Wednesday, June 1, 2016

Reflection: Mark 12:18-27

Wednesday of the 9th Week of Ordinary Time – Mark 12:18-27

Today the Sadducees come to Jesus and question him. They begin by quoting Moses, who wrote, “If a man’s brother dies and leaves a wife but no children, the brother must marry the widow who then is to bear his children and raise up descendants for his brother.” Then the Sadducees give Jesus a specific scenario to which they wanted him to respond.

This is the scenario they proposed: There was a family that had seven brothers. The oldest brother married and after a few months of their marriage, he died. Now, the custom at that time was that if a brother dies and leaves a wife but no children, the second oldest brother was to marry his brother’s widow. This was the custom because the Sadducees only believed in what they could see. They could not conceive of heaven, nor did they believe in an afterlife. They simply were trying to trap Jesus.

However, Jesus does not fall into the Sadducees’ trap. He realizes that they are testing him. Ask yourself: do you ever try to trap Jesus by asking him “a trick question?” At times, do you ask Jesus for a “sign” so that you will know that Jesus is at work in your life?  I suspect that all of us do this at times.

The question is: Do we trust Jesus? Do we truly believe that He only desires the best for us? Do we trust that He always is always with us, regardless of how difficult life is at times, or do we only believe that Jesus is present to us when something good or wonderful happens? Do we need a sign of his presence or do we trust (most days) that Jesus is with us always and He will grace us with all we need?

The next time you are tempted to test Jesus, stop for a moment and remember how many times and ways that Jesus has been with you in the past.  If we remember that Jesus is trustworthy, this will help us to trust that He is with us now. Jesus will not let us down! May we wholeheartedly believe and trust this reality!

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