St. Anthony, Abbot
I Samuel 8:4-7,10-22 + Mark 2:1-12
January 17, 2020
Many gathered together so that there was no longer room for them….
In today’s Gospel passage Jesus has many followers. “Many gathered together so that there was no longer room for them”. This might seem to make Jesus a popular person, successful in ministry. But within today’s Gospel passage there is a confusion of aims. The aim of the friends of the paralytic was his physical healing. Jesus does not dismiss their effort, but he sub-ordinates it to a higher aim: the forgiveness of sins.
Jesus could have spent His three years of public ministry only working physical cures and raising people from the dead. Had he stuck to these aims alone, He would have remained popular. There’s no telling how successful He might have become in the eyes of the world!
But it was not for fifteen minutes of fame that Jesus came into our world of sin and death. It was to die that He dwelt among us. Give thanks that Jesus shows us how to put our mission above popularity, and how to put the aim of death before that of earthly life.