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Monday, 19 November 2018 08:39

February 15, 2019 Featured

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book PNG2112Gospel: Mark 7:31-37
Again, Jesus set out: from the country of Tyre he passed through Sidon  and,  skirting  the  sea  of  Galilee, he came to the territory of Decapolis. There, a deaf man, who also had difficulty in speaking, was brought to him. They asked Jesus to lay his hand upon him.Jesus took him apart from the crowd, put his fingers into the man’s ears, and touched his tongue with spittle.

Then, looking up to heaven, he said with a deep sigh, “Ephphata!” that is, “Be opened!” And immediately, his ears were opened, his tongue was loosened, and he began to speak clearly. Jesus ordered them not to tell anyone about it; but the more he  insisted,  the  more  they  proclaimed  it. The  people were  completely  astonished  and  said,  “He  has  done all things well; he makes the deaf hear and the dumb speak.”

Reflections:
“Be opened!”

On one level there is a certain sameness to many of the hea­ling miracles of Jesus. A blind man, a deaf man, a sick child, a woman with a flow of blood, a man possessed with demons: Jesus encounters them, they are restored to health, the people are astonished. Yet there are notable variations. Sometimes Jesus heals with a word; sometimes, as in this story, after performing a strange shamanic ritual. Sometimes there is an emphasis on the faith of the sick person, or of his friends, in eli­citing the miracle; at other times, as in this case, it is more in the nature of a patient being brought in to see the physician. Yet for each of those who is healed, the encounter is unique, in fact the only truly significant event—the creation of a new world! Before and after! No wonder that the “pa­tients” are warned to keep quiet, the more they need to talk about it! Something more than a deaf man’s ears have been “opened!” It will not be closed again.Jesus did not bring healing just for people in general, or for “the world” in some generic sense,” but for individual men and women. For you and me.

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