A Ransom for the Many
by Bishop Robert Barron . October 19, 2003 .
What does it mean to say that Jesus died for our sins? How precisely does his cross save us? The first Christians saw sin as a sort of imprisonment, like being held for ransom, and in the dying and rising of Jesus, they experienced freedom. What freed them was God's solidarity with them in their fear, even their fear of death. How do you experience the power of Jesus' death on the cross? How does it set you free?
The God of the Nations
by Bishop Robert Barron . March 30, 2003 .
Though the Enlightenment taught us to privatize and interiorize our religion, the Bible has a robustly "political" sense of God's activity. God's will is revealed in the movements and struggles of the nations. National sin (like personal sin) results in divine judgment. This deeply Biblical intuition is revealed in Lincoln's reading of the Civil War and in Karl Barth's interpretation of the First World War.
The Angels and the Wild Beasts
by Bishop Robert Barron . March 9, 2003 .
Mark tells us that Jesus went into the desert and there was ministered to by angels while he lived among the beasts. One of the marks of sin is an aliention of the body and the spirit, the animal and the angelic in all of us. Jesus represents the proper balance between the two.
The Paralysis of Sin
by Bishop Robert Barron . February 23, 2003 .
God wants nothing more than for us to be fully alive. Sin cramps us, paralyzes us, prevents us from flourishing. Jesus' whole life and being is God's "yes" to human beings. So he forgives the sin of the paralytic and then invites him to walk. The glory of God is a human being fully alive.
Here Comes With Power the Lord God
by Bishop Robert Barron . December 8, 2002 .
The God who comes to save us is one who rules with a strong arm, who brings a reward and recompense, who gathers and feeds his sheep, who clears a highway before him. All of these rich metaphors and images are from the prophet Isaiah, the greatest of the Old Testament Advent figures.
A People Who Wait…
by Bishop Robert Barron . December 1, 2002 .
The French spiritual writer Simone Weil said that the core of the Christian life is waiting, watching, expecting. We cannot save ourselves, but we can look with rapt attention to the one who can. In this sense, we are, permanently, an Advent people.
Get Thee Behind Me, Satan
by Bishop Robert Barron . September 1, 2002 .
Last week we heard of the grace by which Peter correctly confessed the identity of Jesus. This week, we hear of his weakness. Opposing the cross, he becomes an ally of the dark powers. The Church is infallible and the Church is made up of sinners. When we forget one or the other, we fall into trouble.
The Man Born Blind
by Bishop Robert Barron . March 10, 2002 .
Blindness is a great Biblical symbol of spiritual blindness, the darkening and distortion of our vision. Jesus salves and washes the blind man in John's Gospel in order to restore his sight. In the same way, he washes us (in Baptism) and salves us (in the other sacraments) so that we might see with his eyes.
Jesus in the Desert
by Bishop Robert Barron . February 17, 2002 .
Just after his baptism, Jesus retires to the wilderness and there he faces the tempter. We enter into this experience with him, facing the same struggle. Like the Lord himself, we wrestle with the temptations to make sensual pleasure, the ego, and power the center of our lives. In resisting all three, we make the acceptance of God's will and mission possible.