First Sunday in Lent - Year B
THE SIGN OF THE COVENANT
The story of the great Flood ends with God making the first Covenant or solemn commitment with humanity through Noah. Human beings are to refrain from killing and from eating meat with blood in it. God's side of the deal is that there will never again be a world-wide deluge. God offers a sign of this pledge in the form of a rainbow. Ancient peoples worshipped such natural phenomena as examples of divine intervention. Since it usually appears after storms are moving on, it is a natural indication of ensuing calm.
THE SOULS IN PRISON
The Apostles' Creed is one of the oldest statements of Christian faith. Part of it states that Jesus "suffered under Pontius Pilate, was crucified, died, and was buried; he descended to hell." Though the Catholic Church has recently changed this to "...he descended to the dead," it still offers a strange question. Why did Jesus go "to hell" or to the dead"?
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