Daily Reflection on the Gospel of Sunday, June 9, 2024

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Today, the Gospel invites us to ponder on two irreconcilable enemies: Jesus and the evil spirit. The Gospel affirms: «The teachers of the Law who had come from Jerusalem said, ‘He is possessed by Beelzebub…’» (Mk 3:22). This verse helps us to understand the concerns of the family members of Jesus who came to take him back home. In fact, as we can notice it, Jesus is not accused because he broke the Law, or the Jewish customs, or the Sabbath. It is not a blasphemy either. He is accused of being possessed by the chief of demons. And we may realize that this is one of the first accusations directed to Jesus about something different from breaking a Jewish Law. 

But the interesting fact is the answer Jesus gave them: «How can Satan drive out Satan? If a nation is divided by civil war, that nation cannot stand (...). No one can break into the house of the Strong one in order to plunder his goods, unless he first ties up the Strong one...» (Mk 3:23-24.27). This shows that Jesus completely repudiates the idea that he is working for Satan. For this reason, he begins to speak in parable about the house of the strong man. In a way or another, this parable seems to relate directly to the mission of Jesus. And this mission reveals the Kingdom of God by binding the strong man, Satan, through the work done by Jesus. 

In fact, the casting out of evil spirits by Jesus tells us that He is stronger than Satan. Pope Francis in a general audience affirmed: «It is enough to open newspaper and we see that around us there is the presence of evil, the Devil is at work. But I would like to say in a loud voice ‘God is stronger’. Do you believe this, that God is stronger?».

Fr. Salomon Badatana