Catholic Mass Readings and Reflection March 07, 2024


Published on:

R/. O that today you would listen to his voice! Harden not your hearts.

V/. Glory and praise to you, O Christ

R/. Glory and praise to you, O Christ

V/. Even now, declares the Lord, return to me with all your heart, for I am gracious and merciful.

R/. Glory and praise to you, O Christ.

At that time: Jesus was casting out a demon that was mute. When the demon had gone out, the mute man spoke, and the people marvelled. But some of them said, “He casts out demons by Beelzebul, the prince of demons,” while others, to test him, kept seeking from him a sign from heaven. But he, knowing their thoughts, said to them, “Every kingdom divided against itself is laid waste, and a divided household falls. And if Satan also is divided against himself, how will his kingdom stand? For you say that I cast out demons by Beelzebul. And if I cast out demons by Beelzebul, by whom do your sons cast them out? Therefore they will be your judges. But if it is by the finger of God that I cast out demons, then the kingdom of God has come upon you. When a strong man, fully armed, guards his own palace, his goods are safe; but when one stronger than he attacks him and overcomes him, he takes away his armour in which he trusted and divides his spoil. Whoever is not with me is against me, and whoever does not gather with me scatters.

1.      The struggle between God’s unfailing fidelity and people’s recurrent infidelity characterizes the whole salvation history. God was abundantly merciful toward them; worked mighty works in their lives; and blessed them with prosperity and victory. He teaches and guides them through prophets. But repeatedly people become ungrateful, stubborn, disobedient, and unfaithful

2.       This infidelity of people is so vividly described in the first reading from Jeremiah. They did not obey or incline their ear. They stiffened their neck. They did not accept discipline. Truth has perished; it is cut off from their lips. They walked in their own counsels and in the stubbornness of their evil hearts. They were so fluctuating and regressing, going backwards and not forwards

3.       The same stiff-necked and defiant mentality continues in Jesus’ time too. All his teaching and preaching fell on the deaf ears of his people. His mighty miracles fail to evoke in them a positive response.

4.       They not only refuse to believe him, but also constantly trouble and persecute him. They make wrong attributions. They attribute his miracles to a coalition with Satan. They accuse him that he casts out demons by Beezebul, the prince of demons

5.       The people of his time are no different from their predecessors. Little do they realize that good and faith cannot come from Satan who is all evil. They are blind to the truth that every harm and destruction belongs to evil. All that is good, healing, and constructive can come only from God

6.       Jesus cannot expel demons with the help of their leader. Jesus is able to heal not because he works in tie-up with the evil but because he is more powerful than the evil one. Jesus is that stronger one in the gospel

7.       He attacks and overcomes the strong man who is Satan. He takes away his armour and wins back those under the evil’s siege. The healing of the possessed mute man is a clear indicator of this surpassing power of Jesus.

Catholic Leaf is website that provides Sundays and Weekdays catholic reflections. Please use catholic leaf as a tool for preparing your Homily.