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From: John 1:47-51

The Calling of the First Disciples (Continuation)

[47] Jesus saw Nathanael coming to Him, and said to him, “Behold, an Israelite
indeed, in whom is no guile!” [48] Nathanael said to Him, “How do you know me?”
Jesus answered him, “Before Philip called you, when you were under the fig tree,
I saw you.” [49] Nathanael answered Him, “Rabbi, you are the Son of God! You
are the King of Israel! [50] Jesus answered him, “Because I said to you, I saw
you under the fig tree, do you believe? You shall see greater things than these.”
[51] And He said to him, “Truly, truly, I say to you, you will see Heaven opened,
and the angels of God ascending and descending upon the Son of Man.”


45-51. The Apostle Philip is so moved that he cannot but tell his friend Nathanael
(Bartholomew) about his wonderful discovery (verse 45). “Nathanael had heard
from Scripture that Jesus must come from Bethlehem, from the people of David.
This belief prevailed among the Jews and also the prophet had proclaimed it of
old, saying: ‘But you, O Bethlehem, who are little to be among the clans of Ju-
dah, from you shall come forth for me one who is to be ruler of Israel’ (Micah 5
2). Therefore, when he heard that He was from Nazareth, he was troubled and in
doubt, since he found that the announcement of Philip was not in agreement with
the words of the prophecy” (St. John Chrysostom, “Hom. on St. John”, 20, 1).

A Christian may find that, in trying to communicate his faith to others, they raise
difficulties. What should he do? What Philip did — not trust his own explanation,
but invite them to approach Jesus personally: “Come and see” (verse 46). In other
words, a Christian should bring his fellow-men, his brothers into Jesus’ presence
through the means of grace which He has given them and which the Church mini-
sters — frequent reception of the sacraments, and devout Christian practices.

Nathanael, a sincere person (verse 47), goes along with Philip to see Jesus; he
makes personal contact with our Lord (verse 48), and the outcome is that he re-
ceives faith (the result of his ready reception of grace, which reaches him through
Christ’s human nature: verse 49).

As far as we can deduce from the Gospels, Nathanael is the first Apostle to
make an explicit confession of faith in Jesus as Messiah and as Son of God. La-
ter on, St. Peter, in a more formal way, will recognize our Lord’s divinity (cf. Mat-
thew 16:16). Here (verse 51) Jesus evokes a text from Daniel (7:13) to confirm
and give deeper meaning to the words spoken by His new disciple.

Source: “The Navarre Bible: Text and Commentaries”. Biblical text from the
Revised Standard Version and New Vulgate. Commentaries by members of
the Faculty of Theology, University of Navarre, Spain.

Published by Four Courts Press, Kill Lane, Blackrock, Co. Dublin, Ireland, and
by Scepter Publishers in the United States.

5 posted on 09/28/2012 8:38:03 PM PDT by Salvation ("With God all things are possible." Matthew 19:26)
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To: All
Scripture readings taken from the Jerusalem Bible, published and copyright © 1966, 1967 and 1968 by Darton, Longman & Todd

Readings at Mass

First reading Daniel 7:9-10,13-14 ©
As I watched:
Thrones were set in place
and one of great age took his seat.
His robe was white as snow,
the hair of his head as pure as wool.
His throne was a blaze of flames,
its wheels were a burning fire.
A stream of fire poured out,
issuing from his presence.
A thousand thousand waited on him,
ten thousand times ten thousand stood before him.
A court was held
and the books were opened.
And I saw, coming on the clouds of heaven,
one like a son of man.
He came to the one of great age
and was led into his presence.
On him was conferred sovereignty,
glory and kingship,
and men of all peoples, nations and languages became his servants.
His sovereignty is an eternal sovereignty
which shall never pass away,
nor will his empire ever be destroyed.

First reading Apocalypse 12:7-12 ©
Now war broke out in heaven, when Michael with his angels attacked the dragon. The dragon fought back with his angels, but they were defeated and driven out of heaven. The great dragon, the primeval serpent, known as the devil or Satan, who had deceived all the world, was hurled down to the earth and his angels were hurled down with him. Then I heard a voice shout from heaven, ‘Victory and power and empire for ever have been won by our God, and all authority for his Christ, now that the persecutor, who accused our brothers day and night before our God, has been brought down. They have triumphed over him by the blood of the Lamb and by the witness of their martyrdom, because even in the face of death they would not cling to life. Let the heavens rejoice and all who live there.’

Psalm Psalm 137:1-5 ©
In the presence of the angels I will bless you, O Lord.
I thank you, Lord, with all my heart:
  you have heard the words of my mouth.
In the presence of the angels I will bless you.
  I will adore before your holy temple.
In the presence of the angels I will bless you, O Lord.
I thank you for your faithfulness and love,
  which excel all we ever knew of you.
On the day I called, you answered;
  you increased the strength of my soul.
In the presence of the angels I will bless you, O Lord.
All earth’s kings shall thank you
  when they hear the words of your mouth.
They shall sing of the Lord’s ways:
  ‘How great is the glory of the Lord!’
In the presence of the angels I will bless you, O Lord.

Gospel Acclamation Ps102:21
Alleluia, alleluia!
Give thanks to the Lord, all his hosts,
his servants who do his will.

Gospel John 1:47-51 ©
When Jesus saw Nathanael coming he said of him, ‘There is an Israelite who deserves the name, incapable of deceit.’ ‘How do you know me?’ said Nathanael ‘Before Philip came to call you,’ said Jesus ‘I saw you under the fig tree.’ Nathanael answered, ‘Rabbi, you are the Son of God, you are the King of Israel.’ Jesus replied, ‘You believe that just because I said: I saw you under the fig tree. so You will see greater things than that.’ And then he added ‘I tell you most solemnly, you will see heaven laid open and, above the Son of Man, the angels of God ascending and descending.’

6 posted on 09/28/2012 8:41:08 PM PDT by Salvation ("With God all things are possible." Matthew 19:26)
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