Reflection on Today’s Daily Readings by Fr. Bertrand Buby, SM
Scripture: April 21, Lectionary # 275. Acts 8:1b-8. Psalm 66:1-3a.
4-5.6-7a. John 6:35-40.
We know enter the Wisdom section of Jesus’ long discourse on the Eucharist.
We pay close attention to what he is saying realizing that he does not give
us anything about the institution of the Eucharist at the Last Supper scene
that he presents in several chapters (13-17). Jesus the Wisdom Person
teaches us about the gift of love through this discourse on the Bread of
Life. To come to Jesus we need the grace of God who always takes the
initiative in love and grace. Verse 35 leads us now into the Wisdom of
Jesus where he invites us like Lady Wisdom in the Old Testament to come to
him and to receive the grace and love of God. “Christ will not reject from
the Kingdom of God those who accept this grace.” (Commentary on John, Bruce
Jesus’ wisdom tells us to live with him in the present moment (realized
eschatology). We are not to hanker after the things of the past or their
rituals. All is new in the Lord. Vatican II has given us this new
approach to living in the present especially in the document called Gaudium
et Spes–the practical way of living out the Constitution on the Church.
The Eucharist is central to the Church and is amply spoken of in the
Constitution on the Liturgy of Vatican II. The revelation bequeathed to
us through the Fourth Evangelist is meant for the present and also for the
future. It does not dwell on the past except to realize that the Exodus
promises are now being fulfilled in a new way. John combines both realized
eschatology and future eschatology. That is his projected purpose and goal
or his perspective in looking at our life with Christ.
In the Acts we are impressed with how the first Christians and the apostles
and deacons lived their lives in the present whether it was during times of
happiness and community or imprisonment and persecution. We see Philip
(another favored apostle in this Gospel) taking up the ministry of
preaching to the Samaritans about the Passion, Death, and Resurrection of
the Lord Jesus. Samaritans are favored both in John and in Luke’s
We are to live the sacrament of the present moment. Eucharist is that
sacrament and helps us to enter into the life of Jesus and to understand
what he means when he promises us eternal life. By realizing this now we
can easily appreciate it in the future. Amen. Alleluia.