Tuesday, January 30, 2018

Tuesday of the Fourth Week in Ordinary Time

(II Samuel 18:9-10.14b.24-25a.30-19:3; Mark 5:21-43)

The two Scripture readings today may be contrasted in an interesting way.  In the first reading David suffers three personal affronts.  First, his son Absalom has betrayed him (this was more clearly seen yesterday).  Then Absalom’s death devastates the king despite the betrayal.  Finally, the manner in which Absalom dies is humiliating.  The youth, who was so proud of his coiffure, was found hanging from a tree limb in which his hair was entangled.

Quite differently, Jesus experiences success at every turn.  He heals the poor woman of her hemorrhages without saying a word.  Then he raises Jairus’ daughter to new life by telling her to “arise.”  Finally, he silences the crowd who thought him mad for trying to revive a dead child.

Faith is at heart of both readings.  In the first, Absalom’s unbelief in God makes him desirous of his father’s kingdom and brings about his downfall.  In the gospel both the hemorrhaging woman and Jairus put their faith in God’s Son, Jesus, and experience great blessing.  We should not think that believing in God shields us from all heartache.  But it does provide us hope.  God keeps His promise of eternal life to those who trust him.