With me, bear the hardships for the sake of the Good News, relying on the power of God who has saved us and called us to be holy – not because of anything we ourselves have done but for his own purpose and by his own grace.
This grace had already been granted to us, in Christ Jesus, before the beginning of time, but it has only been revealed by the Appearing of our saviour Christ Jesus. He abolished death, and he has proclaimed life and immortality through the Good News.
2 Timothy 1:8-10
The Second reading at Mass on Sunday, the 2nd Sunday of Lent, has us hear again Paul urging us to endure, so we might indeed receive and benefit from the salvation won for us by God.
Salvation history has its different stages, marked by different covenants – with Noah, Abraham, Moses and so on. But there is now a new covenant revealed in Jesus Christ which recapitulates all which has gone before and extends them, and indeed also points us back to the original blessing which some see in Creation but is still more securely to be found in the love of the Father for the Son, indeed in the whole dynamic of love which informs the life of the Holy Trinity.
Before the world was God’s hope for us was love and holiness.
Mosaic, Underground basilica (Pius X), Lourdes. (c) 2016, Allen Morris.