Daily Reflection for Monday, January 24, 2022
Peace and Blessings, Friends and Parishioners,
We encourage you to reflect on Monday’s readings at this link:
If you prefer to use your own Bible, the readings are:
First Reading: 2 Samuel 5:1-7, 10
Responsorial: Psalm 89:20, 21-22, 25-26
Gospel: Mark 3:22-30
Our reflection on Monday’s readings:
The scribes who had come from Jerusalem said, “He is possessed by Beelzebul,” and “By the prince of demons he drives out demons.” Mark 3:22
To encourage hatred, violence, murder, and war against “enemies,” one of the first things we need to do is to dehumanize them. We need to vilify them in cartoons, create videos and movies about how savage and inhumane they are. Come up with catchy new, names for them.
We have all seen this, and sadly, maybe even condoned it, or promoted it. Native Americans needed to be described as savages so the U.S. could break treaties with them and take their land. To support the Mexican War, the Mexicans were described as lazy and occupying land that should belong to the U.S. The Germans and the Japanese needed to be dehumanized. In Vietnam, Afghanistan, Iraq and elsewhere we needed dehumanize the people there. It made it easier to kill them.
In today’s gospel reading, the scribes declared that Jesus was possessed by the devil. He was evil. This was necessary if they were to rationalize killing him, which the Pharisees had already determined was necessary (Mark 3:6).
We’re all taught that Jesus died unjustly. He was innocent. He was framed. The scribes and the Pharisees plotted to arrange for his arrest, unfair trial, and execution. They even conspired with the Roman government to cause his death.
But they knew that Jesus had a following. They knew of his acts of kindness and mercy. They even feared his message of peace, nonviolence, and love for all. To deal with that, they needed to dehumanize and discredit him.
So they declared that he was possessed, was crazy and out of his mind. It made it easier to kill him.
It still goes on today.
Lord, help me to see that all your people, every one of us, is created in your image and loved by you. Thus, I cannot kill.
Peace and blessings,