Christ speaks, and liberates with authority
Readings: 1st: 1 Cor 2:10-16; Ps: 145; Gos: Lk 4:31-37
This brief reflection was written by Fr. Njoku Canice Chukwuemeka, C.S.Sp. He is a Catholic Priest and a member of the Congregation of the Holy Spirit (Spiritans). He is a missionary in Puerto Rico, the island of enchantment. He is the Chancellor of the Dioceses of Fajardo-Humacao, Puerto Rico; the Parish Priest of Parroquia la Resurrección del Senor, Canovanas and the Major Superior of the Congregation of the Holy Spirit (Spiritans), Circumscription of Puerto Rico and Dominican Republic. For more details and comments contact him at: firstname.lastname@example.org, email@example.com.
Today is the Tuesday of the twenty second week of ordinary time. Today’s gospel is a continuation of yesterday’s.
Without wasting time, Christ has started fulfilling the mission he announced in the Synagogue by healing a possessed man.
However, before this healing, Luke tells us that Christ gained the admiration of the people who listened to him preach and teach. They perceived that he teaches in a different way. So, they were amazed because: “Jesus speaks with authority.”
He was different from the Scribes and the Pharisees who taught or preached by citing authorities. On the contrary, Christ speaks from his personal experience of God, his own life and by the power of the Holy Spirit. He was not acting alone.
Of course, with the same authority, Christ cured the possessed man. This is evident in his command to the demon: “Be quiet! Come out of him!” Immediately, the demon left the man, and he was cured.
This man has suffered much, and has been enslaved by this demon for a long time. However, his encounter with Christ transformed his life.
There is a very important lesson for us in today’s gospel. It is true that many of us may not be possessed by the same demon that alienated and made life miserable for this man that Christ healed today.
However, it not impossible that there are some other forces that have alienated and are making life difficult for us, from which we need liberation. They are not far from us. They walk, and live with us every day.
They may include; bad habits, materialism, addictions of different kinds, social media, a particular sin, and many more. Each person knows what that “demon” in his life is. What is yours?
Some of us have made much efforts to liberate ourselves from them, yet, they will not go away, or leave us alone. So, we have surrendered to them.
However, the good news is that, if we sincerely, let Christ encounter them, he will speak to them with same authority: “Be quiet, come out of him!” Then, we shall be totally freed from them.
Peace be with you.