Tuesday of the 4th Week of Lent
Reading: Ez. 47. 1-9,12; Gospel: Jn. 5. 1-16
The Gospel reading of the day presents to us a healing narrative where a man who was ill for thirty eight years was instantly cured by Jesus.
Though a miraculous healing takes place, this narrative does not seem to strike the right cords in our hearts. There are many odd elements within the narrative. First of all, the nature of the sickness is not made known. Secondly, when Jesus asked him whether he wants to be healed, the reply of this man was far from enthusiastic. Thirdly, this man who was healed (after 38 years) did not even care about who healed him. He did not even know the name of his healer. Fourthly, when questioned about carrying the mat, he blamed his healer rather than witnessing about his healing. Finally, after getting to know who healed him, he made it a point to inform the Jews which created animosity towards Jesus. All of this seems to paint a very negative picture of this particular man, whom Jesus Himself warned not to sin anymore in order not to let anything worse happen to him.
I think the problem of the man was that he did not know Jesus, both prior to his healing and later. He seems to exhibit a very pessimistic outlook of things tinted with selfish motives. Though he received the healing in the body, his heart and mind were far from being healed. He neither showed gratitude nor loyalty to Jesus.
At times, the same thing happens to you and me in our daily life. Problems that troubled us for years would vanish at the touch of Jesus, but we would have no clue. Sadly some people might even give the credit to luck and coincidence, blind to the intervention of God. Unless we know Jesus, we can neither recognize His presence nor witness to His love. If that man knew Jesus, his attitude, his answer and his heart would have been entirely different. His life would never have been the same again. But he seems to have gone away sulkily after his healing. Knowing Jesus would have altered everything.
Getting to know Jesus would bring about mighty changes in your life also. The Holy Scripture paves the way to know Jesus. That is why St Jerome would say “Ignorance of Scripture is ignorance of Christ”.
Do you know Jesus? Are you interested in getting to know Him better?