Knights of Columbus Bible
Tuesday 7:00 p.m.
K. C. Hall Hwy 90 - Del Rio, Texas
Opening Prayer/Psalm 33
“Lord, let your mercy be on us, as we place our trust in you.”
The Church unites herself to the journey of Abraham, Father of believers
Sacred history begins with a story of disobedience (Genesis 2-3) and its consequences punctuated by four curses – “Because you have done this, you shall be banned from all the animals and from all the wild creatures,” God said to the serpent (Genesis 3:14). Then, “cursed be the ground (Genesis 3:17). Then God said to Cain, “you shall be banned from the soil (Genesis 4:11). Finally, “cursed be Canaan!” (Genesis 9:25).
In Genesis 12: 1-25 (2nd Sunday of Lent Lectionary reading, cycle A), the words “blessed” and “blessings” are used five times…”I will make you a great nation.” “I will make your name great…”, “…I will bless those who bless you and curse those who cruse you.” “All the communities of the earth shall find blessing in you.” The call of Abraham singles a reversal of sacred history. After Noah, Abraham is the father of a new human race: that of believers who God blesses. This blessing will be shared by “all the communities of the earth” which will stand behind Abraham, the prototype of the believer and of the blessed one, whose name will become synonymous with benediction (Genesis 12:3)
In Christ Jesus, and in him alone, all blessing will be recapitulated, as St. Paul writes: “Blessed be the God and Father of our Lord Jesus Christ who has blessed us in Christ with every spiritual blessing in the heavens…(He had) as a plan for the fullness of time, to sum up all things in Christ, in heaven and on earth.” (Ephesians 1:3-10)
Catechism of the Catholic Church
CCC 554 From the day Peter confessed that Jesus is the Christ, the Son of the living God, the Master “began to show his disciples that he must go to Jerusalem and suffer many things…and be killed, and on the third day be
raised” (Matthew 16:21). Peter scorns this prediction, nor do the others understand it any better than he (Matthew 16:22-23). In this context the mysterious episode of Jesus’ Transfiguration takes place on the high mountain (Matthew 17: 1-8), before three witnesses chosen by himself: Peter, James, and John. Jesus’ face and clothes become dazzling with light, and Moses and Elijah appear, speaking "of his departure, which he was to accomplish at Jerusalem” (Luke 9:31). A cloud covers him and a voice from heaven says: “This is my Son, my Chosen; listen to him! (Luke 9 :35).
CCC 555 For a moment Jesus discloses his divine glory, confirming Peter’s confession. He also reveals that he will have to go by the way of the cross at Jerusalem in order to “enter into his glory” (Luke 24:26). Moses and Elijah had seen God’s glory on the Mountain; the Law and the Prophets had announced the Messiah’s sufferings (Luke 24:27). Christ passion is the will of the Father: the Son acts as God’s servant; the cloud indicates the presence of the Holy Spirit. “The whole Trinity appeared: the Father in the voice; the Son in the man; the Spirit in the shinning cloud.”
CCC 568 Christ’s Transfiguration aims at strengthening the apostles’ faith in anticipation of his Passion: the ascent onto the “high mountain” prepares for the ascent to Calvary. Christ, Head of the Church, manifests what his Body contains and radiates in the sacraments: “the hope of glory” (Colossians 1:27).
God’s plan manifested in Jesus 2 Timothy 1:8b-10 - God’s blessing, the object of the promise, was poured out into the whole universe “through the appearance of our savior Christ Jesus, who destroyed death and brought life and immortality to light through the gospel.”
“God saved us and called us to a holy life, not according to our works but according to his own design and the grace bestowed on us.” Therefore, the call to life, to salvation, is absolutely gratuitous; St. Paul often returns to this fundamental point. Likewise, he loves to say that salvation rests upon God’s call, answered by us; this is well in keeping with the tradition of the Old Testament, where Abraham is a model of this response (Genesis 12: 1-25).
The transfiguration of Jesus in the context of Lent
1. An anticipated vision of Christ in glory – To the Christian community assembled to celebrate the Second Sunday of Lent, St. Matthew’s Gospel presents a vision of Christ in glory, anticipating his appearance on the last day (Matthew 17:1-9).
Jesus’ transfiguration, which the three disciples witness, happens suddenly, on God’s initiative. The event takes place on “a high mountain,” a place to which God descends and humans go up to meet him and which, in the prophetic tradition, is an evocation of God’s manifestation on the last day.
Jesus’ "face shone like the sun and his cloths became white as light.” According to the Gospel Jesus has just announced the return of the Son of Man “in his Father’s glory” (Matthew16:27). And suddenly, Peter, James, and John see Jesus resplendent with divine light and whiteness – this same Jesus with whom, only a few moments before, they were claiming the slop; this same Jesus who, soon afterward, will resume in their eyes his usual appearance; this same Jesus whom, later on, they will see disfigured by human outrages and hung on the shameful cross.
The three disciples will bear witness to this vision when the risen Jesus will have been “taken up in glory” (1Timothy 3:16), the glory the Father “gave him” (1Peter 1:21). The Gospel of the transfiguration illuminates the Lenten pilgrimage of the Church. The tragedy of the cross is not thereby lessened, but it is placed in the perspective of the Easter radiance. The experience of the transfiguration teaches today’s Christians, as it taught Peter, James, and John yesterday, that through his death, Jesus has become “the Lord of glory” (1 Corinthians 2:8) and that his ultimate manifestation is approaching.
“You were transfigured on the mountain, and you disciples, as much as they were capable of it, beheld your glory, O Christ our God, so that when they should see you crucified they would understand that your Passion was voluntary, and proclaim to the world that you truly are the splendor of the Father.” Byzantine Liturgy, Feast of the Transfiguration, “Kontakion”