The Second Sunday of Lent
[Scripture Readings: Gen 15:5-12, 17-18; Phil 3:17-4:1; Lk 9:28b-36]
Do not think about it, do not talk about it. It may never happen. Such is the convenient formula for anything that is unpleasant and unwelcomed. consider the case of someone who is handed a ticket: “Go to jail. Go directly to jail. Do not pass ‘Go.’ Do not collect two hundred dollars” What would the game of Monopoly be without something like this? Think of what it would be like if it would happen in real life. Incarceration was never meant to be a vacation.
In today’s Gospel, Peter, James and John are faced with something that was unexpected but fervently welcomed. The reason why so many rejected Jesus was that they saw in him a mere man just like any other. They failed to see what the Fathers of the Church called the hook of his divinity. The three surprised disciples were allowed to catch a glimpse of someone who was not just human in his exterior demeanor.
The exchange between Jesus and Moses and Elijah was not pleasant chatter. They were discussing his exodus that he was going to accomplish in Jerusalem. Just what that entailed remained to be seen by anyone who had the chance to watch Jesus. His days on earth were numbered and his departure from the world we know would become evident. How could anyone who would view such a death ever believe others who would relate what he had said and did in his life?
We are in the season of Lent. A time set apart by the Church to review so many texts of Scripture that lead us to the Great Week or Holy Week and his culmination to his life on earth and his glorious resurrection discovered on Easter Sunday. he did not back down from what he knew was coming. Jesus was sent to jail. He went directly to jail. He would pay the last farthing for someone who by the civil authority would judge a condemned criminal. Everything else is commentary.
His followers are lined up on the Royal Road and the King’s Highway that leads to Calvary. They are not just idle bystanders. They are waiting for marching orders to fall in line and match him step for step. Do not think about it. Do not talk about it. Just do it.