IN A SYNAGOGUE ONE SABBATH Jesus saw a woman whom an evil spirit had kept hunched over for eighteen years. Calling her to Him, He said:
“Woman, thou art delivered from thy infirmity.”
He laid His hands on her and the woman, instantly cured, began to praise God. The ruler of the synagogue then complained that Jesus broke the Sabbath. He replied:
“Hypocrites! does not each one of you on the Sabbath loose his ox or ass from the manger, and lead it forth to water? And this woman, daughter of Abraham as she is, whom Satan has bound, lo, for eighteen years, ought not she to be loosed from this bond on the Sabbath?”
Now He made for Jerusalem. In one village He was asked whether only a few men would be saved. He answered:
“Strive to enter by the narrow gate; for many I tell you, will seek to enter and will not be able. But when the Master of the house has entered and shut the door, you will begin to stand outside and knock at the door, saying, ‘Lord, open for us!’ And He shall say to you in answer, ‘I do not know where you are from.’ Then you shall begin to say, ‘We ate and drank in Thy presence, and Thou didst teach in our streets.’ And He shall say to you, ‘I do not know where you are from. Depart from Me, all you workers of iniquity.’ There will be the weeping, and the gnashing of teeth, when you shall see Abraham and Isaac and Jacob and all the prophets in the kingdom of God, but you yourselves cast forth outside. And they will come from the east and from the west, from the north and from the south, and will feast in the kingdom of God. And behold, there are those last who will be first, and there are those first who will be last.”
The same day some Pharisees told Him to leave because Herod desired to kill Him, but Jesus said:
“Go and say to that fox, ‘Behold, I cast out devils and perform cures today and tomorrow, and the third day I am to end My course. Nevertheless, I must go on My way today and tomorrow and the next day, for it cannot be that a prophet perish outside Jerusalem.”
Meditation: “I do not know where you are from.” It might happen that we would hear these words from Christ when He judges us for eternity. If He will be able to say that, it will be because we have ignored Him here. Sacramentally He is present in the tabernacle of every Catholic church. How often do I visit Him? He is present also in every member of His Mystical Body. How often do I see Him in my fellow Christians and treat them as fellow members of Christ?
Information from The Life of Christ “Our Lord’s Life with Lesson in His Own Words for Our Life Today” The Catholic Press, Inc. 1959. 159-160. © 1954 edited by Reverend John P. O’Connell, MASTD and Jex Martin, following mainly A Chronological Harmony of the Gospels by Stephen J Hartdegen OFM NIHIL OBSTAT John A McMahon; IMPRIMATUR Samuel Cardinal Stritch, Archbishop of Chicago August 1, 1953. Print. Drawing by Albert H Winkler.