Thursday of the Sixteenth week in Ordinary Time
...... but did not see it"
Saint Bernard (1091-1153), Cistercian monk and doctor of the Church
Sermons on the Song of Songs, no.2.III.4f (trans. ©Classics of Western Spirituality)
"Many prophets and righteous people longed to see what you see but did not see it"
The holy men who lived before the coming of the Savior understood that God had in mind “a plan to bring peace to the race of mortal men” (Jer 29,11). For the Word “would do nothing on earth which he did not reveal to his servants the prophets” (Am 3,7). But this Word was hidden from many…; but those who foreknew the redemption of Israel also proclaimed that Christ would come in the flesh and that with him would come peace… "There will be peace when he comes to our earth" (cf. Mi 5,5).
In those days, while the prophets foretold peace the faith of the people continually wavered because there was no one to redeem or save them, for the Author of peace delayed his coming. So men complained at the delay, because the Prince of Peace (Is 9,5), who had been so often proclaimed, had not yet come, as had been promised by the holy men who were his prophets from of old (Lk 1,70)… It was as if one of the people were to answer the messengers of peace: "How much longer are you going to keep us waiting?" (Jn 10,24). You foretell a peace which does not come. You promise good things and there is still confusion (Jer 14,19). See, many times and in many ways) angels announced to the patriarchs and our fathers proclaimed to us, saying: "Peace. And there is no peace" (Jer 6,14)... Let God confirm that his messengers spoke the truth, if they were his messengers, and let him follow them in person…
Here are sweet promises full of consolation : « Behold the Lord will appear; and he will not lie. If he seems slow, wait for him, for he will come and that soon” (Hab 2,3). And again: “The time of his coming is near and his days will not be prolonged” (Is 14,1), and, from the person of him who was promised: “Behold,” he says, “I am running toward you like a river of peace and like a stream in flood with the glory of the nations” (Is 66,12 Vg).