Tuesday of the First Week in Ordinary Time

Daily Devotions

Heb 2:5-12; Ps 8:2-9; Mk 1:21b-28

The Name of the LORD our God is glorious over all the earth.  Indeed, he has made known this Name through his Son, our Lord Jesus Christ.  The Lord Jesus reveals God as Abba, loving Father.  He has revealed in teaching us how to pray that we, too, are sons and daughters of the same Father.  Indeed, the Father and the Son are mindful of the whole human race because we are made in the very image and likeness of God.  We are taken care of; we are chosen and special in his eyes.  We have been made a little less than the angels; we have been crowned with glory and honor.  The Lord Jesus teaches us that we share in his dominion over all the earth.  All, created beings are subject to us, even the fallen angels are subject to us in Christ, in his glorious name we are safe.  All creatures of our God and King are made subject to us, and we realize this truth in the witness and miracles of the Lord Jesus.  This leader in our salvation has made us perfect by his suffering.  By his wounds, we are all healed.  He who consecrates us and we who are consecrated have one origin.  This great mystery of our unity with the Christ is celebrated in the gospel when the Lord Jesus first casts out demons during his public ministry in the Gospel of Saint Mark.  Indeed, this simple encounter between the Lord and the evil one is a model for the ritual throughout history and in our present day ministry of exorcism.  When the Church through its priest takes on an exorcism, we join in prayer, “deliver us from evil,” and rejoice with the afflicted to have the Lord “putting all things under his feet.”

 

The Jesus we see is the same Jesus mentioned in this first reading from the Letter to the Hebrews.  We see him crowned with glory and honor because he has suffered death.  As the son of man made a little less than an angel, the Eternal Son of the Eternal Father is able to offer his death as a loving act of self-sacrifice for us and in obedience to the Father.  Because the Lord Jesus has died and risen to life, we have no fear.  Death does not dominate our life.  Death has no power to destroy our hope.  The Son of God is the son of man.  He is related to us; he is our brother.  We share with him in a timeless and universal human experience called death.  However, the death of the Lord Jesus was not a gentle falling asleep in old age; his death was a brutal execution at the hands of those who hated him.  Even those who were disciples, his brothers and sisters, were afraid to draw near to the Crucified.  They had fear to draw near.  They were afraid of somehow sharing in his death, yet He had no fear to share in our death.  In laying down his life for us and in rising from the dead, the Lord Jesus crowns us with glory and honor.  Now, having embraced the mystery of the Cross; we dare to praise the Lord in the grand assembly.  Now, we have the courage to proclaim His Name to our brethren.

 

In today’s gospel the demon cried out the Name, Jesus of Nazareth.  However, it was not in praise; it was in terror that the demon cried out.  This was not the witness that the Lord Jesus wanted.  He did not want to be recognized and proclaimed by the demons.  So, without much ado, he dispatched this noisy demon.  “Quiet! Come out of him!”  Jesus is the LORD, and his word—even his thought is enough to command any and all of the evil ones.  The crowd reacts with awe and wonder at his power, and his reputation spreads all over the countryside.  We are not to be caught up in fear at the presence of evil in our world, and we are capable commanding the evil one to silence and to departure in the Name of Jesus of Nazareth.  Without giving glory to the demon and without attempting to struggle with the evil one on our own, we must put all things under his feet.