Fifth Sunday in Ordinary Time – Year B

Posté par diaconos le 3 février 2021

Jesus heals many people with all kinds of illnesses

Une pause par jour – 13 janvier 2016 | «Notre-Dame des 3 Vallées

# Signs and miracles were the business of the charismatics, proof of the intimacy of their relationship with God who granted them these powers, writes Paula Fredriksen. Flavius Josephus, as well as some closer rabbinic sources and the New Testament, keeps the memory of these individuals alive. A certain Eleazar cast out demons from the possessed; Hanina ben Dosa of Galilee healed from a distance; the historian Geza Vermes saw a striking parallel between this thaumaturgical power and that attributed to Jesus in the episode of the healing of the son of an officer, where Jesus was supposed to act from a distance.

Other charismatics commanded nature: Honi, the circle tracer (« Onias » in Josephus), and his grandson Hanan were reputed to bring rain. These rainmakers were aware of their special relationship with God: Hanan the rainmaker even went so far as to pray that his audience would distinguish between him and the one who gave the rain, the Father in heaven. In general, historians admire that Jesus presented himself as a healer and exorcist in an act of salvation in accordance with his word of liberation. The miracle plays an important role in the conversion to Christianity.


From the Gospel of Jesus Christ according to Saint Mark

At that time, as soon as they left the synagogue of Capernaum, Jesus and his disciples went with James and John to the house of Simon and Andrew. Now Simon’s mother-in-law was in bed with a fever. Immediately they told Jesus about the sick woman. Jesus came and took her by the hand and raised her up.

The fever left her, and she served them. When evening came, after sunset, all those who were sick or possessed by demons were brought to him. The whole town was rushing to the gate. He healed many people with all kinds of diseases, and cast out many demons; he prevented the demons from speaking, because they knew who he was.

The next day Jesus got up, well before dawn. He went out and went to a deserted place, and there he prayed. Simon and those who were with him went out to look for him. They found him and said to him, « Everyone is looking for you. « Jesus said to them, « Let us go elsewhere, to the villages nearby, so that I may proclaim the gospel there also; for this is why I came out. « And he went about all Galilee, proclaiming the gospel in their synagogues and casting out demons.  » (Mk 1, 29-39)

Many healings of Jesus

Matthew, as well as Mark, indicated that Jesus healed Simon’s mother-in-law at the request of his disciples. While Mark says that they immediately told him about her, Luke noticed that they questioned or consulted him about the sick woman. Thus they became accustomed to call upon him in all their troubles.

And they waited to bring their sick to him until the sabbath had passed, because they thought that it was a violation of the rest of that day: « The Jews therefore said to him that was healed, It is the sabbath; it is not lawful for thee to take up thy bed.  « (Jn 5:10). The evangelists distinguished between the sick and the demon-possessed: « At evening they brought many demon-possessed to Jesus. He cast out the spirits with his word and healed all the sick. « (Mt 8:16)

The whole city means most of its inhabitants who crowded to the door of the house where Jesus was. He imposed silence on them to prevent them from talking about him, because they knew him, and from then on they would have given him a testimony that Jesus rejected. This passage shows how many miracles Jesus performed that are not told in the Gospels.

John himself observed them and several other passages in the gospels allude to many healings that were only mentioned. All of Jesus’ activity was also infinitely richer than the gospel accounts report. Mark and Luke had this account alone.  The former retained various features that were particular to him.

He came out of the house where he had healed the healings mentioned here. He withdrew to a deserted place to re-soak his soul in the fellowship of God, his Father: there he prayed. This mention of Jesus’ prayers, which recurs quite frequently in the Gospels, sheds a bright light on Jesus’ relationship with his Father during the time of his lowering to the earth. He needed prayer: how much more so did his disciples!

Those who were with Simon were his fellow disciples James and John. They went in search of him with the intention of bringing him back to the crowd that had surrounded him the day before: they all sought Jesus.   Jesus was troubled in his retreat and his meditation; and if he did not give in to their desires, it was to take his devoted activity elsewhere.

He left his home with the intention of leaving Capernaum for some time to preach in the various villages of Galilee. This was the first meaning that comes to mind according to the context and which is accepted by many interpreters. Others thought it meant: this is why I came out, from the  bosom of the Father and came into the world to preach the Gospel everywhere. Preaching the divine truth and doing good by destroying the kingdom of darkness was Jesus’ double activity.

Deacon Michel Houyoux

Links to other Christian websites

◊ Young catholics : click here to read the paper → 5th Sunday in Ordinary Time – Year B

◊ , Catholic Diocese of Auckland  : click here to read the paper → Fifth Sunday in Ordinary Time, Year B

Fr. John DeRiso, C.S.C : « Fifth Sunday in Ordinary Time »

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