Why do we celebrate Epiphany? We give it a whole season, from Jan 6 until Ash Wednesday. It must be important, what is the message? In the Eastern Church called Theophany from Theos = God and phanos/ein = to reveal. Why is that important?
It's eye opening to learn that so many places in the world lack basic religious freedom. In several countries, when a person converts to Christianity, it's guaranteed that he or she will face extreme consequences...often torture, prison, and even death.
How can we apply the importance of this message/lesson to our here and now? We don’t really face extreme consequences for being “Christian” I agree we are losing the ‘culture war’ but when was the last time you heard about someone in the US facing torture, prison, and even death as a result of their belief?
In the early church this was an acceptable reality – “In the world you will have tribulation. But take heart; I have overcome the world." To keep their heart, to keep confident in the midst of tribulation they gathered together and reminded each other of what Jesus had done. They needed to remember the hope. They needed to remember the truth.
YHWH is Jesus is the TRUTH. In the beginning was the Word, and the Word was with God, and the Word was God. John 1:16-18 And from his fullness we have all received, grace upon grace. 17 For the law was given through Moses; grace and truth came through Jesus Christ. 18 No one has ever seen God; the only God, who is at the Father's side, he has made him known.
The TRUTH spoke in a human voice to human ears a promise to reveal himself to those who seek him.
He still comes to us and reveals himself in the Sacraments.
He still comes to us and reveals himself in all of our fellow men and women.
He still comes to us and reveals himself in all of his creation.
Our world today is still like the world of the early church. Everywhere you look, you see people without hope, where can they turn. Everywhere you look, you see people looking for truth, where can they turn.
You and I have the hope. We need to remember the hope. You and I have the truth. We need to remember the truth.
Share the hope! Share the truth!