First Reading: Heb 4:1-5. 11; Psalm: 78 R. v. 7b; Gospel: Mk 2:1-12
OPENNESS TO TRUTH
BY FR VALENTINE NNAMDI EGBUONU, MSP
“Why does this man speak like this? (Mk 2:7).
The scribes and Pharisees always faced criticism in the scriptures. But perhaps we can pedal it soft on our criticism of them. What these men did is what most learned men and women will do today if Jesus had come in our day and time. The scribes were highly educated men and as such do not take any proposition or claim without questioning or critical evaluation. It is part of the science of knowing to doubt and ask questions in the search for truth and knowledge. Whenever the scribes doubted and asked Jesus a question, it was often in search for truth. But their major problem was lack of openness to the truth.
The healing of the paralytic was a great surprise to the crowd that gathered about Jesus. The manner in which Jesus healed him was very strange and unorthodox to the teaching that the scribes were meant to protect. When the scribes heard Jesus say to the paralytic, “Child, your sins are forgiven” it was not out of place that they questioned in their hearts why Jesus had to say this. For truly, only God forgives sins. But since they believed that terrible illnesses was the consequence of sin, and to cure an illness like paralysis, the healer must have the power to forgive sins; they therefore have no excuse not to believe in the authority of Jesus to forgive sins when he eventually cured this sick man. But this did not change their opinion of Jesus.
It is important to ask questions when certain things are not clear to us. But how open are we to accepting certain truths or reality that contradicts what we think is right. A lot of Christians today are reticent to ask questions regarding certain unclear teachings of the faith. They feel as though they question God when they do so. But this shouldn’t be so. Our faith is deepened by questioning and reflection. God enlightens the mind of those who search for the truth. And if we are open to the truth without any prejudice, God will heal our search. In life generally, when we remain incorrigible in the face of truth; we can never grow.
PRAYER FOR THE DAY
Lord Jesus, grant us the grace of openness to truth. Amen.