John 3:13 – September 14, 2019

No one has gone up to heaven except the one who has come down from heaven, the Son of Man. John 3:13 NABRE

Jesus is speaking to Nicodemus who is a leading Jewish Pharisee. He comes from a prominent family and is referred to as a ruler of the Jews. The two are having a dialogue which is unusual for a Pharisee and Jesus. Nicodemus is genuinely curious about Jesus and His origins. Jesus explains some things to Nicodemus that he does not understand. Jesus wonders out loud as a leader of the Jews if he does not believe in earthly things how will Nicodemus understand heavenly things? It was the role of the priest and leaders to prepare the people for the Messiah, but without belief how could they teach or lead? Jesus explains that there is only one who has come down from heaven, sent by the Father to teach about the Father, love and salvation. Jesus is the one sent and He refers to Himself as the Son of Man, the human one. It is common for the leaders to not know Jesus and in fact challenge Him. But the anawim, the poor recognize Jesus and seek His help and blessing. In fact there are always great crowds following Jesus made up of the needy and poor. While the temple leadership remain aloof about Jesus, except when they wish to undermine His authority with the people.

Jesus once spoke to His disciples about the poor being with us always. He spoke about the poor in spirit inheriting the earth. But never once did He say the leaders will accomplish very much. It may be the nature of power, once we have power we feel the need to protect it. This makes it difficult for leaders to be influenced by those who have little and may not speak with authority. But Jesus is always near the disabled, the sinner, those who have little to nothing, those we call the anawim. We too should find God in the anawim. A good leader will learn humility, meet and learn from the anawim, and discover the Son of Man.

Do you spend time with the poor? Are you able to learn from those who seemingly have nothing to teach?

A good leader will learn humility, meet and learn from the anawim, and discover the Son of Man. Share on X

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