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Blasphemy of the scribes

Gospel Reading: Mk 3:20-35

Jesus came home with his disciples. Again the crowd gathered, making it impossible for them even to eat. When his relatives heard of this they set out to seize him, for they said, “He is out of his mind.” The scribes who had come from Jerusalem said, “He is possessed by Beelzebul,” and “By the prince of demons he drives our demons.”

Summoning them, he began to speak to them in parables, “How can Satan drive out Satan? If a kingdom is divided against itself, that kingdom cannot stand. And if a house is divided against itself, that house will not be able to stand. And if Satan has risen up against himself and is divided, he cannot stand; that is the end of him. But no one can enter a strong man’s house to plunder his property unless he first ties up the strong man. Then he can plunder the house. Amen, I say to you, all sins and all blasphemies that people utter will be forgiven them. But whoever blasphemies against the Holy Spirit will never have forgiveness, but is guilty of an everlasting sin.” For they had said, “He has an unclean spirit.”

His mother and his brothers arrived. Standing outside they sent word to him and called him. A crowd seated around him told him, “Your mother and your brothers and your sisters are outside asking for you.”

Reflection Jesus’ mother and brothers
The family of Jesus goes down from Nazareth to Capernaum where Jesus’ preaching ministry is based when they hear that he and his disciples have no more time to eat and he is “out of his mind.” His family wants to protect him. People do not give him a break.

Some scribes from Jerusalem also arrive. They claim Jesus is possessed by Beelzebul. They see his power of exorcism as coming from Beelzebul, the Evil One. Jesus handles these two accusations by questioning them. He is neither insane nor under the influence of Beelzebul.

When he is notified of the arrival of his mother and cousins, Jesus says, “Whoever does the will of God is my brother and sister and mother.”

In the First Reading, God calls Adam and Eve who have not heeded the will of God. Their fall is clearly instigated by the devil. God does not let their sin go unpunished. God sends a strong message to the devil and to those who listen to it. The serpent, the woman, and the man receive their corresponding punishments. Yet God promises redemption, declaring, “I will put enmity between you and the woman…”

In the Second Reading, Paul affirms his commitment to do God’s will. He believes that God will raise him up just as God raised his Son. As a person living in faith, Paul looks not for what is earthly and transitory. His sights are on to the unseen eternal dwelling made by God.

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SOURCE: “365 Days with the Lord 2018,” ST. PAULS Philippines, 7708 St. Paul Rd., SAV, Makati City (Phils.); Tel.: 895-9701; Fax 895-7328; E-mail: books@stpauls.ph; Website: http://www.stpauls.ph.

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