UNVEILING THE CURTAIN

 Meditation for Saturday of the 2nd Week in Ordinary Time, Year B
(Heb 9:2-3, 11-14; Mk 3:20-21)
At the end of our second week of journeying with the Letter of the Hebrews, we meditate on how excellent and effective is the priesthood of Jesus Christ. In the Old Testament temple, there were two divisions, separated by a curtain: the Holy Place and the Holy of Holies. ‘The Holy Place’ was the outer area where the lampstand and the bread of offering were kept. ‘The Holy of Holies’ was the inner chamber where the Ark of the Covenant was kept. When Jesus died on the Cross, this temple curtain was torn in two (Mk 15:37). Thus, by Jesus’ priestly offering of Himself, there are no more barriers between ‘the place of sacrifice’ and ‘the dwelling place of God.’ Jesus, the High Priest, who offers our sacrifice, now dwells in the highest heavens.

What is more excellent is that Jesus performs His priestly ministry, not in man-made tents like the priests of Old, but He enters God’s dwelling place, “Taking not the blood of goats and calves but His Blood, thus securing an eternal redemption.” Think about how great and effective is the offering of Christ. If the sprinkling of the blood of animals in the priest of old purified the flesh of defiled persons, “How much more shall the Blood of Christ, who through the eternal Spirit offered Himself without blemish to God, purify your conscience from dead works to serve the living God.”

In our society today, people hardly pick an interest in anything that does not benefit them directly. The prevailing attitude is for us to turn every opportunity for potential benefit, even if it requires ‘harnessing’ the potential of others. That is why miracle-seeking faith is echoing in our churches, even calling on Jesus, who gave Himself as an unblemished sacrifice for us. In the Gospel, He so dedicated His time to the crowds that He could not eat. Let us learn from His example, and through His grace, live for others since Jesus has removed the ‘curtain’ that separated us from God’s throne of grace. Amen.

 

Fr Jude Chinwenwa Nwachukwu, C.Ss.R
Saints Peter & Paul Catholic Church,
Tedi-Muwo, Lagos.
Saturday, January 23rd, 2021.
www.nwachinwe.blogspot.com

 

 

 

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