December 7, 2022 –
To whom can you liken me as an equal?
Today’s First Reading from the fortieth chapter of Isaiah proclaims the unique majesty of the Lord God. This proclamation highlights the radical distinction between the Creator God and each of His creatures. In Isaiah we hear God ask a rhetorical question. “To whom can you liken me as an equal? says the Holy One.”
This question evokes the rhetorical question posed by one of God’s greatest creatures: Saint Michael the Archangel. The name “Michael” is literally a question: “Who is like God?” It’s not a coincidence that St. Michael is the angel who thrusts down into Hell Satan and all the evil spirits [see Revelation 12:7-9]. After all, Satan and the other fallen angels were thrown down from Heaven for believing that they were like God in His majesty and power.
By contrast, God the Son, who is equal to God—indeed, who is God—in every way, did not deem equality with God something to be clung to [see Philippians 2:6]. The humility of Jesus’ Incarnation at the Annunciation is complemented by the humility of the surroundings at Bethlehem. Yet these forms of humility are but preparations for the humility of Calvary, where the Creator God dies in order to offer His creatures the chance of eternal life.