One of my favorite scenes from the film The Passion of the Christ is that of Jesus speaking to his mother when she runs to his side after he has fallen while carrying the cross. The film puts the words of Revelation 21:5 (and Isaiah 43) into his mouth as he gently touches her face and rises again to his feet: “See, mother, I make all things new.” The scene movingly conveys the inherent power in his work of salvation through the Cross. All things made new through God’s own sacrificial gift of himself!
In today’s first reading God proclaims, “Lo, I am about to create a new heavens and a new earth.” Earlier in Isaiah, God says: “See, I am doing a new thing! … do you not perceive it?” (Isaiah 43) The Gospel today echoes this in the miracle that Jesus performs. It would have been easy for the royal official to dismiss it as a coincidence, especially after Jesus’ exasperation: “Unless you see signs and wonders you will not believe.” And yet, in faith, the official perceives the “new thing” that Jesus has done in his midst. This is the work of salvation: a new thing that we rarely perceive. And yet to those “with eyes to see” it reveals itself in the work of the Cross. What is the new thing that Christ is working in our midst that you and I are not perceiving?