常年期第二主日 2020年01月19日


常年期第二主日
 
若翰精神
 
讀經一:(依49:3,5-6):作上主的僕人
讀經二:(格前1:1-3):為基督而蒙召
福 音:(若1:29-34):若翰為耶穌作證
中國文化: 介之推不言祿;劉備三顧草廬;聖君賢人的禮賢下士。
 
若翰見耶穌走來,便說:請看!消除世界罪惡的天主羔羊。這就是我所說的那一位,他在我之後來到,卻在我以前存在。因他先我而存在,於是我作證:他就是天主子。(參考若1:29-34)
 
「請看!天主的羔羊。請看,除免世罪者。」這是我們每日在領聖體時所聽到的話??聖若翰的話。他被稱為耶穌的前驅,是一個向世界介紹耶穌的人。
 
若翰自己有很多門徒。在耶穌出道以前,他已經宣講、施洗,有相當高的地位和名譽。連耶穌也親自來到他面前受他的洗禮。從人性的角度來看,他曾經顯赫一時,有很多聽眾、很多追隨者。甚至黑落德王也佩服他。這樣的人,如何能容忍甚至主動介紹另一個人,並清楚說出,這人比他自己更偉大呢?
 
這象徵另一人將會取代他的地位,這預示聽過他講道的人要去聽另一位講道,跟隨他的人要跟隨另一位。他這樣做,無疑將會使自己很快就從眾人的焦點中消失。
 
若翰從不諱言:「他要長大,我要縮小;他要興盛,我要消退。」這簡單的說話,為今日很多人來說是致命性的。世上很少人能自願放下自己的權力、地位和面子。因為失去了權勢、地位,就是失去了一切。
 
這就是若翰精神。
 
「看!這位就是天主的羔羊、除免世罪者。你們去跟隨他吧,他是救主、天主子。我只是他的工具,他的僕人,他的前驅。我要做的已經做完,我站在台前的時間,已經到了落幕的時候。」
 
不以自己為中心,總是想到別人,這種「若翰精神」在中國的文化中,我們可以看到的,有春秋時晉國介之推的不言祿、不貪功、不追求立功之後受賞;有劉備的三顧草廬,和許多聖君賢相的禮賢下士。他們可能不免有為自己打算之心,但對屬下的欣賞、肯定,卻不是所有在上者能人人做得到的。大多數的人是:有過諉於他人,有功自己獨霸。
 
若翰被揀選作為基督的前驅,其實我們每人都被天主揀選了。依撒意亞先知書第49章說:上主對我說:「以色列,你是我的僕人,我因你而自豪。」其實上主看中了我,他是我的力量。當我尚在母胎時,他便培養我作他的僕人。他對我說:「你要作我的僕人,復興雅各伯支派,領回以色列的遺民,還是小事,我更要使你作萬民的光明,使我的救恩達於地極。」
 
我們每一個人都已蒙召,都是上主的僕人,他看中了我們。當我們尚在母胎時,他已培養我們去復興雅各伯支派,領回以色列的遺民。遺民就是那些堅持信仰、不離棄上主的一小撮遺留下來的人。
 
我們也要復興教會,領回那些在教會內忠於上主的人。不單如此,我們更要成為萬民之光,使救恩達到天涯海角。我們要成為僕人,把耶穌介紹給人,這就是若翰精神。
 
有一段可以反映若翰精神的新聞:有一波音737飛機失事掉落河中。當時天氣嚴寒,河水結冰,救援工作很困難。遇難者中有一位年約50歲的男人,每次當他接到救生圈時,他總是遞給他旁邊的人。如此共五次。最後當直升機要救他時,他已消失在冰封的河水裡。沒有人知道他的名字,只稱他為「水中的人」。
 
其實,當「水中的人」每一次把救生圈遞給其它遇難者時,他應該知道他有什麼命運與下場,但他卻做了。這位「水中的人」告訴我們一個重要的訊息:「人」這個名詞,可以有大尊貴、大慈悲的含義。消失自己、成就別人,這是若翰精神的現代版。
 
今日的傳教士,很多都有這種精神。他們帶著三個英文字去傳教:begin, beget, be gone,就是開始、生產、離開。因為每當一位傳教士去到一個地方時,他就開始傳福音的事業。然後他培育地方教會,讓成熟的地方教會誕生。地方教會誕生後,他就功成身退。這是傳教士的「若翰精神」。
 
當我們要去幫助人時,也讓我們記得這種精神。重要的不是幫助人,而是與人同在。我們要支持及肯定他們,培養他們成長和自立,使他們不再需要依賴我們。他們要長大,我們要縮小;他們要站在台前,我們要退居幕後。我們的所作所為,完全是為別人的好處。這也是「若翰精神」。
 
「看,這是天主的羔羊,除免世罪者。」讓我們介紹耶穌給別人,也將別人介紹出去。我們要成為別人背後的支持者、肯定者及欣賞者。
常年期第二主日
 
若翰精神
 
读经一:(依49:3,5-6):作上主的仆人
读经二:(格前1:1-3):为基督而蒙召
福 音:(若1:29-34):若翰为耶稣作证
中国文化: 介之推不言禄;刘备三顾草庐;圣君贤人的礼贤下士。
 
若翰见耶稣走来,便说:请看!消除世界罪恶的天主羔羊。这就是我所说的那一位,他在我之后来到,却在我以前存在。因他先我而存在,於是我作证:他就是天主子。(参考若1:29-34)
 
「请看!天主的羔羊。请看,除免世罪者。」这是我们每日在领圣体時所听到的话??圣若翰的话。他被称为耶稣的前驱,是一個向世界介绍耶稣的人。
 
若翰自己有很多门徒。在耶稣出道以前,他已经宣讲、施洗,有相当高的地位和名誉。连耶稣也亲自来到他面前受他的洗礼。从人性的角度来看,他曾经显赫一時,有很多听众、很多追随者。甚至黑落德王也佩服他。这样的人,如何能容忍甚至主动介绍另一個人,并清楚说出,这人比他自己更伟大呢?
 
这象徵另一人将会取代他的地位,这预示听過他讲道的人要去听另一位讲道,跟随他的人要跟随另一位。他这样做,无疑将会使自己很快就从众人的焦点中消失。
 
若翰从不讳言:「他要长大,我要缩小;他要兴盛,我要消退。」这简单的说话,为今日很多人来说是致命性的。世上很少人能自願放下自己的权力、地位和面子。因为失去了权势、地位,就是失去了一切。
 
这就是若翰精神。
 
「看!这位就是天主的羔羊、除免世罪者。你们去跟随他吧,他是救主、天主子。我只是他的工具,他的仆人,他的前驱。我要做的已经做完,我站在台前的時间,已经到了落幕的時候。」
 
不以自己为中心,总是想到别人,这种「若翰精神」在中国的文化中,我们可以看到的,有春秋時晋国介之推的不言禄、不贪功、不追求立功之后受赏;有刘备的三顾草庐,和许多圣君贤相的礼贤下士。他们可能不免有为自己打算之心,但对属下的欣赏、肯定,却不是所有在上者能人人做得到的。大多数的人是:有過诿於他人,有功自己独霸。
 
若翰被拣选作为基督的前驱,其实我们每人都被天主拣选了。依撒意亚先知书第49章说:上主对我说:「以色列,你是我的仆人,我因你而自豪。」其实上主看中了我,他是我的力量。当我尚在母胎時,他便培养我作他的仆人。他对我说:「你要作我的仆人,复兴雅各伯支派,领回以色列的遗民,还是小事,我更要使你作万民的光明,使我的救恩达於地极。」
 
我们每一個人都已蒙召,都是上主的仆人,他看中了我们。当我们尚在母胎時,他已培养我们去复兴雅各伯支派,领回以色列的遗民。遗民就是那些坚持信仰、不離弃上主的一小撮遗留下来的人。
 
我们也要复兴教会,领回那些在教会内忠於上主的人。不单如此,我们更要成为万民之光,使救恩达到天涯海角。我们要成为仆人,把耶稣介绍给人,这就是若翰精神。
 
有一段可以反映若翰精神的新闻:有一波音737飞机失事掉落河中。当時天气严寒,河水结冰,救援工作很困难。遇难者中有一位年约50岁的男人,每次当他接到救生圈時,他总是递给他旁边的人。如此共五次。最后当直升机要救他時,他已消失在冰封的河水里。没有人知道他的名字,只称他为「水中的人」。
 
其实,当「水中的人」每一次把救生圈递给其它遇难者時,他应該知道他有什么命运与下场,但他却做了。这位「水中的人」告诉我们一個重要的讯息:「人」这個名词,可以有大尊贵、大慈悲的含义。消失自己、成就别人,这是若翰精神的现代版。
 
今日的传教士,很多都有这种精神。他们带著三個英文字去传教:begin, beget, be gone,就是開始、生產、離開。因为每当一位传教士去到一個地方時,他就開始传福音的事业。然后他培育地方教会,让成熟的地方教会诞生。地方教会诞生后,他就功成身退。这是传教士的「若翰精神」。
 
当我们要去帮助人時,也让我们记得这种精神。重要的不是帮助人,而是与人同在。我们要支持及肯定他们,培养他们成长和自立,使他们不再需要依赖我们。他们要长大,我们要缩小;他们要站在台前,我们要退居幕后。我们的所作所为,完全是为别人的好处。这也是「若翰精神」。
 
「看,这是天主的羔羊,除免世罪者。」让我们介绍耶稣给别人,也将别人介绍出去。我们要成为别人背后的支持者、肯定者及欣赏者。
SECOND SUNDAY IN ORDINARY TIME
 
The Spirit of St. John, the Baptist
 
First Reading: (Is 49:3, 5-6) : To Be the Servant of the Lord
Second Reading: (1 Cor 1:1-3) : Chosen for Christ
Gospel : (Jn 1:29-34) : John the Baptist gave witness to Jesus
Chinese Culture:
-“Jie Zhi Tui's refusal for a court office (1)
-“Liu Bei's three visits to Zhu Ge Liang in his humble hut (2)
-“Wise kings and sages going out of their way to honor the talented and the leaned (3)
 
John saw Jesus coming towards him and declared, ‘Here is the Lamb of God who takes away the sin of the world.’ This is he of whom I said, ‘After me comes a man who ranks ahead of me because he was before me. I myself have seen and have testified that this is the Son of God (Jn 1: 29-34)“
 
“See! Here is the Lamb of God. See, here is the one who takes away the sin of the world!” These are the words we hear each time we receive Holy Communion, the words of John the Baptist. He is referred to as Jesus' Precursor, the one who introduced Jesus to the world.
 
John himself had many disciples. Before Jesus made himself public, John had already started preaching and baptizing. He was highly regarded and had a good reputation. Even Jesus came to him to be baptized. From a human point of view, he had a big audience and a large following. Even King Herod admired him. How could a person like that tolerate and even take the initiative to introduce another person and state clearly that that person was even greater than himself?
 
This signifies that the other person would assume his own position and indicates that in the future those who once listened to him would listen to another, and those following him would follow the other. Doing this surely meant that soon he would no long attract attention and would lose everything.
 
John never refrained from saying: “He must increase, I must decrease; one who is more powerful than I is coming after me..” People today would say that simple words like this would be suicidal. There are few in the world who would willingly give up their own power, status and face. To lose one’s power and status means to lose everything.
 
This is the spirit of St. John, the Baptist.
 
See, this is the Lamb of God who takes away the sin of the world! You should follow him – he is the Savior, the Son of God. I am only his instrument, his servant, the one who came before him. I have accomplished what needed to be done, I have stood at the front of the stage; now is time for the curtain to close.
 
Not to put oneself at the center but always to think of others was the spirit of John the Baptist. This spirit can be found also in our Chinese culture. In the state of Jin in the Era of Spring and Autumn there was “Jie Zhi Tui's refusal for a court office,(1) He refused fame and high position even though they were awarded him. There was also the example of Liu Bei's three visits to Zhu Ge Liang in his humble hut”(2) and the many examples of the “Wise kings and sages going out of their way to honor the talented and learned.”(3) It was inevitable that they planned for themselves but their appreciation and affirmation for their subordinates were attitudes not many of those in power possess. Most people adopt the attitude of putting the blame on others and taking credit for themselves.
 
John the Baptist was chosen to be Jesus' Precursor. Actually we too are chosen by God. In Chapter 49 Isaiah says, “The Lord said to me, ‘You are my servant, Israel, in whom I will be glorified. I am honored in the sight of the Lord, and my God has become my strength. The Lord formed me in the womb to be his servant. He says, ‘Iit is too light a thing that you should be my servant to raise up the tribes of Jacob and to restore the survivors of Israel; I will give you as a light to the nations, that my salvation may reach to the end of the earth.
 
Every one of us is being called, we all are the servants of God –and God has looked on us with delight. When we were still in our mothers' womb, God formed us to revive the tribes of Jacob and bring back the remnant of Israel. The ‘remnant’ are the survivors, small in number, who persist in their faith and do not abandon God.
 
We too must revive the Church and bring back those who are loyal to God in the Church, too. Not only that, we must become light for thousands of people so that God's salvation reaches to the ends of the earth. We must become servants, bringing Jesus to the people – this is the spirit of John the Baptist.
 
There was a piece of news that truly reflected the spirit of John the Baptist, when a. Boeing 747 crashed into the river. At the time it was icy cold and the water was frozen over. Rescue work was extremely difficult. There was a 50-year old man among those waiting to be rescued. However, each time the safety buoy was passed to him, he passed it on to the next person. This happened 5 times. Finally when the helicopter arrived to rescue him, he was lost to sight. No one knew his name, he could only be referred to as “the man in the water”.
 
In fact, each time “the man in the water” passed the buoy to others he would have known very well his fate and destiny. He still did it anyway. This “man in the water” tells us a very important message: the word “man” could well mean something noble and merciful. To ‘lose’ oneself and put others' accomplishments to the fore is a modern version of the spirit of St. John.
 
Today, many missionaries also have this spirit. They go to the mission land with 3 English words: begin, beget, be gone – that is, begin (to preach), to produce (successors) then leave that place. All missionaries begin their ministry of preaching the Gospel in a certain place. They nurture the local church and when it is mature, it will take up the task of the missionaries. Then it is time for the missionary to leave. That is the spirit of John the Baptist in missionaries.
 
When we have helped others, let us also have the same spirit. What is most important is not to help others, but to be there with the people. We must support and affirm others, nurture them to maturity and independence so that they need not depend on others. They must grow to maturity and we must disappear. They must step to the front and we must retire to the rear. Our deeds should be solely for the good of other people. That too is the spirit of John the Baptist.
 
“See, this is the Lamb of God who takes away the sin of the world.” Let us bring Jesus to people and those people to other persons. Let us become people who support, affirm and admire others, remaining ourselves in the background.
 
(1) 介之推不言祿;
(2) 劉備三顧草廬;
(3) 聖君賢人的禮賢下士。

現場講道(粵語)

教友證道


神父講道


現場講道文稿

主日八分半(彌撒講道)

粵語講道


普通話講道



 

徐錦堯@fr.luketsui.idv.hk 2020