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Christmas Weekday on January 4

Daily Mass Readings for a Christmas Weekday on January 4

  • First Reading1 John 3:7-10: True righteousness reflects God’s nature, contrasting with sin aligning with the Devil. Christ came to destroy the Devil’s works. God’s children, born of His essence, don’t persist in sin.
  • Responsorial PsalmPsalm 98: The entire world, its seas, rivers, and mountains celebrate God’s extraordinary acts and victory. His coming to rule the earth promises justice and fairness for all nations.
  • Gospel John 1:35-42: John the Baptist identified Jesus as the Lamb of God, leading two of his disciples to follow Jesus. Curious, they asked Jesus where He stayed, and He invited them to join Him. Among them was Andrew, who, convinced of Jesus’ messianic identity, eagerly informed his brother Simon. Introducing Simon to Jesus, Jesus named him Cephas (Peter), signifying the beginning of their transformative journey as His disciples.

Jesus turned and saw them following him and said to them, “What are you looking for?”

John 1:38

Themes for the Readings for a Christmas Weekday on January 4

The readings for a Christmas weekday on January 4 present several intertwined themes that deepen our understanding of the Christmas mystery and its implications for our lives as Christians:

  1. Righteousness and Divine Nature: The First Reading from 1 John 3:7-10 emphasizes the intrinsic link between true righteousness and God’s nature. This theme invites us to reflect on how the Incarnation of Christ exemplifies perfect righteousness, which contrasts starkly with sin. The reading also underlines the profound truth that through Christ, we are invited to share in God’s nature, moving away from sin and aligning ourselves more closely with divine righteousness.
  2. Victory over Sin and the Role of Christ: Continuing from the theme of righteousness, this reading also highlights Christ’s mission to destroy the works of the Devil. This theme is particularly relevant during the Christmas season, as we celebrate the birth of Jesus, who came into the world as a humble infant yet with a powerful mission to conquer sin and death. The idea of victory over sin is an essential aspect of the Christmas message and Christ’s purpose.
  3. Universal Celebration and God’s Justice: The Responsorial Psalm, Psalm 98, introduces a theme of universal joy and celebration over God’s acts of salvation. The psalmist describes nature itself—seas, rivers, and mountains—rejoicing in God’s justice. This theme expands our understanding of the Christmas event as a cosmic occurrence, not limited to humanity but extending to all creation. It also emphasizes God’s rule over the earth, promising justice and fairness for all nations, a reminder of the universal scope of Christ’s mission.
  4. Discipleship and Personal Transformation: The Gospel from John 1:35-42 brings forth the theme of discipleship. It narrates how the first disciples were drawn to Jesus, marking the beginning of their transformation. This passage invites us to contemplate our own journey of discipleship. As we celebrate the Christmas season, we are reminded that Christ’s birth is a call for us to follow Him, leading to our own personal transformation, just as it did for the first disciples, Andrew and Simon Peter.
  5. Encounter with Christ: Finally, the Gospel story of the disciples’ encounter with Jesus and their subsequent decision to stay with Him is a poignant reminder of the importance of personal encounter in our faith journey. This theme encourages us to seek out and cherish our own personal experiences and encounters with Christ, especially in the context of the joy and intimacy of the Christmas season.

Thoughts for a Christmas Weekday on January 4

On this Christmas weekday on January 4, as we continue to bask in the joy and wonder of Christ’s birth, the readings present a tapestry of themes that deepen our understanding of Jesus’ mission and our call as His followers.

At the heart of today’s Gospel from John 1:35-42 is a moment of profound recognition and response. John the Baptist, seeing Jesus, declares Him to be the “Lamb of God.” This title, rich in Jewish religious symbolism, speaks of sacrifice and redemption, directly connecting to the Paschal Lamb of the Exodus. This is a crucial insight for us, especially in the season of Christmas. It reminds us that the child in the manger is destined for a sacrificial role, one that will bring about the ultimate redemption of humanity.

The response of John’s disciples to this revelation is equally significant. Upon hearing John’s testimony, they follow Jesus, prompted by a spiritual curiosity to know more about this Lamb of God. This encounter culminates in a simple yet profound invitation from Jesus: “Come and see.” Here, Jesus is not just inviting them to witness where He stays but to enter into a relationship with Him, to experience His way of life. It’s an invitation He extends to each of us, especially in the intimacy and joy of the Christmas season.

Andrew’s reaction to his encounter with Jesus is telling. He immediately goes to his brother Simon and tells him, “We have found the Messiah.” This act of sharing the good news is a model for us as disciples. Our encounters with Christ should move us to share our experience with others, inviting them to come and see for themselves. Simon’s meeting with Jesus is transformative, as Jesus gives him a new name, Cephas (Peter), signifying a new identity and purpose in the unfolding plan of God.

The First Reading from 1 John 3:7-10 and the Responsorial Psalm 98 resonate deeply with the Gospel. The epistle speaks of the contrast between righteousness and sin, and the purpose of Christ’s coming — to destroy the works of the Devil. This theme of righteousness aligning with God’s nature finds its fulfillment in Jesus, the righteous one, who invites us to live in that righteousness. In Him, we see the true nature of God and are called to reflect it in our lives.

Psalm 98 calls for a universal celebration of God’s victory and justice, a theme that complements the Gospel’s message of transformation and redemption. As all creation rejoices in God’s salvation, we are reminded that the birth of Christ is a cosmic event, bringing joy and hope not only to humanity but to the entire world.

In these readings, we see a journey from recognition to response, from encounter to transformation. As we reflect on them, we are invited to recognize Jesus as the Lamb of God in our lives, to respond to His invitation to come and see, to share our encounter with others, and to embrace the transformative journey of discipleship. The righteousness that Christ embodies and calls us to is not just a moral standard but a participation in the divine life, a life of deep relationship with God and with one another, echoing the joy and hope of Christmas.

Prayer for a Christmas Weekday on January 4

Lord Jesus, just your first disciples followed You, inspire us to seek and stay with You in our daily lives. May our encounter with You transform us, leading us to invite others into Your presence. Amen.

Homilies and Reflections for a Christmas Weekday on January 4

USCCB Reflection: Incarnation and New Beginnings

This USCCB video reflection for a Christmas weekday on January 4 reminds us that following Christmas, we stay close to the Incarnation’s mystery, filled with wonder and gratitude for Jesus, who humbly entered the world as its light. This time prompts us to reconcile with God and improve spiritually, just as we might make New Year’s resolutions for other aspects of life. The Gospel invites us to consider what we seek in life, reminding us that our search for happiness is a quest for God’s love. Responding to God’s immense love requires faith and a grateful heart. Making spiritual resolutions to pray, read scripture, and love genuinely helps us grow in trust and peace, relying on God’s grace.

Frequently Asked Questions for a Christmas Weekday on January 4

What are the Mass readings for a Christmas Weekday on January 4?

  • First Reading1 John 3:7-10: Righteousness Versus Sin
  • Responsorial PsalmPsalm 98: Global Rejoicing in Salvation
  • Gospel John 1:35-42: First Disciples of Jesus

What is the significance of the First Reading (1 John 3:7-10) for a Christmas weekday on January 4?

It emphasizes the link between righteousness and God’s nature, contrasting it with sin. It highlights Christ’s mission to destroy the works of the Devil and calls us to live in righteousness, reflecting God’s nature.

How does Psalm 98 contribute to the themes of the readings for a Christmas weekday on January 4?

Psalm 98 depicts a universal celebration of God’s victory and justice. It complements the themes of the Incarnation and Christ’s mission by illustrating the joy and hope His birth brings to all creation.

What does the Gospel for a Christmas weekday on January 4 (John 1:35-42) teach about discipleship?

It shows the initial steps of discipleship, starting with recognizing Jesus as the Messiah and responding to His call. It invites us to seek a personal encounter with Jesus and to share this experience with others.

Why is Jesus referred to as the “Lamb of God” in the Gospel for a Christmas weekday on January 4?

This title connects Jesus to the concept of sacrifice and redemption, foreshadowing His role in humanity’s salvation. It signifies that Jesus is the ultimate sacrificial lamb who brings about our redemption.

How can we apply the message of these readings for a Christmas weekday on January 4 to our daily life?

We’re encouraged to recognize and respond to Jesus in our lives, embrace the call to righteousness, and share our faith experience with others, embodying the joy and transformation brought by Christ’s birth.

What is the main theme that connects all the readings for a Christmas weekday on January 4?

The theme of transformation through a personal encounter with Christ, the joy of His birth, and the call to live in righteousness and share the good news are central to all the readings.

How does the theme of righteousness in the First Reading relate to the Christmas season?

It reminds us that Jesus’ birth is a call to live in the righteousness of God, moving away from sin and embodying the divine nature revealed in Christ.

What does Simon Peter’s renaming signify in the Gospel reading for a Christmas weekday on January 4?

It signifies a new identity and purpose in God’s plan, symbolizing the transformative power of following Jesus.

Can these readings be related to New Year’s resolutions?

Yes, they can inspire spiritual resolutions focused on growing closer to God, embracing righteousness, and living out our discipleship in practical ways.

Is there a specific action the readings for a Christmas weekday on January 4 encourage us to take?

They encourage us to deepen our relationship with Jesus, be open to transformation, share our faith journey, and celebrate the joy of Christ’s birth as a continuous source of inspiration.

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