The Gospel reading for this Second Sunday of Advent is Matthew 3:1-12. It is the story of John the Baptist preaching and baptizing at the River Jordan. His key message was “Repent for the kingdom of heaven is at hand.”
His other major message was directed at the religious leaders present. He didn’t tell them to memorize scripture. Instead, he directed that they “bear fruit in keeping with repentance.”
How we treat those around us is all that matters. Treating others with love and living a compassionate and caring lifestyle that daily reflects the love of Jesus demonstrates the fruit of repentance. That is what Jesus really cares about.