In the Gospel, Jesus referred to himself as, “the one whom the Father has consecrated and sent into the world.”
Then, knowing that it was the Father’s will that he should die a only a few months off at Passover time, he temporarily slipped away to the safety available across the Jordan, where he could prepare his soul or accepting the horrors to come.
In the first reading Jeremiah was subjugated to the hatred and jealousy that would later be visited on Jesus. On every side he too could hear men planning his death. But Jeremiah answered hatred with hatred. He prayed against his tormentors, pleading, “Let me witness the vengeance you take on them.”
To see how Jesus compared with Jeremiah, let’s take a look ahead at the crucifixion. When they had driven the nails into his feet and hands, they lifted his cross upright. Then, with a loud thud, they dropped its base into the hole it was to stand in.
According to Luke, 23:34, the prayer of Jesus at that moment was, ”Father, forgive them, they know not what they do.”
Isaiah, peering over the centuries, got a glimpse of the Savior, and he described him like this, “The spirit of the Lord shall rest up upon him: a spirit of Wisdom and Understanding.”
With the weight of his body pulling him down against his spiked hands, Jesus exercised heavenly understanding of is enemies.
With the people opposed to us, we can imitate Our Lord’s understanding, by searching out the sincere motives that stand under the behavior that causes us pain. In that way we could come around to saying, “Father, forgive them, they know not what they are doing.”
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