He Who Loves the Innocent Icon, Unknown
The mystery of the innocents is that they are the victims. The divine eagle gathered them as booty to himself. The blow aimed by the tyrant at our Lord fell on them instead. They serve as a kind of guard of honor to the divine Child – and the militant dialogue between God and anti-God in which they are caught up earns them heaven.
But we have lost our awareness of that ceaseless duel. We so little realize that we have a share in the struggle that we ignore it completely. Yet no one can escape responsibility, and at any moment God, exercising sovereign power, may draw us into the thick of it.
So far as an adult is concerned this can only lead to salvation if the victim voluntarily accepts the combat and enters it on God’s side. But in the case of the innocents, the manger sealed their fate and was sacrifice enough. That is their mystery.
(from the Prison Meditations of Alfred Delp)