Gospel – Matthew 24:37-44
First Sunday of Advent

Jesus said to his disciples:
“As it was in the days of Noah,
so it will be at the coming of the Son of Man.
In those days before the flood,
they were eating and drinking,
marrying and giving in marriage,
up to the day that Noah entered the ark.
They did not know until the flood came and carried them all away.
So will it be also at the coming of the Son of Man.
Two men will be out in the field;
one will be taken, and one will be left.
Two women will be grinding at the mill;
one will be taken, and one will be left.
Therefore, stay awake!
For you do not know on which day your Lord will come.
Be sure of this: if the master of the house
had known the hour of night when the thief was coming,
he would have stayed awake
and not let his house be broken into.
So too, you also must be prepared,
for at an hour you do not expect, the Son of Man will come.”

Reflection on Sunday Gospel

Let us remember we are in the holy presence of God…

In these our days Advent can be a struggle. The culture in which we live says: “It is Happy Holidays!” Somewhat guardedly, or even openly, we say “We are anticipating the Coming of Jesus!” The struggle is also of the “Mystery” of the “Coming” of Jesus. We anticipate the memorial of the birth of one who becomes, by the birth of resurrection, the Christ.

Matthew narrates, in these latter chapters of his Gospel, the discussions of Jesus in his final week. He strikes an ominous note which may make us wonder: are we to be sad or happy? Jesus goes directly to the mystery of our lives: “Therefore, you too must be ready because the Son of Man is coming at an hour you do not expect!”

Jesus’ use of the title “Son of Man” puts us directly into prophecy. Daniel, who lived quite close to the time of Jesus, tells of his great vision of “One who looked like a human”. That is why both Daniel and Jesus use “Son of Man will come!” This is the change-over to the “world to come1”  For emphasis, Matthew cites Noah who tried to convince his contemporaries that “some change is about the happen”. They didn’t pay any attention. People going about their work day have no anticipation of their “being taken”. On the other hand, the servant takes precautions so that when the master returns he will find all things ready.

At the beginning of the turning of our liturgical year, we are directed to the stupendous change of all things, of which the birth in Bethlehem is the “prophecy of God’s Will for all of us!”

St. John Baptist de La Salle … Pray for Us!
Live Jesus in our Hearts … Forever!

Br. James Loxham, FSC