2nd Week in Ordinary Time
Reading: 1 S 17:32-33, 37, 40-51
Gospel: Mk 3:1-6
Jesus entered the synagogue. A man who had a paralyzed hand was there
and some people watched Jesus: Would he heal the man on the sabbath? If
he did they could accuse him.
Jesus said to the man with the paralyzed hand, "Stand here in the
center." Then he asked them, "What does the Law allow us to
do on the sabbath? To do good or to do harm? To save life or to kill?"
But they were silent.
Then Jesus looked around at them with anger and deep sadness because they
had closed their minds. And he said to the man, "Stretch out your
hand." He stretched it out and his hand was healed. But as soon as
the Pharisees left, they met with Herod's supporters, looking for a way
to destroy Jesus.
Jesus was condemned to death while bringing life to others. Jesus was
"too much" for the religious authorities of his time; for them
the Temple, the synagogue, the Sabbath and even the literal observance
of so many commands were more important that justice, human solidarity
and compassion for the people. For Jesus, however, any law that was not
in favor of human life could not be considered divine law. Jesus, knowing
that there was capital punishment for those who transgress the Sabbath,
risked his life while helping the man with the withered hand. We, as followers
of Jesus, are to place the well being of each human person as a top priority,
even if we risk criticism or persecution from those who believe that principles,
national security, dogmas and market laws are first.