One Monk of the Order of Saint Benedict

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The Word of God and the Body of God reveal each other -- the homily worships both.

January 22, 2007

For Monday of the Third Ordinary Week of the Church Year

Mark 3:22-30

Not even the religious authorities doubt that Jesus has been driving out demons.
However, the authorities attempt to discredit him, saying that the power of Jesus as an exorcist is because Jesus is under the possession of the prince of demons.
Jesus simply points out it is nonsensical to say that the devil plunders the devil.
Then, Jesus presses his own personal claims, and presses charges against the scribes.
Amen, I say to you,
all sins and all blasphemies that people utter will be forgiven them.
But whoever blasphemes against the holy Spirit will never have forgiveness,
but is guilty of an everlasting sin."
For they had said,
"He has an unclean spirit."

Jesus asserts that the Holy Spirit is the force for driving out demons.
The scribes would not disagree with that.
However, Jesus has now put before the scribes the fact that they themselves blaspheme to call the obvious work of the Holy Spirit the devil’s work.
To condemn God with such blasphemy is to close the possibility of accepting forgiveness from God, because forgiveness is also the work of the Holy Spirit.
As Jesus said it, “whoever blasphemes against the Holy Spirit will never have forgiveness, but is guilty of an everlasting sin.”
The scribes, being the record-keepers and interpreters of the law, know that such blasphemy is punishable by death.
Having attempted to discredit Jesus, they have brought on themselves danger of both bodily death and everlasting damnation.
Here… now… with the Gospel and the altar, we are in the presence of the Holy Spirit at work in the words, the flesh and the blood of Christ.
Here is the power to drive out evil and sin from our lives, and so to retake the kingdom of the Father who has sent his Son to ransom and his Spirit to mark his royal sons and daughters.

That God Be Glorified in All


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