Monday, January 23, 2017

Reflection: Mark 3:22-30

Monday of the Third Week in Ordinary Time - Mark 3:22-30

Today the scribes who had come from Jerusalem told the people: “Jesus is possessed by a demon.” Then after a moment they added: “He expels demons with the help of the prince of demons.” Jesus then took the initiative and asked the scribes several questions: “How can Satan expel Satan?  Or if a kingdom is torn by civil strife, how will that kingdom last?  If a household is divided, that household will not survive.”   

Jesus then emphatically states: “I give you my word, every sin will be forgiven and as well as all the blasphemies human beings utter, except the blasphemies uttered against the Holy Spirit;  these will never be forgiven.  The person who does this will carry the guilt of this sin into eternity.”  All of Jesus words were spoken to discount the words the scribes had spoken: “He is out of his mind!”

Clearly, Jesus was “fed up” with the scribes!  Daily they criticized him, no matter what he did or said.  In their eyes, Jesus could do nothing right!  Thus, the tirade Jesus delivered to the scribes was deserved.  However, Jesus’ criticism of the scribes, simply “fueled” the scribes’ anger and fear of Jesus. Thus, the scribes began to spread the rumor that Jesus was “possessed by an unclean spirit.”

Take a moment and ask yourself: Do I ever accuse someone unfairly?  Or do I “put down” other people simply because I don’t like them or approve of how they live their lives?  I suspect that every human being does this at times.  Yet we do not have the right to criticize others.  All of us have many “growing edges,” yet we do not like it when others criticize us.  Today, be mindful of your thoughts and your words.  If your thoughts are negative, think positive thoughts of the person you are judging – as best you can. This will be a great gift to the person, yourself and the world!

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