Power of prayers
February 24, 2020
7th Week in Ordinary Time
1st Reading: Jas 3:13-18
Gospel: Mk 9:14–29When they came to the place where they had left the disciples, they saw many people around and some teachers of the law arguing with them. When the people saw Jesus, they were astonished and ran to greet him.
He asked, “What are you arguing about with them?” A man answered him from the crowd,
“Master, I brought my son to you for he has a dumb spirit. Whenever the spirit seizes him, it throws him down and he foams at the mouth, grinds his teeth and becomes stiff all over. I asked your disciples to drive the spirit out, but they could not.” Jesus replied, “You faithless people.
How long must I be with you? How long must I put up with you? Bring him to me.” And they brought the boy to him. As soon as the spirit saw Jesus, it shook and convulsed the boy who fell on the ground and began rolling about, foaming at the mouth. Then Jesus asked the father, “How long has this been happening to him?” He replied, “From childhood. And it has often thrown him into the fire and into the water to destroy him. If you can do anything, have pity on us and help us.”
Jesus said to him, “Why do you say: ‘If you can?’ All things are possible for one who believes.”
Immediately the father of the boy cried out, “I do believe, but help the little faith I have.”
Jesus saw that the crowd was increasing rapidly, so he ordered the evil spirit, “Dumb and deaf spirit, I command you: Leave the boy and never enter him again.” The evil spirit shook and convulsed the boy and with a terrible shriek came out. The boy lay like a corpse and people said, “He is dead.” But Jesus took him by the hand and lifted him and the boy stood up.
After Jesus had gone indoors, his disciples asked him privately, “Why couldn’t we drive out the spirit?” And he answered, “Only prayer can drive out this kind, nothing else.”
(Daily Gospel in the Assimilated Life Experience)
The era of the devil ended when God inserted himself into human history. But today we have reasons to suspect that the time of the devil is back. We are not saying that God is out of control.
The devil is back to power because we ourselves have created the ambience of moral degradation. Not all is lost for us though. In today’s Gospel reading Jesus points out to us the weak side of the devil and the weapon to use in order to disable him. That weapon is prayer.
According to St. Ignatius de Loyola we must pray like everything depended on God, but work like everything depended on us. As we pray for deliverance, we must work hard to not only to bail ourselves out from occasions of sin but also to dismantle sinful structures. – (Atty.) Rev. Fr. Dan Domingo P. delos Angeles, Jr., JD, DM
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