Monthly Archives: February 2012

Reflecting on the Gospel for the First Sunday of Lent

From The Gospel of Mark by Mary Healy, commenting on Mark 1:12-13:

The desert is depicted in Scripture as the realm of evil powers, symbolized by the predatory beasts that lurk there (Lev 16:10; Isa 35:79; Ezek 34:25). Jesus goes there to be tempted (or “put to the test,” NJB) by Satan, that is, to be tested in his resolve to carry out his messianic mission in accord with the Father’s will. He faces the same decision as Adam and Eve in the garden (Gen 3:16) and Israel in the desert (Exod 15:25; 16:4)but unlike them, he rebuffs temptation and stands fast in his determination to please the Father.

© 2008 Mary Healy and Baker Academic. Unauthorized use of this material without express written permission is strictly prohibited.

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Reflecting on the Gospel for the Seventh Sunday in Ordinary Time

From The Gospel of Mark by Mary Healy, reflecting on Mark 2:6-8:

Jesus’ word is what philosophers call a “performative statement,” a statement that brings about what it says. He is not merely telling the man that God has forgiven him; he is effecting that forgiveness. The significance of this stunning claim is not lost on the audience, some of whom are scribes trained in the law. They know well that forgiveness of sins is a prerogative of God alone (see Ps 51; Isa 43:25). Understandably, they are discomfited, and think to themselves, He is blaspheming. By perceiving these unspoken misgivings, Jesus gives the first evidence that his claim is legitimate, for it is God who reads the human heart (1 Sam 16:7; Jer 12:20; Sir 42:18). 

© 2008 Mary Healy and Baker Academic. Unauthorized use of this material without express written permission is strictly prohibited.

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Catholic Commentary on Sacred Scripture on Logos

Attention Logos Bible Software users: The first seven volumes of the CCSS are now on pre-pub sale at Logos! The pre-pub sale is 40% off. Find out more.

 

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Reflecting on the Gospel for the Sixth Sunday in Ordinary Time

From The Gospel of Mark by Mary Healy, reflecting on Mark 1: 40-45:

Although leprosy has been virtually wiped out in developed nations, the loneliness and social stigma attending various physical or interior afflictions–for instance, AIDS or mental illness–is as widespread as ever. Indeed, leprosy is only an outward sign of the inner uncleanness experienced by all fallen human beings. The defilement of sin often causes a deep inner shame, even when a person is not consciously aware of it, that makes a person hesitant to turn to God. But as this man’s boldness in approaching Jesus was richly rewarded, so is the prayer of all those who approach him with confidence in his cleansing power, especially through the sacrament of reconciliation. Jesus is not dismayed, scandalized, or contaminated by any human defilement. He willingly removes it by the power of his own holiness, restoring our communion with others and making us fully qualified to enter into God’s presence.

© 2008 Mary Healy and Baker Academic. Unauthorized use of this material without express written permission is strictly prohibited.

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Reflecting on the Gospel for the Fifth Sunday in Ordinary Time

From The Gospel of Mark by Mary Healy, commenting on Mark 1:31:

Jesus’ healings often involve his physical contact with the patient, a personal and consoling touch. In this case he grasped her hand and helped her up (literally “raised her up,” the same word used for his own resurrection, 16:6). This woman’s recovery from illness is a foreshadowing of the resurrection on the last day (12:24–26). Her immediate reaction is a model of discipleship: she waited on them. The Greek verb, diakoneō, later becomes a standard term for Christian ministry (Acts 6:2), from which we derive the word “deacon.” It is what Jesus himself said he came to do: “not to be served but to serve” (Mark 10:45). The right response to an experience of Jesus’ healing power is to begin to spend oneself in service to him and his disciples, that is, to the Church. Women exemplify this service in a particular way in the Gospels (Mark 15:41; Luke 10:40; John 12:2).

© 2008 Mary Healy and Baker Academic. Unauthorized use of this material without express written permission is strictly prohibited.

 

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