“One heart and soul.”
A reading from the Acts of the Apostles (Acts 4: 32-37)
The company of those who believed were of one heart and soul, and no one said that any of the things which he possessed was his own, but they had everything in common. And with great power the apostles gave their testimony to the resurrection of the Lord Jesus, and great grace was upon them all. There was not any one needy among them, for as many as were possessors of lands or houses sold them, and brought the proceeds of what was sold and laid it at the apostles’ feet; and distribution was made to each as any had need. Thus Joseph who was surnamed by the apostles Barnabas (which means, Son of encouragement), a Levite, a native of Cyprus, sold a field which belonged to him, and brought the money and laid it at the apostles’ feet.
The word of the Lord.
RESPONSORIAL PSALM Psalm 93:1abc.ie-2.5 (R. 1a)
R/. The Lord is king, with majesty enrobed.
The Lord is king, with majesty enrobed.
The Lord has robed himself with might;
he has girded himself with power. R/.
The world you made firm, not to be moved;
your throne has stood firm from of old.
From all eternity, O Lord, you are. R/.
Truly your decrees are to be trusted.
Holiness is fitting to your house,
O Lord, until the end of time. R/.
ALLELUIA John 3 :15
Alleluia. The Son of man must be lifted up, that whoever believes in him may have eternal life. Alleluia.
“No one has ascended into heaven but he who descended from heaven, the Son of man.”
A reading from the holy Gospel according to John (John 3 :7b-15)
At that time: Jesus said to Nicodemus, “You must be born anew. The wind blows where it wills, and you hear the sound of it, but you do not know where it comes from or where it goes; so it is with every one who is born of the Spirit.” Nicodemus said to him, “How can this be?” Jesus answered him, “Are you a teacher of Israel, and yet you do not understand this? Truly, truly, I say to you, we speak of what we know, and bear witness to what we have seen; but you do not receive our testimony. If I have told you earthly things and you do not believe, how can you believe if I tell you heavenly things? No one has ascended into heaven but he who descended from heaven, the Son of man. And as Moses lifted up the serpent in the wilderness, so must the Son of man be lifted up, that whoever believes in him may have eternal life.”
The Gospel of the Lord.
Jesus teaches Nicodemus that, as the prophets had said, the messianic era should experience an innovation effusion of the Spirit. Jesus places things of the earth against things of heaven. Things of earth are divine truths concerning the human being things of heaven recall the glorification of Jesus. If what he has revealed about human beings is not believed, what he is going to reveal about the Son of Man will be much less believed. But only he who has descended from heaven can speak about heavenly realities. To be saved it is not enough to see the signs of Christ; it is necessary to enter into the mystery of his Death and Resurrection. The Cross is the means of salvation because it unites heaven and earth the divine and the human realities of Christ.