Tuesday, February 17, 2009

MNBS, 7th Sunday of Ordinary Time, Yr B

Hello folks, it is a Tuesday night study this week. Team Snuffin was a little fussy last night.

Fr. Kambitsch's homily on Sunday primarily examined Jesus' leper healing to a desire to unify the Jewish community. The first reading from last week described how lepers were outcast from the community. He extended the unification theme to Abraham Lincoln trying to heal the USA of a leprosy (i.e. slavery) and preserve unity. I took issue with his understanding of history, but it was an interesting tangent, as the last week was the 200th anniversary of Lincoln's birth. Note for reference, the Southern states did not secede because of the Emanicpation Proclamation. The EP was signed in 1863; the Civil War started in 1861. End of tangent.

This week's Gospel: (Mark 2:1-12)
When Jesus returned to Capernaum after some days,
it became known that he was at home.
Many gathered together so that there was no longer room for them,
not even around the door,
and he preached the word to them.
They came bringing to him a paralytic carried by four men.
Unable to get near Jesus because of the crowd,
they opened up the roof above him.
After they had broken through,
they let down the mat on which the paralytic was lying.
When Jesus saw their faith, he said to the paralytic,
"Child, your sins are forgiven."
Now some of the scribes were sitting there asking themselves,
"Why does this man speak that way? He is blaspheming.
Who but God alone can forgive sins?"
Jesus immediately knew in his mind
what they were thinking to themselves,
so he said, "Why are you thinking such things in your hearts?
Which is easier, to say to the paralytic,
'Your sins are forgiven,'
or to say, 'Rise, pick up your mat and walk?'
But that you may know
that the Son of Man has authority to forgive sins on earth"
—he said to the paralytic,
"I say to you, rise, pick up your mat, and go home."
He rose, picked up his mat at once,
and went away in the sight of everyone.
They were all astounded
and glorified God, saying, "We have never seen anything like this."

Jesus is comfy at home; he may be having a cup of tea, and the people come. Think Bilbo Baggins in Lord of the Rings. He preaches, someone amazes him with their faith in him, and he heals. At the time, some illnesses were thought to be the result of personal sin. He heals the paralytic interiorly by forgiving him of his sins. Instead of trying to hush up the recently healed, he reveals himself to the scribes, the authorities. Jesus is not just some internant preacher, not just some kind of physician. He is someone who behaves with divine authority, and this is manifested physically in healing.

To me, it seems that Jesus is done with trying to deny who he is. We believe that Jesus has two natures, He is both divine and human. I can imagine that this is his exposure of his divine nature in full. He has embraced his vocation; He has arrived.

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