Biblical meditation: “Come Lord Jesus! »

Sunday, May 29, 20227and Easter Sunday, four texts will be read.
First reading Book of the Acts of the Apostles (Acts 7, 55-60).
Psalm 96.
Second Reading Book of Revelation (Rev 22, 12-14.16-17.20).
The Gospel according to Saint John (Jn 17, 20-26).

Apocalypse 22, 12-14.16-17.20

I, Jean, heard a voice saying to me:
“Behold, I come without delay,
and I bring with me the wages that I will give to each according to what he has done.
Me, I am the alpha and the omega,
the first and the last, the beginning and the end.
Blessed are those who wash their clothes:
they will have right of access to the tree of life and, through the gates, they will enter the city.
I, Jesus, have sent my angel
bring you this witness about the churches.
I am the offspring, the descendant of David, the resplendent morning star. »
The Spirit and the Bride say, “Come! »
He who hears, let him say: “Come! »
He who is thirsty, let him come.
whoever wants it,
may he receive the water of life,
And he who gives this testimony declares:
“Yes, I am coming soon. »
Amen! Come, Lord Jesus!

The prayer of prayers, according to Jean Cassien

“Amen! Come, Lord Jesus! » These words, which are the last of the book of Revelation, are located at the very end of the Bible and, by their position, therefore conclude all the holy books. However, by a coincidence that we can find providential (the author of the Apocalypse probably did not know that there would be a canon of the Scriptures and that his book would be chosen to be part of it and to find himself at the end) , they offer a synthesis of the entire biblical message, multiplying the references to what precedes them.

After all, what is the Bible? It can be expressed in different ways, with various nuances, but they all converge on the same answer: the Bible is God’s revelation of himself to human beings; theologians speak of divine “self-communication.” In other words: God comes to man, first through his Word, from the patriarchs to the prophets, then through his Son.

And precisely, the text says: “Behold, I come. » At all times, and in all circumstances, whoever reads the Bible experiences it: God comes to him. The end of the book of Revelation invites us to make a prayer of it: “Whoever hears, let him say: ‘Come!’ » This prayer ends up being taken up as the conclusion of all the Scriptures: “Come, Lord Jesus! » It’s the “Marana tha” of Saint Paul (1 Corinthians 16, 22) which the father of the monks of the West, John Cassian, said was the prayer of prayers. It is that which the Spirit and the Bride pronounce in common, which the reader of the Apocalypse has already understood to be the heavenly Jerusalem and which is a figure of the people of God, of the Church.

It is Jesus who comes to us

Who is coming? By falling on “I bring with me the salary”, those who know the Bible know that it is about God, because that is how he presents himself in the book of Isaiah (Isaiah 40, 10). He is indeed the alpha and the omega, the letters which open and close the Greek alphabet, for he was at the beginning, and he will be at the end of all things.

The following sentence, moreover, spans the whole of biblical history: it shows the entry into the end of time of those who “washed their clothes” (that is to say, were purified by the blood of the Lamb, an expression to say salvation, as in Revelation 7:14), in the “city” which is the heavenly Jerusalem, while affirming that these the latter have the right of access to the tree of life, which is that of the beginning of the ages, the tree planted in the middle of the garden of paradise (Genesis 2, 9).

At the same time, the one who comes is Jesus, “the descendant of David”, be the Messiah who must be born according to the prophets in the house of David. The evocation of the morning star is also a messianic allusion, because it is thus that we read the oracle of Balaam: “From Jacob ascends a star, from Israel arises a scepter” (Numbers 24, 17).

Where is our thirst? Where is our desire?

Last stage of divine communication: the revelation of who is the one who comes for those who come to him: “He who is thirsty, let him come. Whoever desires it, may he receive the water of life, free of charge. » God is not only the one who comes, he is also the one who brings. But to come to Him, there is one condition: to have the aspiration to meet Him. Must be “one who is thirsty” Where “whoever desires it”. And then, as in John 7:37-38, God unveils the last aspect of his identity: he is the source of living water, the one who gives eternal life.

Regis Burnet is professor of New Testament at the Catholic University of Louvain (Belgium). He notably published Decode a religious painting. New Testament and the Book of Revelation (editions of Cerf).

We would like to give thanks to the writer of this short article for this outstanding material

Biblical meditation: “Come Lord Jesus! »

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