Tuesday of the 22nd Week of the Year

Luke 4:31-37

The Cure of a Demoniac

How to describe a person with authority? A person has authority because he is the author and the maker. He is the one who speaks with more credibility and reliability. But God is the supreme authority since He is the creator and the author of all creatures. And God also governs us through others. As St. Paul says, “All authority comes from God.” Hence we must respect and obey all legitimate authority. If not, we shall end up in chaos, not knowing what to follow.

As it was taught and quoted by somebody that by divine institution, the authority in the Church resides in the hierarchy. It does not come from the people but from God. On the other hand, civil authority can come in various ways but God too. Christians should obey the civil authority as representing God in the temporal sphere. There is no conflict in the heart of the Christian between his/her religious loyalty and his/her loyalty to his country. They both allude to God in different spheres of life.

Jesus in today’s gospel spoke with authority because He spoke the word of God as no one had spoken it before.  When the Rabbis taught they supported their statements with quotes from other authorities.  The prophets spoke with delegated authority like: “Thus says the Lord.”  When Jesus spoke he needed no authorities to back up his statements.  He was authority incarnate, the Word of God made flesh.  When he spoke, God spoke. How do we respond to the word of God?  Do we listen it with selective submission or with the full assent of faith and obedience?

Jesus too commanded the evil spirits with authority and power to come out. Jesus took the existence of evil very seriously. With calm authority he expelled the evil spirits from the man in the synagogue. What has this to do with us? One priest said that evil is a reality. We encounter evil in ourselves when tempted, when we give in to temptations, when we do what we actually do not intend to do, when we ignore the voice of our conscience. We encounter evil in the persons around us, in our society, in the world. Often we get the impression that our society is permeated by evil. What do we do? St. Paul leads us to the basic attitude we must have to encounter evil; to follow the urgings of the Holy Spirit which bars evil from entering and does not allow spreading in one’s life.

At the end let us reflect on what the Word of God can do for us as it is said by a religious sister and I quote: “It Judges or we cannot just bear it and forget it (John 12:48); It purifies or exposes evil, points out the good (John 15:3; Tim 4:5); It obligates or if you bear it, you must pass it on (Acts 4:4); It renews or gives you a new life (1Pt 1:23).

Today’s Readings:  Year I,   Year II

OPTION  01,   02,   03,

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