is willing to understand it, let alone live it. What's more the way we live our lives and our plans might be in opposition to God's will. An opposition that could turn into a struggle against, and a rejection of, Our Father in Heaven.
We need to discover the intense love that informs God's plans for us and, if we are to be consistent with the faith and morality that Jesus reveals to us, we can't be surprised by the bad treatment, the slander and the persecutions. Being on the right track doesn't stop there being difficulties in life and He, despite the suffering, teaches us to keep on going.
We ask the Mother of Jesus, Queen of the Apostles, to intercede so that no one will be lacking a friend who, like the prophets, will bring them the Good News of salvation that is brought to us through the birth of Jesus Christ. We have the mission, you and me, to make sure that those people who cross their path with ours experience this Christmas in a more Christian way.