Wednesday of the second week in OT2
Daily Scripture Analysis

Daily Gospel

Wednesday of the second week in OT2

Wednesday of the second week in OT2

 

Readings: I Sam 17:32-33, 37, 40-51; Mk 3:1-6.

1/ First Reading: RSV 1 Samuel 17:32 And David said to Saul, "Let no man's heart fail because of him; your servant will go and fight with this Philistine." 33 And Saul said to David, "You are not able to go against this Philistine to fight with him; for you are but a youth, and he has been a man of war from his youth." 37 And David said, "The LORD who delivered me from the paw of the lion and from the paw of the bear, will deliver me from the hand of this Philistine." And Saul said to David, "Go, and the LORD be with you!" 40 Then he took his staff in his hand, and chose five smooth stones from the brook, and put them in his shepherd's bag or wallet; his sling was in his hand, and he drew near to the Philistine. 41 And the Philistine came on and drew near to David, with his shield-bearer in front of him. 42 And when the Philistine looked, and saw David, he disdained him; for he was but a youth, ruddy and comely in appearance. 43 And the Philistine said to David, "Am I a dog, that you come to me with sticks?" And the Philistine cursed David by his gods. 44 The Philistine said to David, "Come to me, and I will give your flesh to the birds of the air and to the beasts of the field." 45 Then David said to the Philistine, "You come to me with a sword and with a spear and with a javelin; but I come to you in the name of the LORD of hosts, the God of the armies of Israel, whom you have defied. 46 This day the LORD will deliver you into my hand, and I will strike you down, and cut off your head; and I will give the dead bodies of the host of the Philistines this day to the birds of the air and to the wild beasts of the earth; that all the earth may know that there is a God in Israel, 47 and that all this assembly may know that the LORD saves not with sword and spear; for the battle is the LORDS and he will give you into our hand." 48 When the Philistine arose and came and drew near to meet David, David ran quickly toward the battle line to meet the Philistine. 49 And David put his hand in his bag and took out a stone, and slung it, and struck the Philistine on his forehead; the stone sank into his forehead, and he fell on his face to the ground. 50 So David prevailed over the Philistine with a sling and with a stone, and struck the Philistine, and killed him; there was no sword in the hand of David. 51 Then David ran and stood over the Philistine, and took his sword and drew it out of its sheath, and killed him, and cut off his head with it. When the Philistines saw that their champion was dead, they fled.

2/ Gospel: RSV Mark 3:1 Again he entered the synagogue, and a man was there who had a withered hand. 2 And they watched him, to see whether he would heal him on the sabbath, so that they might accuse him. 3 And he said to the man who had the withered hand, "Come here." 4 And he said to them, "Is it lawful on the sabbath to do good or to do harm, to save life or to kill?" But they were silent. 5 And he looked around at them with anger, grieved at their hardness of heart, and said to the man, "Stretch out your hand." He stretched it out, and his hand was restored. 6 The Pharisees went out, and immediately held counsel with the Herodians against him, how to destroy him.


I. THEME: Human beings should put their trust in God.

           

            Religion exists is to lead people to God. In order to reach this goal, people need to keep the law. When people obey God’s law, they have a good relationship with God. But people couldn’t maintain good relationship with God because of their sins; therefore, God helps them by giving His Only Son to take away their sins and to reconcile them to God.

            Today readings encourage people to put their trust completely in God. In the first reading, a young man, David, volunteered to fight with Goliath, a man of war from his youth; because David believed that God will put Goliath’s fate into his hand. Due to this important event, God prepared people to welcome David as their king to replace Saul. In the Gospel, Jesus was anger because of Pharisees’ hardness: while he healed people from sins and all kinds of sickness, they always find a reason to persecute and to condemn him.

II. ANALYSIS:

1/ Reading I: The Lord saves not with sword and spear.

            This is a historical event to illustrate God’s power. At first, no one thought David can win over Goliath because Saul, the tallest man of the Israelites, must also surrender. When David asked Saul to let him fight against this Philistine, Saul spoke to David: "You are not able to go against this Philistine to fight with him; for you are but a youth, and he has been a man of war from his youth."

            But David, completely put his trust in God, said to Saul: "The Lord who delivered me from the paw of the lion and from the paw of the bear, will deliver me from the hand of this Philistine." And Saul said to David, "Go, and the Lord be with you!"Then David took his staff in his hand, and chose five smooth stones from the brook, and put them in his shepherd's bag or wallet; his sling was in his hand, and he drew near to the Philistine.      

            (1) Goliath was proud of his power: When the Philistine looked and saw David, he disdained him; for he was but a youth, ruddy and comely in appearance.And the Philistine said to David, "Am I a dog that you come to me with sticks?" And the Philistine cursed David by his gods.The Philistine said to David, "Come to me, and I will give your flesh to the birds of the air and to the beasts of the field."

            (2) David fought in God’s name: Then David said to the Philistine, "You come to me with a sword and with a spear and with a javelin; but I come to you in the name of the Lord of hosts, the God of the armies of Israel, whom you have defied.”

            David believed God shall grant him a victory, not only an individual victory between him and the Philistine but also a victory of the Israelites over the Philistine’s armies. This is why he said: “This day the Lord will deliver you into my hand, and I will strike you down, and cut off your head; and I will give the dead bodies of the host of the Philistines this day to the birds of the air and to the wild beasts of the earth.”

            He also believed that he shall be victorious in the name of God, not on weapons. David said to the Philistine: “All the earth may know that there is a God in Israel,and that all this assembly may know that the Lord saves not with sword and spear; for the battle is the Lord’s and he will give you into our hand.”

            (3) The result of the battle: “When the Philistine arose and came and drew near to meet David, David ran quickly toward the battle line to meet the Philistine. And David put his hand in his bag and took out a stone, and slung it, and struck the Philistine on his forehead; the stone sank into his forehead, and he fell on his face to the ground.So David prevailed over the Philistine with a sling and with a stone, and struck the Philistine, and killed him; there was no sword in the hand of David.Then David ran and stood over the Philistine, and took his sword and drew it out of its sheath, and killed him, and cut off his head with it. When the Philistines saw that their champion was dead, they fled.”

            Since king Saul disobeyed God, He dethroned Saul. God sent Samuel to anoint David to be the king of Israel; but the people didn’t know him yet. God wanted to help Jesus to win this impossible battle to prepare people’s heart, so that they shall welcome David as Saul’s replacement. This is to demonstrate that when God chooses anyone, He shall give enough blessing so that person could fulfill his vocation.

2/ Gospel: He looked around at them with anger, grieved at their hardness of heart.

2.1/ The conflict between Jesus and the Pharisees: St. Mark consicely described this conflict in two short verses: “Again he entered the synagogue, and a man was there who had a withered hand.And they watched him, to see whether he would heal him on the Sabbath, so that they might accuse him.”

            While Jesus proclaimed the Good News and healed people in the synagogues, the Pharisees were also there. Their purpose was not to listen to his teaching, but to watch Jesus to see if he healed people on the Sabbath.

2.2/ Two different reactions:

            (1) Jesus’ reaction: When Jesus saw the man who had the withered hand, he had compassion on and he said to him: "Come here."Jesus could tell the man to come back tomorrow or to come to a place where there were no Pharisees around to watch him; but in order to teach the Pharisees to correctly understand the Sabbath, he chose to dialogue with them. He asked them: "Is it lawful on the sabbath to do good or to do harm, to save life or to kill?" But they were silent.And he looked around at them with anger, grieved at their hardness of heart, and said to the man, "Stretch out your hand." He stretched it out, and his hand was restored.

            (2) The Pharisees’ reaction: People are silent because they don’t have an answer; but these Pharisees had the answer. They knew they had to do good works even on the Sabbath and to save people; but they were afraid that if they confessed between all people, they must do what Jesus asked. They chose to be silent. Not only that, they went out, and immediately held counsel with the Herodians against him, how to destroy him.

III. APPLICATION IN LIFE:                    

            - We should obey and do what Christ has taught us. If we don’t understand his teachings, we should spent time to study. Don’t be stubborn as the Pharirees to live in our sins.

            - We can be victorious over our enemies is due to God’s power, not on our power, talent, or wisdom.

            - True religion isn’t a system with all difficult rules; but above all, it teaches us to have compassion on people’s sufferings. We should try to lighten up others’ pain and suffering.

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