3/16/2023 (Thursday) Today’s gospel reading: Luke 11:14-23
14 Jesus was driving out a demon that was mute, and when the demon had gone out, the mute man spoke and the crowds were amazed.
15 Some of them said, “By the power of Beelzebul, the prince of demons, he drives out demons.”
16 Others, to test him, asked him for a sign from heaven.
17 But he knew their thoughts and said to them, “Every kingdom divided against itself will be laid waste and house will fall against house.
18 And if Satan is divided against himself, how will his kingdom stand? For you say that it is by Beelzebul that I drive out demons.
19 If I, then, drive out demons by Beelzebul, by whom do your own people drive them out? Therefore they will be your judges.
20 But if it is by the finger of God that I drive out demons, then the Kingdom of God has come upon you.
21 When a strong man fully armed guards his palace, his possessions are safe.
22 But when one stronger than he attacks and overcomes him, he takes away the armour on which he relied and distributes the spoils.
23 Whoever is not with me is against me, and whoever does not gather with me scatters.”
3/16/2023 (Thursday) Today’s gospel reflection: Luke 11:14-23
Jesus was incarnated to establish His Kingdom and one of the most visible signs of its establishment is the casting out the its enemy – the devil. It means that with Jesus as king, the devil has no more power over people who believe in Him. The thief, meaning the devil, comes only to steal and kill and destroy; Jesus have come that we may have life, and have it to the full (John 10:10). Look at the mute in the gospel reading above, the devil took away his freedom to speak. When Jesus drove away the evil spirit, the freedom to talk was returned.
Although the Kingdom of God has already been established, its full implementation is not yet complete. This is because a lot of people still refuse or even oppose its completion. The effect is palpable. The world today is mired in all sorts of problems especially division and poverty. Unless all of us accept Jesus to rule over our lives, the devil has its leeway to keep on stealing our freedom and destroying our happiness.
Still, we believe that the devil is already being defeated. As we can read in the gospel above, Jesus is the guard who is stronger than the thief. With full confidence in Jesus’ power, we the believers can continue to wait, knowing that it is only a matter of time when the enemy will be totally annihilated in the fullness of time. In the meantime, we stand on guard, united in faith and prayer, constantly seeking to do the will of God and helping one another as the Body of Christ. This is our armor against the enemy and we believe, we shall overcome his thievery and destruction.