Readings for Friday February 11, 2011
First Reading: Genesis 3:1-8
Responsorial Psalm: Psalm 32
Gospel: Mark 7:31-37
Jesus left the district of Tyre and went by way of Sidon to the Sea of Galilee, into the district of the Decapolis. And people brought to him a deaf man who had a speech impediment and begged him to lay his hand on him. He took him off by himself away from the crowd. He put his finger into the man’s ears and, spitting, touched his tongue; then he looked up to heaven and groaned, and said to him, “Ephphatha!” (that is, “Be opened!”) And immediately the man’s ears were opened, his speech impediment was removed, and he spoke plainly. He ordered them not to tell anyone. But the more he ordered them not to, the more they proclaimed it. They were exceedingly astonished and they said, “He has done all things well. He makes the deaf hear and the mute speak.” (Mk 7:31-37)
In today's genesis account of the fall of mankind, we see how Adam did not uphold his job of keeping and protecting the garden (the real garden, Eve). Eve fell to the temptation of the serpent, and therefore Adam just went right along with what was going on. Many people are very quick to judge our first ancestors, but we must ask ourselves, would we have acted any different? I know myself well enough to say that I am not that good. God knew that on our own, we cannot become what we were created to be, so in His wisdom, He sent us some help ... Himself.
Today's gospel tells of Jesus curing a deaf and mute individual. The people were so amazed at His power they said; "He has done all things well. He makes the deaf hear and the mute speak." This saying by the people was almost correct, Jesus did not just come and do things well, He did them perfectly. Jesus is God in the flesh and He is perfect. Jesus came to do what the first man did not do, and that is sacrifice Himself for those He loves. He came with a perfect obedience to the Father's will. Saint Paul speaks of this in His letter to the Hebrews; "For by one offering he has made perfect forever those who are being consecrated." (Heb 10:14)
Christ came to heal and help us, He comes to lead us to a higher purpose. With Him, we can rise above any temptation, but without Him we will fall. May we always rely on and trust in our Lord, and may our hope always be in Him.
Father above we thank you for the gift of this day. Lord, we thank you and give you praise for all the blessings in our life. Lord, give us the strength and courage to overcome any temptation that the evil one and the world may throw at us. Let us be full of love and zeal for you and for your law. Lord, we pray for all those who are struggling with sin in their life, may they be brought out of the slavery that sin offers. We ask this all through Christ our Lord. Amen.