Eastertide Sunday 4A, 3rd May 2020
We’ve recently acquired a clock radio which, when set right, has faithfully been waking me up at 5.35 am and also faithfully taking me on a journey around the British Coast, both its inshore and offshore waters, followed by ‘Thought for the Day’, ‘Farming News’ and a daily tweet. But on Saturday we had an examination of teeth whiteners instead of ‘Thought for the Day’, and it gave a fascinating insight into the many false claims by the many false messiahs that assail us today. Fortunately, there was a dentist on hand to de-bunk the many myths about how best to whiten our teeth and essentially say, ‘Stick to the fluoride and you’ll be all right’. One could multiply this example many times over, not least with discerning truth as it comes to us through other electronic devices such as smart phones and computers. We need some sort of filter to detect the true from the false and relying on our judgement only takes us so far; we seem set up to fail, it’s our default position, our original sin. Herbert McCabe describes the death of Jesus as a failure by the authorities of the day to recognize him as fully human; that is, as God’s expression of God’s desire for us to be holy. Jesus is the Christ who comes to show us what it is to be fully human and to draw us into this same life, this loving relationship of Father Son and Holy Spirit, both now and forever.
The failure to recognise Jesus for both what and who he is, is attributed to ‘hardness of heart’ and . . . this comes down to a general human reluctance to accept the human when we meet it.p. 93 God Matters
This is taking incarnation seriously as, not a fleeting visit by a divine ambassador whose real home is elsewhere, but as a fulfilment of God’s love for us as creatures. I will send you a complete human being to bring your own humanity to its completion, too. When we kill Christ, its a rejection of our own full humanity that is taking place for:
His whole life and death was a response in love and obedience to the gift of being human, an act of gratitude and appreciation of the gift of being human.p. 95 ibid
Our call then is to enter the sheepfold of our full humanity and the only gatekeeper or filter that will take us there is Jesus, who has come ‘so that’ we ‘may have life and have it to the full.’