Sunday of Lent Year B
21 March 2021
“And whereas indeed he was the Son of God, he learned obedience by the things which he suffered: And being consummated, he became, to all that obey him, the cause of eternal salvation.”
The lesson for today’s reading is very special as it reveals to us the whole key to why Jesus Christ became Man. He is our salvation! There is no other way to eternal salvation but through Him. If we want to save our soul, we need to put all our trust in Jesus Christ, as today’s Gospel Jn. 12:20-33 tells us, because He is the one who already purchased our redemption by His suffering on the Cross: “And I, if I be lifted up from the earth, will draw all things to myself. (Now this he said, signifying what death he should die.)” Jn. 12:32-33 Before the coming of Jesus, Satan, the prince of this world, Satan, had mankind in his hands, but Jesus conquered sin and Satan: “Now is the judgment of the world: now shall the prince of this world be cast out.” Jn. 12:31 The Father has glorified Jesus who in obedience to the Father fulfilled His plan of salvation: “Father, glorify thy name. A voice therefore came from heaven: I have both glorified it, and will glorify it again.” Jn. 12:28 The Father speaks these words as Jesus is about to begin His hour of suffering on the Cross.
“All Shall Know Me...”
In today’s First Reading from the prophet Jeremiah (Jer. 31:31-34), we see how God was planning a new covenant with the Jewish people. It is, as we see in today’s Gospel, the unbelievable event of God becoming Man for the forgiveness of sins. All will know God as they will see God’s Son in the flesh: “And they shall teach no more every man his neighbour, and every man his brother, saying: Know the Lord: for all shall know me from the least of them even to the greatest, saith the Lord: for I will forgive their iniquity, and I will remember their sin no more.” Jer. 31-34 Could anything be more consoling than God forgiving our sins and no longer remembering them?
“Obedience in Suffering”
In today’s Second Reading (Heb. 5:7-9), St. Paul tells us that Jesus’ suffering in obedience to His Father is the cause of our salvation: “And whereas indeed he was the Son of God, he learned obedience by the things which he suffered: And being consummated, he became, to all that obey him, the cause of eternal salvation.” Heb. 5:8-9 All who follow Jesus Christ and obey Him are assured of their eternal salvation.
“The Hour is Come...” Jn.12:23
Jesus’ glory will come now with the hour of His suffering and death: “...The hour is come, that the Son of man should be glorified. Amen, amen I say to you, unless the grain of wheat falling into the ground die, Itself remaineth alone. But if it die, it bringeth forth much fruit....” Jn. 12:23-25 This can only happen by Jesus’ sacrifice of His own life on the Cross; just as the seed must die in order for plant to live, so Jesus must die for us to live: “Amen, amen I say to you, unless the grain of wheat falling into the ground die, Itself remaineth alone. But if it die, it bringeth forth much fruit...” Jn. 12:24-25 Jesus also reminds His followers that they too must lose their lives if they wish to follow Him. “...He that loveth his life shall lose it; and he that hateth his life in this world, keepeth it unto life eternal.” Jn. 12:25 Jesus gives us His own example in obedience to the Father as He does not want to be delivered from the hour of suffering as this is why He came into this world: “Now is my soul troubled. And what shall I say? Father, save me from this hour. But for this cause I came unto this hour. Father, glorify thy name. A voice therefore came from heaven: I have both glorified it, and will glorify it again”. Jn. 12:27-28 Jesus’ whole life was to give the Father the greatest honour and glory. This is why He is the firstborn of all creation because He gives the Father such great glory. By glorifying the Father, Jesus will in turn be glorified by the Father because of the unity of love within the Blessed Trinity. There is no more sublime a teaching in the world than Jesus’ offering of Himself to the Father on the Cross for the Father’s glory and the salvation of our souls.
There is no Greater Love
God the Father loves mankind so much that He offers His own son for our salvation. The Son in obedience to the Father, offers Himself for our salvation: “For God so loved the world, as to give his only begotten Son; that whosoever believeth in him, may not perish, but may have life everlasting.” Jn. 3:16 St. Peter in his First Epistle, tells us how precious is the price of our redemption: “Knowing that you were not redeemed with corruptible things as gold or silver, from your vain conversation of the tradition of your fathers: But with the precious blood of Christ, as of a lamb unspotted and undefiled,” I Pet. 1:18-19 Let us be grateful to God for redeeming us at such a great price. Let us pray and sacrifice for the salvation of souls as Our Lady requested at Fatima with the Holy Rosary and sacrifice: "Many souls go to hell because they have no one to pray for them or make sacrifices for them."