Thursday, October 24, 2013

Surpassing knowledge of Jesus Christ

"More than that, I even consider everything as a loss because of the supreme good of knowing Christ Jesus my Lord. For his sake I have accepted the loss of all things and I consider them so much rubbish, that I may gain Christ."  (Philippians 3: 8)

St. Jerome said that "Ignorance of scripture is ignorance of Christ."  In other words, sacred scripture is the royal way to the knowledge of Jesus Christ.  Jesus Christ said to the Sadducees,  “You are misled because you do not know the scriptures or the power of God."  No wonder the Sadducees  did not see the Old Testament prophecies fulfilled in the person of Jesus.

When Jesus appeared to two of His disciples on the Road to Emmaus,
"He said to them, “These are my words that I spoke to you while I was still with you, that everything written about me in the law of Moses and in the prophets and psalms must be fulfilled.”
Then he opened their minds to understand the scriptures.
 And he said to them, “Thus it is written that the Messiah would suffer and rise from the dead on the third day and that repentance, for the forgiveness of sins, would be preached in his name to all the nations, beginning from Jerusalem.
You are witnesses of these things.
And [behold] I am sending the promise of my Father upon you; but stay in the city until you are clothed with power from on high.”  (Luke 24: 44 - 49) 

While sacred scripture reveals the identity of Jesus, knowledge of Jesus is not limited to the scriptures.  The living Tradition of the Church is a source of knowledge of Jesus Christ.  Jesus instituted the Sacraments as a means of dispensing the fruits of salvation.  When the Sacraments are celebrated in the Church, the Church teaches that the priest acts in Persona Christi, that is, in the Person of  Christ.  So we know Jesus Christ through His actions in the Sacraments.  We know the Lord through prayer.  In prayer, we thank Him, we praise Him, we bless Him.  We lift up our needs to Him.  We listen to His response and learn how He meets all our needs through His gracious providence.

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