MONDAY, SECOND WEEK IN ORDINARY TIME
Memorial of Saint Joseph Vaz, Pr
1 Cor 1: 18-25; Ps 117: 1,2; Mk 1:14-20
(or) Heb 5: 1-10; Ps 110: 1-4; Mk 2: 18-22
JESUS BRINGS ABUNDANCE OF JOY
Jesus today is confronted by the Jewish leaders and he defends his disciples who do not fast. Using analogies, Jesus is saying that he and his teaching and the way he is proposing cannot be judged by the old, traditional standards. Jesus has brought about a radical shift in the ways we are to relate to God and each other. Jesus doesn’t want us to hold rigidly to the past and to be resistant to the new work of his Holy Spirit in our life.
The traditional ways identified with the Pharisees and with John the Baptist were one where loyalty to God was expressed through strict observation of laws and external practices of commitment like fasting. The way of Jesus is quite different. It is primarily interior rather than just the exterior. It is ultimately rooted in relationships based on love, a love that always seeks the well being of the other.
Fasting was a common practice in the Jewish religious, thus the question about why Jesus and his disciples are not fasting. Jesus clarifies their question using images of a wedding celebration and the fact that no one fasts during a wedding feast. It’s a time of joy and celebration, not a time for mourning or sober reflection. In this way, Jesus clarifies that Jesus himself is the Bridegroom and his disciples are the wedding guests.
When Jesus was present the disciples couldn’t fast, it was a time of joy. The Old Testament refers to God as the bridegroom. So the when he tells about the bridegroom he is claiming himself to be a God a long awaited bridegroom coming for his bride. The word invites us to recognize the bridegroom, many have failed to recognize Him. When Jesus is truly present in our being there is no sadness no fasting and mourning in any way. But there is an abundance of Joy. Jesus invites today for us to share in that joy.
Response: Go into the world and proclaim the gospel.
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