Monday, February 23, 2009

Yesterday's Gospel

This will probably sound stupid, but that's what I'm best at, so why suppress such a talent?

Anyways, I was thinking of yesterday's Gospel on my way in to work today, specifically the following bits:

They came bringing to him a paralytic carried by four men.Unable to get near Jesus because of the crowd,they opened up the roof above him.After they had broken through,they let down the mat on which the paralytic was lying.

When Jesus saw their faith, he said to the paralytic,"Child, your sins are forgiven."

It's from Mark 2, by the way.

I was thinking first about the bit where Jesus works the miracle not because of the paralytic's faith, but apparently because of his buddies' faith. Note the comment that He saw "THEIR faith."

So I'm thinking about that, and it occurred to me that they lowered this guy down from the ceiling. It was the faith of those above that got him healed. I wondered if this was some sort of hinting at the communion of saints in heaven helping us folks down here. It's a bit attenuated, I know, but an old priest of mine used to say, "Scripture has no coincidences." I tend to read the Bible with that in mind.

One other thing that kicked this idea off. If you're in habitual sin, your will tends to be completely broken when it comes to stopping it. This is something that gets referred to by a lot of names: killing the conscience, blinding the moral sense, hardening the heart, etc. You are, in effect, paralyzed. This, I think, is clearly implicated by the passage. The actual grace needed to bump you to repentance ultimately does come from God, but it is often through the prayers of the saints that one is delivered to His mercy. Ask any mother who has had long conversations with St. Monica about a wayward child.

Just rambling here. Move along . . .

And thanks to Karl for letting me know how he puts the cool label things on posts.

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