Man is redeemed by Love… Jesus Christ has ‘redeemed’ us. Through Him we have become certain of God, a God who is not a remote ‘first cause’ of the world, because His only-begotten Son has become Man and of Him everyone can say: ‘I live by faith in the Son of God, who loved me and gave himself for me’ (Gal 2:20).

In this sense it is true that anyone who does not know God, even though He may entertain all kinds of hopes, is ultimately without Hope, without the great Hope that sustains the whole of life (cf. Eph 2:12).

Man’s great, true Hope which holds firm in spite of all disappointments can only be God—God who has loved us and who continues to love us ‘to the end,’ until all ‘is accomplished’ (cf. Jn 13:1 and 19:30).

Whoever is moved by Love begins to perceive what ‘Life’ really is. He begins to perceive the meaning of the word of Hope that we encountered in the Baptismal Rite: from Faith I await ‘eternal life’—the true life which, whole and unthreatened, in all its fullness, is simply Life.

Jesus, who said that he had come so that we might have Life and have it in its fullness, in abundance (cf. Jn 10:10), has also explained to us what ‘Life’ means: ‘this is eternal life, that they know you the only true God, and Jesus Christ whom you have sent’ (Jn 17:3).

Life in its true sense is not something we have exclusively in or from ourselves: it is a relationship. And Life in its totality is a relationship with Him who is the source of Life.

If we are in relation with Him who does not die, who is Life itself and Love itself, then we are in life. Then we ‘live’.

 

Pope Benedict XVI, Spe Salvi, 30 November 2007, Adapted and edited from Paragraphs 26 and 27. The complete reformatted text is available to be read as an e-book at https://www.acnireland.org/spe-salvi/

This article can be found in Mirror 0118.