One Monk of the Order of Saint Benedict

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The Word of God and the Body of God reveal each other -- the homily worships both.

May 22, 2006

For Tuesday of the Sixth Week of Easter

John 16:5-11

Today in his Gospel, the Lord speaks of going away.
He “went away” through death, Resurrection and Ascension.
He tells us today that his going away is to our advantage.
What he did two thousand years ago, and continues to do is by the power of the Holy Spirit— the power of the Spirit abiding in Christ himself— the power of the Spirit that Christ breathes out upon us and within us.
Though we do not see Christ face to face now, he is present and at work in the power of the Spirit.
What, then, is the work of the Spirit?
Today in his Gospel, Christ uses the language of legal court proceedings.
The Spirit is a paraclete, that is, a legal voice or legal advocate, both for Christ and for us.
The Spirit voices the case that sin is lack of faith in Christ.
The Spirit makes the case that the way of righteousness, justice, holiness, follows Christ going to the Father through death and resurrection.
We do not see Christ’s triumph face to face, nor does the world.
In the eyes of an unbelieving world, our faith is self-deceived foolishness, not righteousness or justice.
If anyone comes to have faith, it is by hearing and obeying the voice of the Spirit.
Finally, Christ tells us the Spirit’s work is to reveal God’s judgment against the evil that rules in the world.
We must keep in mind that the Lord says he sends the Spirit not to the world but to us.
This means that the work of the Spirit is done through us, with us and in us.
Christ CALLS us to BE Christ in the world, to be his body given for the life of the world.
The same Spirit abiding in all its fullness in the still incarnate Son of God— the same Spirit is sent upon us by Christ.
As we approach the risen and ascended Son of God today in his flesh and blood, we approach also the fullness of the Spirit.
Our eyes, for now, cannot see the Father, the Son and the Spirit, though they are really with us— in the Son’s flesh and blood humanity that sits already at the right hand of the Father and bears the fullness of the Holy Spirit.
Christ and the Spirit— two divine paracletes, two divine advocates— divinely invoking “Abba— Father” on behalf of the human children of God!

That God Be Glorified in All


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