From the prophet Isaiah today comes a prophecy about Jesus Christ. In this prophecy we are told that the savior of Israel will be the savior of the world. We are told that what will first seem like failure will turn out to be complete success. We are told that the savior will find his strength in God and will be glorified in his sight. We are also told that the savior was formed as God’s servant in his mother’s womb.
As we near the Passion of our Lord Jesus Christ, when he was scourged and killed upon a cross, we, as a culture, should remember that this same Jesus was once a child, a fetus, an embryo, a zygote. In our culture no one is forced to undergo suffering such as the unborn undergo. We do not kill criminals so lightly as we kill small children, nor do we use such cruel methods.
If it is not enough for us to be opposed to killing small children because, as fellow humans, we were once just like them, let us remember also that Jesus too was once just like them. God became a man. In so doing he granted dignity to all humans which can never be taken away. The work of a carpenter will always be particularly dignified because Jesus did that work. The homeless deserve our particular interest and care, since our Lord was homeless. We cannot ignore the poor, since our Savior chose to be poor. The Holy Land is holy because God lived there, walking the streets of Jerusalem and the roads of Galilee.
Just so, as we are devoted to Jesus in every stage of his life, we should not ignore the first nine months. We have devotions in the Church to Jesus on the Cross, to Jesus as a man, to the child Jesus, to the infant Jesus. We should not ignore devotion to the unborn Jesus, to Jesus, formed as God’s servant in the womb. Where better could we direct our prayers against the slaughter of millions of unborn children, formed just as Jesus was and killed just as Jesus was? Who could be more sympathetic to their suffering?
Jesus, formed as God’s servant in the womb, you who are life itself, you who were greeted by John the Baptist before either of you were born, protect all the unborn from the evil intentions of those who would harm them. Grant an end to the massacre which is happening even now. We ask this in your name. Amen.