Homilette for Thursday, January 22, 2009

Thursday of the Second Week in Ordinary Time

(Hebrews 7:25-8:6; Mark 3:7-12)

“Build a better mousetrap,” goes a familiar adage in economics, “and the world will beat a path to your door.” In the gospel today the world seems to beat a path to Jesus’ door. He has provided people something more helpful than an effective mousetrap. He cures them of every disease. Still the people do not recognize Jesus as the Son of God. For them he is a human albeit wondrous healer.

The unclean spirits with their supernatural powers, however, do recognize Jesus for who he is. Either out of reverence or mock piety, they bow down before Jesus and proclaim his divine heritage. Jesus quiets them probably because the people about him are not yet able to understand his divine mission.

Fortunately we can, at least to some extent. Jesus came to redeem the world from sin by his ultimate sacrifice of self. For this he deserves our praise – the highest form of which, of course, is emulation. No, we probably do not have to give our lives, but all of us are called to service. Jesus’ healing all the people in the gospel today indicates that he has prepared us for this difficult task.