Hello my friends-in-Christ,
This past Tuesday, I just completed an 8-week study of the Theology of the Body. It was coordinated by Emily McCarty at St. Athanasius. Each week, we would watch a 30-minute video of the presenter, Christopher West, explaining different aspects of this theology, written by Pope John Paul II, and discuss the material presented that day. It is my first experience with this subject, so I still have more studying to do. However, just from these 8 sessions, I cannot express enough how important it is for EVERY CHRISTIAN to become familiar with this theology. I strongly believe that this new information can REVOLUTIONIZE our world, making it a much better place for everyone.
Theology of the Body explains why sex is not a bad thing, instead, it is a blessing. The theology delves into why we were made Female and Male, how sex is a renewal of our wedding vows, how marriage is a sign that points to our eventual union with God, why priests are celibate, and more. It is important information that will help bring you so much closer to God, help you to know how to handle the societal issues today, and give you insight into how to address these issues with your children, spouse, etc.
If you ever get the chance, I suggest you take part in a Theology of the Body educational series or read a book about it. Christopher West has written books relating to this topic, like “Theology of the Body for Beginners” and “Good News about Sex and Marriage.” Plus, there are other books out there. I promise, you will say “Why wasn’t I taught this years ago and why am I just now hearing about this? This is great!” It is so important for us Christians to understand the reasoning behind our beliefs so that we can articulate it to others and to live our own lives according to God’s will.
In all, Theology of the Body is not an anatomical discussion or the “birds and the bees” talk. Instead, it is theological. It is backed by the bible and our own deep knowledge about what we are all searching for and needing in our lives . . . LOVE. It is a wealth of information explaining who we are and why we were created male and female. Please, at least, learn a little about the Theology of the Body so that you can make an informed decision about this teaching. It will not only benefit you personally, but your family as well.
Now that I’ve given my two cents about the Theology of the Body (but probably not the last you will hear me talk about it), let’s delve into this week’s Gospel of Luke study.
Read Luke 3:1-4:13 (Preparation for the Public Ministry)
This week’s reading starts off with text that exemplifies Luke’s tendency for including historical information.
John the Baptist tells of how things will change upon the Lord’s arrival in 3:5. His message is indicative of a recurring theme in Luke’s Gospel, a reversal of things (i.e. rich become poor; hungry will be full; the lowly will be exalted).
You probably have heard the saying, “Don’t judge a person until you have walked a mile in his shoes.” How better to be able to help others than to be placed into their spot? Jesus has been tempted. Therefore, just like us he knows what it is like to be tempted. He has also felt hunger and the prospect of power. He is human and has human needs. However, through him, we are able to see how we should live our lives.
- Why does John the Baptist call the crowds a “brood of vipers” (v. 3:7)? Are you included in this crowd?
- What do you envision while reading verses 3:9 and 3:17? John the Baptist refers to the coming of the Lord. Does his analogy frighten you? Are you producing good fruit? If so, how? If not, what changes do you need to make in your life?
- Jesus receives the Holy Spirit prior to going to the desert and being tempted by Satan. Do you find comfort in your baptism, knowing the Holy Spirit is with you as well? (v. 3:21-22)
- What do the three temptations of Jesus represent (v. 4:1-4:13)?
Please SHARE your responses to these questions on the Week 3 page.
Thank you and God bless you all,
John the Baptist seemed quite harsh in life & his preaching. If we recall he wore animal skins & his diet consisted of insects. I wonder what drew the ‘multitudes’ to him to be baptized. They did wonder if he was the Messiah. But he seemed to preach fear v9 & 17, not love much different from the One who was to follow.