Monday of the Thirtieth Week in Ordinary Time
Romans 8:12-17, Psalm 68:2, 4, 6-7, 20-21, & Luke 13:10-17
The Jesus we witness in today’s Gospel narrative is a familiar one. It is Jesus, the healer. From childhood, most of us learned about Jesus casting out demons, healing lepers, and enabling the lame to walk, which is a wonderful aspect of Jesus and allows us to glimpse His divine nature.
Incredibly, our Lord finds himself criticized for having engaged His divine nature to heal someone. A religious leader of the time decided that Jesus violated the rule forbidding “working” on the Sabbath.
Rules are an essential part of any religion or society. However, rules only make sense if one references their purpose. Otherwise, they become obsolete and only exist for their own sake. In that sense, they track the distinction made by Paul in our first reading, “For if you live according to the flesh, you will die, but if by the spirit you put to death the deeds of the body, you will live.”
The religious leader’s error was that he lost sight of the meaning of the edict. The purpose of the rule forbidding Sabbath work was to allow all to glorify God at least one day a week. But understanding it as he did, it became a rule that would present glorifying God as Jesus did by healing the sick woman.
Friends, as humans, we all struggle with rules. We break and bend them, often for selfish reasons. However, the greatest error is entirely losing sight of their purposes. Today we thank Jesus for the reminder.
Question of the Day: Do you believe helping others is something we do every day of our lives?
Prayer: “We will ring out our joy at your saving help and exult in the name of our God.” Psalm 20