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Today's Gospel + short theological explanation

Sunday 3rd (B) of Advent

Gospel text (Jn 1,6-8.19-28): A man came, sent by God; his name was John. He came to bear witness, as a witness to introduce the Light so that all might believe through him. He was not the Light but a witness to introduce the Light. This was the testimony of John (…): «I baptize you with water, but among you stands one whom you do not know; although he comes after me, I am not worthy to untie the strap of his sandal» (…).

Christ's triple coming

EDITORIAL TEAM evangeli.net (based on texts by Benedict XVI) (Città del Vaticano, Vatican)

Today, the Baptist testifies that "God-Light” is in the middle of us. The "coming" of God —continuous, and as it were, “co-natural” with His very being— is centered in the two principal comings of Christ: His Incarnation and His glorious return at the end of time. The Advent season lives the whole of this polarity...

In the first days the accent falls on the expectation of the Lord’s final coming. With Christmas approaching, the dominant note instead is on the commemoration of the event at Bethlehem, so that we may recognize it as the "fullness of time". Between these two "manifested" comings, it is possible to identify a third one, "intermediate" and "hidden", and which occurs in the souls of believers, and, as it were, builds a sort of "bridge" between the first and the last coming. In the first, Christ was our redemption; in the last coming He will reveal himself to us as our life; in this lays our repose and consolation.

—For that coming of Jesus which we might call a "spiritual incarnation", the archetype is always Mary: she teaches us to expect a Christ that is coming.