Friday, June 08, 2007

Friday in the 9th Week of Ordinary Time (I)
Blessings of the Son & Lord

Readings: Tobit 11:5-17; Psalm 146:1b-2, 6c-7, 8-9a, 9bc-10; Mark 12:35-37

Even the scripture scholars agree that our gospel passage for today is a “puzzle” because it seems to reject the belief that Jesus is descended from the line of King David, even though, in an earlier verse (Mark 10:48) the blind Bartimaeus refers to Jesus as "Son of David". The intention of the author is far from clear. Even so, might we not still draw fruit from the passage, especially when we listen or read it in conjunction with the first reading?

Might we not, for example, be struck by the numerous times in which the word “bless” and its variants are used in the first reading? And might we not also be moved by how although these blessings come ultimately from God, Tobit experiences them especially through his son Tobias. It is at the hands of Tobias that Tobit’s eyes are healed. It is also through the exploits of Tobias that Tobit sees his wealth restored and his family expanded. Can we not help but rejoice with Tobit as we listen to the description of his triumph and of the feast he throws for the Jews of Nineveh? How great indeed are the blessings that God has showered upon Tobit in his son.

And yet, Tobit’s experience pales in comparison to that of David. For in Jesus’ life, death and resurrection, God’s blessings reach their climax. There is nothing more that God could give. In Jesus, David’s son and David’s Lord, God’s blessings are poured out far beyond the line of David, reaching out to the ends of the universe. Might this not be a possible reason why we are told that the great majority of people heard this with delight? In Jesus, the healing and restoration that Tobit experienced is also theirs to enjoy.

And it is also ours to enjoy as well. But we need first to recognize and to acknowledge the crucified and risen Lord in our midst, in the ordinary events and people we encounter. To do this, like Tobit, we need to submit our spiritual blindness to the healing touch of David’s Son and Lord, so that we might see the One who meets us and blesses us each day, especially in the Eucharistic feast that we share.

How are we being invited to acknowledge Christ as our Lord today?

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