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The reading of today tells and presents us fundamental question and deep reflection about our faith in the Messiah, His coming, the sign of his presence and the risk to miss Him.

For this the disciples in the Gospel ask and maybe wanted to know really whether Jesus is the true Messiah that people of God are really waiting and expecting to come. But they could not express directly their doubt about Jesus’ Messianic identity.

Therefore, they asked Jesus about people and prophets’ belief that Elijah has to come before the coming of the Messiah. Their question was as: if you are the Messiah, How come Elijah has not yet come, as the prophet promised?

Jesus knowing their doubt converted and gave them fundamental answer to remove their doubt that he is really the Messiah to save the world. He is the one the prophets were waiting for. Now Jesus want to tell them that they, themselves as well as the majority of the people, will also miss his coming but not recognizing him as the One to come and expecting another one. Jesus emphasized: Yes! I am the Messiah. I am the One you have been waiting for. I am God in your midst. Elijah has already come but they treated him badly, so also will I be treated.”He prophesized already what people will do to him because they will not recognize Him, they will kill him and do whatever they want as they did to many other prophets.

What is the relationship between Elijah and John the Baptist and Jesus, the Messiah? The apostles were confused and tried to interpret that John the Baptist is the New Elijah. What is the relation between the two?

It was the faith and beliefs of the Old testament people that Elijah is to come first before the end of time, before the coming of the Messiah: “Behold, I will send you Elijah the prophet before the coming of the great and dreadful day of the Lord” (Malachi 4:5-6).

The disciples refer John the Baptist to be the new Elijah because the two have the same mission and commission. Elijah was calling the people and kings to convert and prepare the coming of the Messiah who will restore everything. About John Baptist, Gabriel brought a message from God that a prophet was coming to announce that Jesus was the Christ, the longawaited Messiah. John the Baptist was that prophet, and Jesus declared that John was an Elijah-like figure, in addition to one who would come later. An angel declared of John’s mission: “And he will turn many of the children of Israel to the Lord their God. He will also go before Him, Jesus, in the spirit and power of Elijah, ‘to turn the hearts of the fathers to the children’ and the disobedient to the wisdom of the just, to make ready a people prepared for the

Lord” (Lk1:16-17).

Therefore, we have to be aware of the coming and presence of the Messiah in our midst. Because Jesus came on a silent and holy night that nobody would recognize. We must be conscious of this. God did not come in a grand fashion except, maybe, the Incarnation. Who would have thought He will become one like us? Mary, herself, was stunned by that revelation. His daily and permanent present coming to us through the Word of God and Sacrament is also silent and simple. And even his second coming will be unexpected again because nobody will recognize the sense of his coming.

So, it is best to assess our life during these days of prayer and reflection. Do not worry. Christmas will be celebrated as joyful as we want. The Church does celebrate it. But do we prepare for it? The best celebration will be one we prepared for. Reconcile with the Lord so that when He comes, we can welcome Him in our hearts.


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