Thursday, 1 December 2016

The Heart Of The Gospel. Part 13.

By Francis Patrick Donnelly

Who can estimate the richness of the Heart of Christ? It is the incarnation of the love of God. "The love of God was made Heart, and throbbed amongst us," we may say, following the words and spirit of St. John. The Heart of Christ is the symbol, the representation of the love of Christ, and so of the love of God. "God so loved the world as to give His only begotten Son." The ripest fruit of divine love, as we may say, interpreting the words, was the Incarnation. The Heart of Christ was created to put before us in a language we could understand the love of God. God so loved that He gave. What, then, are the treasures of Christ's Heart? They are the richness of Christ's love as God, and the richness of Christ's love as man. The beating of His Heart voiced both loves.

Consider, then, what was the precious coinage of Christ's lips. We may judge from their power. His words were omnipotent. They spoke to blind eyes, and they saw; to deaf ears, and they heard; to dumb tongues, and they spoke. "Peace, be still," He said to the waves, and they fell to sleep. "Be thou clean," He said to the leper, and the flesh at once grew wholesome, and firm, and ruddy with the glow of health. His words were stronger still, "more piercing than any two-edged sword; and reaching into the divisions of the soul and spirit; and discerners of the thoughts and intents of the heart." Sinful and sorrowful heard His words, and sin and sadness were sloughed off the soul like the scales of leprosy from the body.

Truly, a two-edged sword, edged with divine and human love! Every action of Christ was one because it was the action of one person, but it was twofold in being accompanied by the action of His human and divine nature. The white-hot sword, so the old theologians put it, will cut and will burn, and who will separate the smallest section of the metal which cuts from another section which burns? Every atom burns; every atom cuts. So in the fire of Christ's word blended the flame of two loves. In the beating of His heart the ear can detect the harmony of two sounds, the melody of the greatest love that ever throbbed in man, and its harmonic melody of infinitely higher octaves, the love of God. Every word, then, of Christ was far from idleness. It was possessed of a divine and an infinite energy. It was the coinage of the gold of Christ's Heart.

To-day we hear the same words; we witness and experience their might. The words of Christ are now on the lips of Christ's priests. "I absolve you," say the priests, imparting by those words of Christ the precious treasure of grace to the souls of men. "This is My body," says the same priest, speaking in the person of Christ. Immediately, by the transmuting power of the words of Christ, the crushed and baked wheat, poor, cheap substance that it is, is transformed into substance infinitely surpassing earth's rarest ores. Thus do all the Sacraments, every moment of every day, reveal everywhere to mankind by the enriching words of Christ the supreme richness of the Heart of Christ.