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Monday, December 14, 2020

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St. John of the Cross

Numbers 24:2-7, 15-17
Psalm 25:4-9
Matthew 21:23-27

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“We do not know.” —Matthew 21:27

Balaam called himself the man who “knows what the Most High knows” (Nm 24:4, 16). He was so highly regarded for his ability as a fortune-teller that nations sent large delegations of dignitaries with large amounts of money to obtain his services (Nm 22:6-7, 15). Yet this man who “sees what the Almighty sees” (Nm 24:16) couldn’t even get the picture when his donkey began to talk to him! (Nm 22:28ff) He had to admit that he “did not know that” God opposed His greedy plot against Israel (Nm 22:34).

The Jewish religious leaders were also confident in their expert knowledge of God’s plan. They “knew” that Jesus was a sinner (see Jn 9:24). They also “knew” His background (see Jn 7:27; 6:42). Yet when Jesus asked them a direct question which had only two possible answers, they had to admit, “We do not know” (Mt 21:27). They knew the results of each answer to Jesus’ question. However, they didn’t know Jesus, the Answer.

During this Advent season, come humbly to Jesus. Look with amazement on the Baby Jesus, the Almighty King of the universe, lying in a feeding trough. Feel anew the awe that the Eternal Word, Who created the heavens and the earth, would descend to earth and become one of us. Let us be truly wise men and women, and prostrate ourselves before Him (Mt 2:11). “Know that the Lord is God” (Ps 100:3).

Prayer:  Father, “I wish to know Christ” (Phil 3:10). Grant me a Spirit of wisdom and insight to know You clearly (Eph 1:17).

Promise:  “Good and upright is the Lord; thus He shows sinners the way. He guides the humble to justice, He teaches the humble His way.” —Ps 25:8-9

Praise:  St. John of the Cross is one of the Church’s greatest mystics and writers. “May I never boast of anything but the cross of our Lord Jesus Christ!” (Gal 6:14)

Reference:  (This teaching was submitted by a member of our editorial team.)

Rescript:  "In accord with the Code of Canon Law, I hereby grant the Nihil Obstat for One Bread, One Body covering the period from December 1, 2020 through January 31, 2021. Most Reverend Joseph R. Binzer, Auxiliary Bishop, Vicar General, Archdiocese of Cincinnati, Cincinnati, Ohio January 14, 2020"

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