A Note on Today’s Readings Third Sunday after the Epiphany | Year B
Welcome to St. Gabriel’s Parish.
Today we continue the seasonal theme of Jesus’ manifestation (“epiphany”) as the Son of God. John the Baptist’s arrest ended his ministry and now Jesus returns to Galilee and begins his public ministry with the call to repent and the calling of his first disciples. Thus, he announces that in him God’s Kingdom has been initiated.
The Old Testament reading is Jonah’s proclamation of judgment on the city of Nineveh. The city repents and God’s punishment is averted.
We continue to read a portion of 1st Corinthians as we do each Epiphany season. The church is to live at all times as though the end is near, which Paul believed it was. The kingdom of God is near and we should conform our lives to the urgency of the moment. Many Christians believe that these words should not be treated as an absolute rule in light of the fact that the end did not come immediately, as Paul had first thought it would. Nevertheless, his underlying principle does apply: live always in preparation for the end.
We celebrate in community of faith as those living the in-between times. We are at once the disciples of the Lord and his Body in the world and yet sinners who are called to repent. We celebrate Eucharist remembering his death and proclaiming his resurrection, while also looking for his coming again.