Fourth Sunday in Ordinary Time-B
I Reading: Deuteronomy 18:15-20: I will raise up a prophet and I will put my words into his mouth.
II Reading: 1Corinthians 7:32-35: An unmarried woman can devote herself to the Lord’s affairs: all she needs worry about is being holy.
Gospel: Mark 1:21-28: He taught them with authority.
Jesus’ Teaching and Its Impact: Launching a New Ministry (1:21-22)
Jesus is launching a new ministry in the very beginning with his authority which is very important for the believer as he goes forth serving his Lord.
1. Jesus began with worship: Immediately-in the Synagogue (v.21)
2. Jesus seized the opportunity to teach (v.21)
3. Jesus amazed the crowd (v.22)
a. His teaching (v.14-15)
b. His authority
Jesus’ Power over Evil Spirits and Its Impact:
Delivering the Most Enslaved (1:23-28)
People can be delivered from all the forces of evil by the power of Jesus. Jesus has the power to deliver man (Rom 8:31; 1Jn 4:4; Mt 8:28-34; 17:14-21; Lk 8:26-39)
1. Picture 1: The need of the possessed man (v.23-24)
a. He was in the synagogue: nobody helped him or cured him
b. He raged and cried out, sensed and recoiled from purity
c. He identified Jesus: The Son of God, the Holy One of God
2. Picture 2: The Power of Jesus (v.25-26)
Who is the agent or the author of evil spirit or who created the evil spirit? The misuse of the freedom and disobedience to the command of God and the will of God. The first parents disobeyed God’s command and misused the human freedom as a result sin and death came into the world where as Mother Mary and Jesus obeyed God’s will and brought eternal life and salvation to the humankind. The disobedient angels were also thrown down from the heaven.
Jesus rebuked the evil spirit: because of Satan’s influence, leading, cheating, tempting, and deceiving the man to take away from God and to influence him to disobey the commandments of God or will of God like Adam and Eve in the Genesis deceived by the serpent. Now the seed (Jesus) is crushing the head of evil spirit and its power over man.
Moses talked about this real Prophet Jesus the Messiah who would lead the people of God in the first reading of today. That is what John the Baptist said, “I am not a prophet, Elijah and Christ..But one who comes after me He is the Christ the Messiah.” Thus we need to listen to the voice of Jesus and obey his teaching and commands of loving God and loving neighbours.
Paul is urging to live a holy life for God rather than living according to own will or plan or wish but to live according to God’s will and plan which can bring victory over evil spirit.
How can we love Jesus and obey or listen to his command? By four things:
ii. Reading the Word of God and practice them in life
iii. Sacrament of Reconciliation
iv. The Eucharist and doing good works in life for others and for God.
a. The evil spirit obeyed
3. Picture 3: The impact upon people (v.27-28)
a. The people were amazed
b. The people questioned: What power, what new revelation (teaching) is this?
c. The people spread his fame
Thought: knowing that Jesus is the Holy One of God is not enough. A person has to believe in the power of Jesus Christ and love him and live a clean and pure heart.
One of the major purposes of Jesus in confronting evil spirits was to prove his Messiahship (Mt 8:28-34). He is the Messiah.