elijah, john, ?, and christ
"The disciples put this question to Him: 'Why do the scribes claim that Elijah must come first?' " —Matthew 17:10
Before Jesus comes this Christmas, at death, or at the end of the world, Elijah must come. Elijah has come through the ministry of John the Baptizer (Mt 17:12-13). Elijah will come through someone who will prophetically call us to repentance, reconciliation (especially in our families) (Sir 48:10), and to making disciples (Sir 48:8; 1 Kgs 19:19).
The new Elijah and John the Baptizer will say just what we need to hear, but not what we want to hear. We will be tempted to do as we please with him or her (Mt 17:12). We will feel like ignoring, arguing with, or even attacking this person sent by the Lord to prepare His way this Christmas time (see Mt 21:34ff). If we repent rather than doing what we want, if we take up our daily cross and follow the Lord as His disciples (Lk 9:23), we will have accepted the ministry of Elijah. Then Jesus will have a straight way into our lives this Christmas.
Come, Elijah! Come, repentance, reconciliation, and the daily cross of discipleship! Come, Emmanuel! Come, Lord Jesus! Come, O Christ of Christmas!
Prayer: Father, do whatever it takes to lay low the mountain of sin in my life (Is 40:4).
Promise: "How awesome are you, Elijah! Whose glory is equal to yours? You brought a dead man back to life from the nether world, by the will of the Lord." —Sir 48:4-5
Praise: St. John of the Cross was especially devoted to Jesus as the Suffering Servant.
Reference: (Read the Bible daily. Order any or all of these tapes: Ignorance of Scripture is Ignorance of Christ, AV 82-1, V-82, How to Pray the Bible on audio AV 82-3 or on video V-82, How to Read the Bible on audio AV 46-3 or on video V-46, Principles of Bible Interpretation, audio AV 79-1, video V-79.)
Rescript: †Most Reverend Joseph R. Binzer, Auxiliary Bishop, Vicar General of the Archdiocese of Cincinnati, June 17, 2013
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