BEING AN APOSTLE
January 24, 2014
Today’s gospel: Mark 3:13-19
A major part of the New Evangelization is reaching out to lapsed Catholics. Since the great majority of Catholics are lapsed and nominal, then this is a very huge task. For the Church to be able to reach everyone, those who have already met Christ and are trying to live Christ should also share Christ. They need to become evangelizers.
Now to be a Christian is to be a disciple, and to be a disciple is to be an evangelizer. This work is not just for clerics, catechists, missionaries, or certain gifted lay leaders. Jesus issued the command to evangelize to all. All are sent. To be sent is to be an apostle.
What constituted the call of the original twelve apostles?
First, they were those “whom (Jesus) wanted” (v.13c). We are chosen according to God’s eternal plan. Jesus, in loving us and saving us, wants even more for us. He wants us to have the privilege of continuing his work, to be instruments of his salvation.
Second, they were those who were “summoned” (v.13b). We are called. We are brought into his presence and into his company. We are among those special people whom the Lord favors.
Third, “they came to him.” (v.13d). We need to respond. We need to present ourselves before the Lord. We need to enter into his presence and enter into an intimate personal relationship with him. We need to leave all behind, and offer him our all.
Fourth, they were “appointed” (v.14a). Given our response, we are then appointed. We are commissioned. We are made stewards of his gift of salvation for the world. We are his ambassadors. We are his witnesses. We represent him, and speak in his name.
Fifth, Jesus “sent them forth to preach” (v.14c). This is our basic task, to proclaim the good news of salvation in Jesus. We are to share Christ, so that people may come into faith in him.
Sixth, they were “to have authority to drive out demons” (v.15). As when we evangelize we enter into spiritual warfare, we are assured of the victory already won by Jesus on the cross. Jesus expelled demons, and we have that same authority. We are to help liberate Satan’s captives.
The above were those “whom he also named apostles” (v.14b). Now you are among those whom Jesus has called, anointed, and sent forth. Go and do the work of an apostle.
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God bless you.
“For to me life is Christ, and death is gain.” (Phil 1:21)