Deuteronomy 4:32-34, 39-40; Romans 8:14-17; Matthew 28:16-20
Today’s Gospel presents Jesus in the last verses of Matthew’s account of the life, death and resurrection of the Lord. Like Moses, Jesus gave His first instruction on a mountain of Beatitudes and here at the end Jesus is giving an instruction about their futures. Jesus announces that all power has been entrusted to Him and He is sharing that with His disciples. They are to use this power to make new disciples and including them into the circle of power through baptism. Jesus commits Himself to His being with them all and for ever. They are to announce that all they do will be in the name of the Father and Son and Holy Spirit.
This power is not for domination, control, manipulation nor confinement. It is the power which Jesus used through out His public life. It was and is the power and authority of relationship and responsibility. The commandments of Moses were to keep the Israelites separated and uncontaminated by associations with other traditions, cults and nations. Jesus gives this new way of extending the relationships within the Trinity to the “Trinification” of the world. The power of the intensity of love within the Trinity is to now be trans-national; all nations are to be touched.
The disciples are given the power to relate with the responsibility of caring. Jesus has not laid down the laws in an “or else” spirit. Jesus has announced in His days, that all of creation is of the love of God. So again there is a “Trinity of Time” in which creation has a past, has been clarified as to its identity by the life, death and Resurrection of Jesus and it has a destiny to become the kingdom of powerful relations. The disciples are the beginning actors in baptizing the world from its false perceptions and identities. They are to extend the creative Spirit of love in reidentifying all of creation, including us, as belonging to that kingdom. We, as with the Israelites, are to be saved from and saved for the power of love. The power of Jesus is the interior of the Trinity and all of creation is enfolded into such a love.
After all that, I have tried not to cop-out by admitting the truth more simply that the Trinity is a mystery and let’s leave it so. Love is the power and we are given the responsibility of receiving it and being caring for the coming of the kingdom within our own little lives. It is a blessing of this holy Trinity that we appear to be more than we appear to be to ourselves. This is the power of the Resurrection.
“Blessed be God the Father and His only-begotten Son and the Holy Spirit: for He has shown that He loves us.” Entrance Antiphon for this liturgy
By Larry Gillick