I Have Set My Face Like Flint
These words ‘I have set my face like flint’ show how determined Isaiah was to carry out his God-given mission.
God has given him a message and he must deliver it, even at the cost of personal suffering. Isaiah is confident that God will eventually prove him right.
In exactly the same way, Jesus’ passion was the outcome of his obedient delivery of the message of the kingdom despite the people’s rejection; His constant reliance was that God would prove him right. At different times in the gospel the evangelists tell Jesus set his face toward Jerusalem. These words tell us of Jesus’ determination to carry out his God-given mission.
Our second reading leaves out the introduction of Paul’s admonition to all of us, ‘Have that mind in you which was in Christ Jesus’. We hear that Christ emptied himself of his divinity and took to himself our humanity and in and through our humanity he reconciled us to God by suffering death on a cross, the most painful and shameful form of execution.
Today’s feast challenges each of us to set our face like flint as we struggle with God’s grace to live faithfully the life that is ours through the Passion and Death of the crucified Christ.