1st Week, Tuesday, Jan 12

Hebrews 2:5-12 / Mark 1:21-28

God exalts humankind; "What is man that you are mindful of him?" 

The 19th-century German philosopher Arthur Schopenhauer was out walking one day. His head was down and he was lost in thought. He accidentally bumped into an elderly lady. One of the most tragic lapses of memory we can have is to forget who we are. We are children of God the Father, brothers and sisters of Jesus Christ, and temples of the Holy Spirit.


How well are we living out the great dignity that God has given us? "Great lord of all things, yet prey to all; Sole judge of truth, in endless error hurdled; The glory, jest and riddle of the world."

Alexander Pope's description of humankind


Though Jesus emptied himself of all privileges as God or, as the Letter to the Hebrews says, was made lower than the angels to join us in our wounded humanity – he who was without sin passed through death; his suffering was the way to glory for him and for us. But his power could not be hidden, when he spoke with authority and was leading a great number of brothers and sister to glory.


The learning process is indeed a slow and long process. Most of us have at least 10 years of schooling but we all know that learning is a life-long process. Yet there are still certain questions that we don't have any answers for. 

For e.g. in the gospel passage, why is there a man possessed by an unclean spirit in the synagogue of all places? Or why is there so much evil and terror and horror in the world despite the fact that Jesus had already came and He is supposed to bring us peace? The 1st reading puts it wisely: At present, it is true, we are not able to see that everything has been put under His command. But in Jesus we also saw how He was subjected to evil in the forms of suffering and death. Yet He overcame death and conquered sin and He is now crowned with glory and splendor. 

So if there is anything we need to learn about life, we need to turn to Jesus and learn from Him. In the midst of the troubles and evils of life, let us stay close to Jesus and learn from Him to be humble and gentle of heart. For His yoke is easy and His burden light and He will lead us into victory.


In the gospel, Mark shows the power of God at work in Jesus, the Messiah. It is a power that is contested by the powers of evil, that must struggle and come to grip with contradiction and suffering, but which will ultimately win – through struggle and contradiction. Such is also the power of God today in the world, the power of God in answer to our faith and prayer.


Let us pray: God, source of all power, we like to imagine that we can do great things, but when it comes to your work, to your kingdom of truth and justice, we have to recognize, perhaps grudgingly, that we are weak and ineffective. Help us to acknowledge this weakness not as defeat, but as our real strength, to let your power reveal itself in suffering, in struggles, and in gentleness and love, which you show us in Jesus Christ, your Son and our Lord for ever.