Tuesday, January 15, 2019

Tuesday of the First Week in Ordinary Time

(Hebrews 2:5-12; Mark 1:21-28)

Last month a leading American magazine featured a story on exorcism.  It interviewed a person who believes herself to be possessed, exorcists, and scientists.  After relating difficult to explain phenomena, the article left open the possibility of demonic possession.  Still possession seems more a part of a first century mentality than a twenty-first.  Today’s gospel relates the first of many incidents in which Jesus casts out a demon.

The passage testifies to Jesus’ authority.  The people are amazed that when he speaks, the spirit obeys. He does not hesitate to address the demon much less does he show it deference.  Like a four star general with a division of soldiers behind him, his word calls the devil to attention.

Jesus will help us as he helps the demoniac.  We are not likely possessed by anything more than bad habits or errant thinking.  Nevertheless, opening ourselves to his words will free us from these faults.  We will not only live more happily but also look forward to eternal life as our destiny.