"The mystery was made known to me by revelation" Ephesians 3:3 Today’s first reading reminds us that faith only happens when it is preceded by revelation. As we begin this year of faith we are reminded many times in the Scriptures that God must reveal Himself to us before we can believe. "No one knows who the Son is except the Father, or who the Father is except the Son and anyone to whom the Son chooses to reveal him." Luke 10:22
The word revelation in the inspired Greek New Testament is apokalyptō which means to unhide’ or uncover. It comes from two Greek words apo (from) and kalyptō cover or hid. In the New Testament we are reminded some 44 times that God must reveal Himself to us if we are ever able to embrace Him by faith. As a young man St Paul of the Cross when deeply troubled with doubts of faith would lay his head in agony on the communion rail and beg God for the gift of revelation.
The Old Testament first reminded us that God must open our eyes if we are to see the things of God. "Now Samuel did not yet know the Lord: The word of the Lord had not yet been revealed to him." 1 Samuel 3:7 There he built an altar, and he called the place El Bethel,*because it was there that God revealed himself to him when he was fleeing from his brother. Genesis 35:7 the word in Hebrew is gala which like the Greek apokalyptō means uncover, or remove scales from the eyes.
We must start this year of faith with humility by begging God to grace us and our love ones with revelation. As G.K. Chesterton reminds us in the Everlasting Man, "For God is by His name a mystery". In our weakness of faith we are forcefully reminded of how very much we need the mercy of revelation. " To me, the very least of all the holy ones, this grace was given, to preach to the Gentiles the inscrutable riches of Christ, and to bring to light for all what is the plan of the mystery hidden from ages past in God who created all things, so that the manifold wisdom of God might now be made known." Ephesians 3:8
Fr. Bob Weiss, C.P. preaches Parish Missions and is a member of the Passionist Community in Louisville, Kentucky.