“Because of that answer, go back home, where you will find that demon has gone out of your daughter.” (Mk 7:29)
Today’s Passages: Mk 7:24-30; Gen 2:18-25
Meditation: Today’s meditation verse calls us for an authentic faith in Jesus, even amidst trials and tribulations. The Marcan narrative of the miracle is a little different from that of Mt 15:21-28. In the Mathew’s gospel we find Jesus’ disciples intervening and interceding for the gentile woman, Jesus’ total indifferent and negative attitude toward the woman, and his response as to his mission that is limited only to the people of Israel. The differences found in both these narratives could be explained from the point of view of their original readership.
We know that the gospel of Mathew was written for the Jewish Christians living in Palestine, whereas the Marcan gospel addresses the Jewish people living among the gentiles outside Palestine. Therefore, some elements supporting the Jewish traditions may be emphasized more in Mathew, while Mark may not give so much importance to those elements which hurt the gentiles. Therefore, the absence of the above-said elements in the Marcan narrative could be understood from its original audience/readers, viz., the Jewish Christians who were living in the gentile area.
Now let us come to our meditation point proper: “Because of that answer, go back home, where you will find that demon has gone out of your daughter.” (Mk 7:29) That means Jesus is highly impressed by her strong faith in him! However, I tend to believe that it is more than Jesus we are really strengthened and encouraged by her confession of faith in Jesus.
In the gospels, at times, miracles are also moments of the manifestation of God’s glory: “This illness will not end in death; rather it is for God’s glory, so that the Son of God may be glorified through it.” (Jn 11:4) The result was that “many of the Jews who had come to visit Mary believed in Jesus when they saw what he did [i.e., the raising of Lazarus].” (Jn 11:45) Therefore, Jesus’ apparent indifferent attitude toward woman’s prayer and her response to Jesus is given to us today as a lesson for our lives and faith formation.
The psalmist says, “O Lord, you have examined me and you know me. You know when I sit and when I rise; you discern my thoughts from afar. You observe my activities and times of rest; you are familiar with all my ways.” (Ps 139:1-3) Though he is omniscient, he wants our faith properly expressed for our good and for the good of others. Examples of Abraham, Noah, Moses, and Job are there in the bible. God’s silence is not always the sign of his rejection of our petitions and prayers.
Prayer: Lord God, we thank you and praise you for your daily eternal bread. God, give us tests and trials in our lives along with the strength and faith to face these challenges. The word of the Lord says, “Consider yourselves fortunate, my brothers, when you meet with every kind of trial, for you know that the testing of your faith makes you steadfast.” (Js 1:2-3) Let this word be an anointing today in our lives. We ask for this grace through Christ our Lord. Amen!
Greetings: God is with you! Wish you a blissful Thursday!