Saturday, March 19, 2011

THE ANAWIM

Today’s 1st reading speaks of Samuel telling David of a prophecy which was fulfilled 900 years later in Jesus. Before I got myself involved in bible study I was just taking the title of Jesus as "Son of David" for what it is, just a title they have decided to call him. After several sessions I've had things become clearer to me and taken on a deeper meaning. People who address him in the New Testament as Son of David are people who know of the salvation history of Israel or the chosen people. They are the very people who have come to believe that Jesus is the Messiah because they have been promised of one who will come from the House of David as foretold by the prophets of old. This is very interesting that we find our Christian faith rooted in Jewish heritage. The more we know of the ancestral beginning of Christianity the better our appreciation of it and eventually and inevitably lead to awe and marvel of God's wonders and miracles. Amen. Hallelujah!

2 Samuel 7:4-5, 12-14, 16
4 The LORD spoke to Nathan and said: 5 “Go, tell my servant David, 12 ‘When your time comes and you rest with your ancestors, I will raise up your heir after you, sprung from your loins, and I will make his kingdom firm. 13 It is he who shall build a house for my name. And I will make his royal throne firm forever. 14 I will be a father to him, and he shall be a son to me. 16 Your house and your kingdom shall endure forever before me; your throne shall stand firm forever.’”


If we are to look closely and pay attention to the succession of events of the salvation history or covenant history which goes back to the time of Adam & Eve and Noah and dates way back to 1800 BC during the time of Abraham, Moses (1200), David (means the favored one,1000), Exodus (600) to the birth of our Lord Jesus we will see God’s faithfulness and steadfast love for His people. In this time line are significant events that happened from the time of Creation when God created man who fell into sin and became unfaithful and how God continuously called us back to Him by showing us who He really is throughout the length of time. As dramatic events unfold, like the entrance of the Israelites to the promised land, the pockets of rebellion as they took over the 12 tribes and settled into a life of monarchy (kings) from their 1st king (Saul) to King David and King Solomon, the time of David is described as the greatest time of the people of God. Today’s psalm speaks of how God is pleased with His faithful servants and promises to maintain kindness forever. Amen. Hallelujah!

Psalms 89:2-3, 4-5, 27, 29
R: The son of David will live forever.
...“I have made a covenant with my chosen one, I have sworn to David my servant: 4 [5] Forever will I confirm your posterity and establish your throne for all generations.” (R) 26 [27] “He shall say of me, ‘You are my father, my God, the rock, my savior.’ 28 [29] Forever I will maintain my kindness toward him, and my covenant with him stands firm.”

We can see from the readings today that the big moments of history are based on the simple, intuitive comprehension of the faith of David, Abraham and Joseph, the so called the Anawim of God. We have all the reasons to rejoice and be glad. God is always true to His word and fulfills His promises to the poor in spirit. Amen. Hallelujah!

Romans 4:13, 16-18, 22
...He believed, hoping against hope, that he would become “the father of many nations,” according to what was said, “Thus shall your descendants be.” 22 That is why “it was credited to him as righteousness.”

Today’s gospel speaks of the Annunciation scene of Joseph when the angel said to him not to be afraid to take Mary into his home. He woke and did so as the angel had commanded him. God’s beauty and Mary are one in the heart of Joseph. Pope John Paul II said in his book that Joseph did not suspect Mary but was afraid and held back since did not want to interfere in this great mystery of God’s plan. He has great respect for her holiness and felt unworthy but the angel assured him and he obeyed. We can see the inner drama of Joseph and the test of faith that we sometimes think holy people do not encounter. We have this notion that when we’re holy we don’t have to walk in the darkness of faith. Even Mary had her dark night of faith in Calvary. We are invited to emulate her faith and Joseph’s too. We can see Joseph’s radical humility at his disposal to God’s will and his quiet and firm determination to obey God and be at the service of God’s plan. He shares in the very faith of Mary. They have a union of hearts and souls through marriage since he is the husband of Mary and so is considered the father of Jesus although not biological. In this union, we see the humble service of Joseph. He does not speak any words and yet achieves his great holiness through his loving service to love the Church and Jesus and takes Mary into his home. The word of God comes to us through the Church and calls us like Joseph to bring out the fullness of Christ in whatever situation. Joseph is there at the birth, the presentation, the circumcision, the flee to Egypt and all other mysteries of the life of Jesus. Jesus comes to us in the beautiful institution of the sacraments we should radiate His presence to the world. This is the challenge being posed on us today as we celebrate the Solemnity of St. Joseph, husband of Mary. He is an icon of faith and obedience to God. He followed well the example of his ancestors, Abraham and King David. We can see how the hand of God made all things possible throughout all generations what He said would be. We should never have any doubt in our minds that God has a great plan for all of us and He is able to carry them out for our welfare. We find out from the gospel that Joseph had other plans and intentions in mind but God’s plan and will prevailed over him. This is how we should follow his example. We may have other things in mind and think that it is for the best but we must not lose sight of what God has in mind for us. We may be encountering some disappointments and struggles at the moment as most people do but our faith, hope and love should always rest firm in the Lord who is able to make us stand firm forever. Amen. Hallelujah!


Matthew 1:16, 18-21, 24 (or Luke 2:41-51)
Jacob the father of Joseph, the husband of Mary. Of her was born Jesus who is called the Christ. 18 Now this is how the birth of Jesus Christ came about. When his mother Mary was betrothed to Joseph, but before they lived together, she was found with child through the Holy Spirit. 19 Joseph her husband, since he was a righteous man, yet unwilling to expose her to shame, decided to divorce her quietly. 20 Such was his intention when, behold, the angel of the Lord appeared to him in a dream and said, “Joseph, son of David, do not be afraid to take Mary your wife into your home. For it is through the Holy Spirit that this child has been conceived in her. 21 She will bear a son and you are to name him Jesus, because he will save his people from their sins.” 24 When Joseph awoke, he did as the angel of the Lord had commanded him and took his wife into his home.

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