Solemnity of the Birthday of John the Baptist. Bible 7Study: Isaiah 49:1-6, Psalm 139 Acts 13:22-26 and Luke 1:57-66.80
“And immediately his mouth was opened and his tongue loosed, and he spoke, blessing God.” (Luke 1:64).
Today is June 24. It is now six months before Christmas. Today, we are celebrating the birthday of the one of whom the Angel Gabriel spoke when he said: “Your kinswoman, Elizabeth, the one whom people call barren is now in her sixth month for with God, nothing will be impossible.” We celebrate the birth of John the Baptist not just because it was a miracle, but it also marked the beginning of God’s plan for the redemption of man.
From the life of John the Baptist, we can see that no human life comes into existence without God knowing it. Long before we were formed in the womb, we already existed in the mind of God. As the Prophet Isaiah relates in today’s first reading: “The Lord called me from the womb, from my mother’s womb he named my name…” Abortion is the greatest act of man’s inhumanity to man. John the Baptist was not yet conceived before God sent an Angel to Zechariah to inform him he would have a son. What would have been of this child if he was aborted?
Our Gospel passage today is a record of the naming ceremony of John the Baptist. The family members were planning to call him Zechariah but Elizabeth and Zechariah knew that this child had a different destiny. They both opted for “John”. As soon as he wrote the name on a tablet, Zechariah’s speech was restored and he who once doubted God sang the Benedictus, praising God. Zechariah must have complained so much that he completely lost faith in God hence Angel Gabriel had to shut his mouth. Whenever you catch yourself complaining, please shut up. Sing praises instead.
The people wondered: “What will this child turn out to be?” This question is answered in our second reading. John the Baptist did the most beautiful work of preparing the ground for Jesus Christ. We can never understand our life looking forward, we only understand it looking back. Stop asking what tomorrow holds for you, you will not find the answer. But when you look back and connect the dots, you realize that God has always been there all through your life.
John the Baptist knew his purpose, he was not in competition with anyone, he did not try to be like anyone else. He fulfilled his destiny. He prepared the way for Jesus. When he became so popular he said: “I am not he. No, but after me, one is coming, the sandals of whose feet I am not worthy to untie.” The moment John the Baptist said this, he had reached old age. He had finished his work.
Let us pray: Lord Jesus, increase my respect for the life of the unborn. Amen.
Be Happy. Live Positive. Have Faith. It is well with you. God bless you.