‘Here is a teaching that is new and with authority behind it: he gives orders even to unclean spirits and they obey him.’ – Mk 1:27
Made for MoreDo you know that you are made for more than just eating, paying bills and then dying? Sounds funny but most of us live as if this life is all there is and death puts an end to everything. Jesus, in today’s Gospel, opens our eyes to something many of us have written off as fairy tales. He cures a man possessed by demons. Jesus is not merely curing the sick for entertainment: he is decisively beating back the forces of evil and introducing the kingdom of God. The forces of evil are constantly scheming on how to get the better of us. If you identify with Christ, they know you by name. It is the belief in ancient times that knowing a person’s name provides power over them. The unclean spirit calls Jesus by name. But no earthly power can prevail over Christ. No evil power will prevail over those who place themselves under the protective mantle of God’s grace through Christ.
God’s SpokesmanChrist is the fulfilment of the prophecy of Moses in the first reading (Deut 18:15-20). He is the one who speaks in God’s name and makes known to God’s people His command. The greatest of the commandments is to love God and to love your neighbour. Most of us still struggle with the real meaning of love. Love is contrary to selfishness. Love breeds trust and selfishness breeds fear. When we act out of love, we edify ourselves and others as well. When our actions are motivated by selfishness, we become instruments of the evil one to bring others down. By curing the possessed man, Jesus shows he has power reserved to God alone; the power to set us free from everything opposed to God.
One Cure for AllJesus is God the Son and the second person of the Trinity. He has power to cure all of the world’s maladies: sickness, hunger, division, hatred, distrust, envy, blood lust, power-drunkenness, faithlessness, infidelity, hypocrisy, malice, lack of patriotism, to mention a few. At the heart of all these is the rejection of God’s love and presence in our lives. Where God is absent, evil reigns. Demonic possession takes place in degrees and often the unsuspecting person thinks they are acting with their senses. What is your reaction when you hear the “one corner” song? Occasional litmus tests like this is a good way to know if you have given the evil one a home in your heart.
Share the MissionJesus wants to heal every aspect of our lives. He wants to heal broken hearts and broken homes, marriages, families, communities, nations and the whole world. Even more interesting is that Jesus Christ wants to share his power and authority with you. He is not satisfied with doing things for you. He wants to do great things through you. You are in his presence today to ask for his power to do great things with Him. Saint Paul teaches that whether you are married or single, our vocation is to serve God (1Cor 7:32-35). This should be your primary preoccupation. If you are married, worship God by serving your family diligently. If you are unmarried, love God with your chastity. If you place yourself in God’s hand, you will do great things and enjoy peace and happiness that the world does not know. If today you listen to his voice, harden not your heart” (Ps 95).
PrayerLord, I give you my heart and soul. There is no happiness outside You. Help me to love you and everyone I meet each day in sincerity of heart.
Today’s ReadingsDeut 18:15-20; Ps 95:1-2,6-9; 1Cor 7:32-35; Mk 1:21-28