A Different Victory

Readings for Sunday, January 11 — The Baptism of the Lord

Isaiah 42: 1-4, 6-7 or Isaiah 55: 1-11; Psalm 29: 1-4, 9-10; Acts 10: 34-38 or John 5: 1-9; Mark 1: 7-11

Suggested Reflection Questions:

  • In the first reading from Isaiah, we hear about how justice will be brought to Earth; however, we hear a lot about what this justice will not look like: not loud or destructive, for instance. What types of qualities would this “victory of justice” have, after hearing what it is not? How would you imagine this taking place in our current time?

  • We hear about victory, again, in the second reading: “And the victory that conquers the world is our faith. Who indeed is the victor over the world but the one who believes that Jesus is the Son of God?” What does victory mean this time? Do you see any relation to the victory you just discussed from the first reading? How does the victory of faith “conquer” the world in our current time?

  • In today’s Gospel reading, we hear the passage about the Baptism of Jesus. Reflect on this scene. Why do you think Jesus chose to be baptized? Now, put yourself in John the Baptist’s place. How would you feel if Jesus came to you, asking this? Finally, if you were baptized when you were too young to remember, why would you choose to be baptized today? If you were baptized when you were not a child, what were some of your reasons for becoming baptized?