Today the Universe Worships: A Christmas Homily by Deacon Alan Doty

Today, we rejoice! Today, the universe rejoices because its creator has come. Today we worship! Today, the universe worships because today it learns the true meaning of worship.

The universe rejoices for God reveals himself not as an anonymous force or spirit, hidden and inaccessible. God the Son through which all things were created has a name, a face, a body.

We rejoice, all the ends of the earth rejoice; all the ends of the universe rejoice. The very heavens declare the glory of God; the skies proclaim the work of his hands. (Ps 19)

Our God enters the universe he created and lives in the nature of a creature, the creature Jesus Christ.  We now see that our God is not far away, hidden in a dark place that we must be guided to find. There is no special knowledge, no secret paths, no mysterious plane of existence that we must achieve. 

Today, Jesus Christ comes in the nature of God and the nature of a human and is seen by all creation. We humans, ordinary humans, saw him directly with their eyes and heard him with their ears. He came so that not only humanity, but the ends of the earth and the ends of the sky have seen his glory. Rocks and fields, sheep and cattle, stars and angels rejoice, each according to their nature, in the presence of their creator. 

Because of Christmas day, we need not look to the movements of the planets and celestial bodies to try to find our God. We need not look to rocks or even spirits to guide us. We don’t depend on the universe or anything within it for wisdom. All these things are created, all the handiwork of God. We look for wisdom not from the created but from the one who creates, who created the universe from a single Word. 

Today, we worship! Today the universe worships. The universe worships for now it knows the meaning of worship. Today the universe and everything within it acknowledges their creator, and worships. The immensity of space, the smallest ear of grain, the depths of the earth and even the depths of hell recognize their creator who comes, not as a force or a spirit nor even as a ruler but as a helpless babe, a whisper, a tiny breeze. The universe worships the infant, the infant who is the Word that was in the beginning with God.  All things came to be through him, and without him nothing came to be. (Jn 1).

Because of Christmas day, we no longer worship what we do not know. Before Christmas day, God revealed himself only partially. Now, in Jesus, we have the fullness of God’s revelation of himself. God has revealed himself in time and for all time and the universe worships at God’s glory. All other ways of worship fall vain and empty; worship of any of God’s creatures in place of, or even alongside, the God who creates is inconceivable. Beside God, nothing is co-eternal. Aside from God, there is simply nothing else.

And so, the universe worships and rejoices and we, along with all created things, worship and rejoice. We rejoice with the organ and melodious song, with trumpets and the sound of the horn. We worship by thanking God for creation and for revealing himself to us on Christmas day. According to our human nature. we worship by offering a sacrifice. We worship in trusting the promise of he who came among us as a babe that he also comes amongst us in the Eucharist. We worship by welcoming Jesus into our homes and our deepest being. We worship Jesus, joyfully proclaiming to the ends of the earth that all things came to be through him, the light of the human race; the light that shines in the darkness.

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