TUESDAY, FOURTH WEEK OF LENT
Ez 47: 1-9, 12; Ps 46: 2-3, 5-6, 8-9; Jn 5: 1-16
JESUS – THE SPRING OF LIVING WATER
Water served as an apt source for imageries and miracles in the Bible. Today, in the first reading, Ezekiel describes the vision he had at the entrance of the temple of the Lord. The water that gushed from the temple was so pure that it made the Dead Sea fresh, helped trees produce fresh fruit and leaves that were medicinal. Why was this water so magical? Was it intrinsically healing? Definitely not! The water was made holy and sanctified because it flowed from the temple which is the seat and the dwelling place of God. Simply put, it gushed forth from God.
This imagery so tactfully employed by Ezekiel is realized in the healing episode at the pool of Bethsaida. The ill man waited in vain for 38 years to be helped into the water of the pool when it was disturbed and be healed. Little did he know that this water was useless as it was surrounded by the myths of superstition. However, as providence would have it, he was healed by Jesus – the spring of living water. The water that flowed from the temple in the first reading is personified in Jesus – the visible face of the Eternal Father. From him flowed the water of mercy, so pure and gentle that it healed not just the man at Bethsaida but all the generations of the world henceforth.
“Now, you are well again; be sure not to sin any more, or something worse may happen to you.” In this season of Lent, as we reflect on the passion and crucifixion of the Lord, this gospel passage points to the true healing waters, which flowed along with blood from the side of the Lord on the cross when he was pierced with the lance. The properties of water, so versatile, were made holy through this event, which brings life and healing even today through the sacrament of Baptism. Jesus alone is the Spring of Living waters. Let us remain close to this spring, seeking sustenance and nourishment in its waters!
Response: The Lord of hosts is with us; the God of Jacob is our stronghold.
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