“We are witnesses of these things, and so is the Holy Spirit.”
A reading from the Acts of the Apostles Acts (Acts 5:27-33)
In those days: When the officers had brought the apostles, they set them before the council. And the high priest questioned them, saying, “We strictly charged you not to teach in this name, yet here you have filled Jerusalem with your teaching and you intend to bring this man’s blood upon us.” But Peter and the apostles answered, “We must obey God rather than men. The God of our fathers raised Jesus whom you killed by hanging him on a tree. God exalted him at his right hand as Leader and Saviour, to give repentance to Israel and forgiveness of sins. And we are witnesses of these things, and so is the Holy Spirit whom God has given to those who obey him.” When they heard this they were enraged and wanted to kill them.
The word of the Lord.
RESPONSORIAL PSALM Ps 34:2 and 9, 17-18.19-20 (R. see 7a)
R/. The lowly one called, and the Lord heard him.
I will bless the Lord at all times,
praise of him is always in my mouth.
Taste and see that the Lord is good.
Blessed the man who seeks refuge in him. R/.
The Lord turns his face against the wicked
to destroy their remembrance from the earth.
When the just cry out, the Lord hears,
and rescues them in all their distress. R/.
The Lord is close to the broken-hearted;
those whose spirit is crushed he will save.
Many are the trials of the just man,
but from them all the Lord will rescue him. R/.
ALLELUIA John 20:29
Alleluia. You believed, Thomas, because you have seen me, says the Lord; blessed are those who have not seen and yet believe. Alleluia.
“The Father loves the Son, and has given all things into his hand.”
A reading from the holy Gospel according to John (John 3:31 -36)
Jesus said to Nicodemus, “He who comes from above is above all; he who is of the earth belongs to the earth, and of the earth he speaks; he who comes from heaven is above all. He bears witness to what he has seen and heard, yet no one receives his testimony; he who receives his testimony sets his seal to this, that God is true. For he whom God has sent utters the words of God, for it is not by measure that he gives the Spirit; the Father loves the Son, and has given all things into his hand. He who believes in the Son has eternal life; he who does not obey the Son shall not see life, but the wrath of God rests upon him.”
The Gospel of the Lord.
Salvation is faith in the Son whom the Father loves and to whom he has given everything. God has sent him into the world and he pronounces the words of God and gives the Spirit to all who accept his testimony. And they in turn, in union with Christ, bear witness to the reality of Christ as head and saviour. This process does not take place through reflection, maturation or human experience; it is solely the work of the Holy Spirit. It is the Spirit who offers the gift of faith, and faith is listening and obedient response to the One who calls. Listening to this voice and responding to it means shifting the centre of our life from ourselves to Christ, placing ourselves in him and understanding ourselves in reference to Christ and above all taking him as the sole criterion of our life and values.