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Sunday, January 17, 2021

Reflection 2021-01-18 Monday Week 2 in Ordinary Time

Hebrews 5:1-10; Psalm 110; Mark 2:18-22
The First Reading speaks of Jesus Although he was a Son, he learned obedience through which he suffered, and having been made perfect, he became the source of eternal salvation for all who obey him, having been designated by God a high priest according to the order of Melchizedek. How can Jesus be made perfect if he was the perfect human being? The word perfect can also mean complete, consummated. The Douay-Rheims Bible translates this as And being consummated. This means his human life was completed. Since all human beings die, Jesus had to die, so his humanity can be made complete.
This completion of his human life was the result of his obedience to the Father, so that when the Father raises Jesus from the dead, Jesus can be the source of eternal salvation. How can Jesus save us from the dead, if he himself did not die. The death of Jesus conquered sin and death and when we follow him into death, we also will follow him into eternal salvation by obeying him. We cannot be complete human beings if we do not obey God. It is only through obedience that God leads us through death to new life, in Jesus. Since there is no other person who rose from the dead, Jesus is the center of our life and our faith.
This is why in the Gospel today, when people ask Jesus why his disciples do not fast when John’s disciples and the Pharisees fast, Jesus points to himself as the reason. His disciples do not fast because Jesus is present. Why do we fast? Fasting is a physical representation of our soul’s yearning and desire for God. From the perspective of Jesus, his disciples already have him, the Son of God, so they do not need to yearn for God. But when he is taken from them, the disciples will again yearn for God, and then they will fast. Jesus said no one sews a piece of unshrunken cloth on an old cloak; otherwise the patch pulls away from it, the new from the old, and a worse tear is made. This unshrunken cloth is Jesus who cannot be used to patch what is lacking in the old Law. The Law needs to be viewed from a different perspective, with Jesus as the center. Jesus is not canceling the Law, but he is the fulfillment of the Law.
Jesus gives another parable about new wine being put into old wineskins because the wine will burst the skins, and the wine is lost. Jesus is the new wine. He cannot be put into old wineskin or containers. The minds of people need to change. Their perspective needs to change otherwise, the old wineskin will burst and the wine is lost.
The Truth of Jesus requires a new perspective. It cannot be patched to fill up what is lacking in our misunderstanding. It also cannot be placed into an old mind. Our ideas of Jesus needs to completely change. To know Jesus fully, we need to remove all preconceived ideas about him, and let him reveal him to us, in the way he wants. We cannot put God in a box and demand he act the way we want. We require a new perspective. This new perspective requires a death of our ideas about Jesus and God. This requires a dying to ourselves and rising with Jesus so we can see him in a new light.
Lord, help me to allow you to lead me to change my perspective of you so I can complete my life in you. Teach me to obey you Lord, to submit to you and let you take charge of my life.

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