Sem. Azam Mansha
The Word became flesh and dwelt among us (John 1: 14) is the truth of all truths. It is not only historical event but it is the foundation of our Christian faith. Although in the Fourth Gospel we do not find any Infancy Narrative as we can see in the Gospels of Luke (1:26-2:20) and Matthew (1:18-2:23) but John had seen and experienced the truth that the Word became flesh and dwelt among us. Jesus is the Word who was/is/will be with the Father (John 1: 1-2; Revelation 22:13).
The Word became flesh and dwelt among us contains threefold faith foundation: first, the Word became flesh means God has come down to help his people; second, God dwelt among us means God walk with his people; and third, God nourish his people. As we can clearly see in the Old Testament that God came down to help his people, I have seen the affliction of my people who are in Egypt, and heard their cry because of their taskmasters…I have come down to deliver them out… (Exodus 3: 7-8); God walked with his people, [T]he LORD went before them by day in a pillar of cloud to lead them along the way, and by night in a pillar of fire to give them light… (Exodus 13: 21); and God nourished his people, [T]he sons of Israel ate the manna forty years…they ate the manna, till they came to the border of the land of Canaan (Exodus 16: 35)
Today, where we can find the threefold faith foundation? As Israelites found these foundations during the Exodus: from slavery to freedom (Exodus 6:6), so we who are the people of the New Exodus: from earth to heaven (John 16:28; Romans 5: 12-17), finds fulfillment only in Jesus, with Jesus and through Jesus (Romans 11:36). Everyday Jesus sees our weakness and limitation and always tells us, Rise, take up your pallet, and walk (John 5: 8a; 15: 9a; 1Peter 5:7). Everyday Jesus protects us from evil, I have guard them, and none of them is lost (John 19: 12b; 10: 11-15, I am the Good Shepherd…I know my sheep). Everyday he nourishes us with his own body and blood, Jesus took bread, and blessed, and broke it, and gave it to the disciples and said, ‘‘Take, eat; this is my body…’’ (Matthew 26: 26).
Now what we have to do? As Jesus continues the mission of the Father (Jn. 5: 17), so we are called to continue the mission of Jesus (John 20: 21). We are called to help those who are helpless (Matthew 25: 36); to walk with the weak and oppressed (Matthew 5:3); and to nourish the poor through our prayers and goods (Matthew 5:5).
May Mary the Mother of the Word became flesh, help us to live the spirit of Christmas!