Thursday 6 July 2023

About Today Readings

St Maria Goretti

Genesis 22:1-19. I will walk in the presence of the Lord in the land of the living – Psalm 114(116):1-6, 8-9. Matthew 9:1-8.

Faith, forgiveness and healing are all intertwined

The place referred to as Jesus’ ‘own town’ is likely Capernaum, a tiny fishing village of 1500 people on the Sea of Galilee that served as Jesus’ base. A number of his disciples hailed from Capernaum, so Jesus likely knew everyone there. At this point, Jesus has a growing reputation as a healer, so some men carry their paralysed friend lying on a mat over to Jesus. This man would have been known to everyone in town. And instead of healing him outright, Jesus announces that his sins are forgiven. I wonder whether the paralysed man was worried his condition was caused by something he had done? Nevertheless, Jesus flagrantly forgiving sins, likely in front of a crowd of people, irks Capernaum’s religious leaders, who cry ‘blasphemy’. God alone can forgive sins, they say. Only then, in a demonstration of his power and authority, does Jesus heal the paralysed man, revealing that faith, forgiveness and healing are all intertwined and interrelated parts of Christ’s restorative work.

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