Gospel Reflection – “Behold the Lamb of God!”
John points to Jesus’ saving mission – to offer up his life as the atoning sacrifice for our sins
It is significant that John was the son of Zachariah, a priest of Israel who participated in the daily sacrifice of a lamb in the temple for the sins of the people (Exodus 29). John recognized that Jesus was the perfect unblemished lamb offered by the Father in heaven as the one and only sacrifice that could cancel the debt of sin, and free us from death and the destruction of body and soul in hell.
The Holy Spirit reveals who Jesus truly is – the Son of God and Savior of the world
When John says he did not know Jesus (John 1:31,33) he was referring to the hidden reality of Jesus’ divinity. But the Holy Spirit in that hour revealed to John Jesus’ true nature, such that John bore witness that this is the Son of God. How can we be certain that Jesus is truly the Christ, the Son of the living God? The Holy Spirit makes the Lord Jesus Christ known to us through the gift of faith. God gives us his Spirit as our helper and guide who opens our hearts and minds to receive and comprehend the great mystery and plan of God – to unite all things in his Son, our Lord Jesus Christ (Ephesians 1:10).
Quote from the early church fathers: John points to Jesus’ saving mission, by Cyril of Alexandria (376-444 AD)
“No longer does John need to ‘prepare the way,’ since the one for whom the preparation was being made is right there before his eyes… But now he who of old was dimly pictured, the very Lamb, the spotless Sacrifice, is led to the slaughter for all, that he might drive away the sin of the world, that he might overturn the destroyer of the earth, that dying for all he might annihilate death, that he might undo the curse that is upon us… For one Lamb died for all (2 Corinthians 5:14), saving the whole flock on earth to God the Father, one for all, that he might subject all to God.” (excerpt from the COMMENTARY ON THE GOSPEL OF JOHN 2.1)
Text and reflections, courtesy and used with permission – http://dailyscripture.servantsoftheword.org