Free Republic
Browse · Search
Religion
Topics · Post Article

To: All

From: Mark 10:46-52


The Blind Man of Jericho



[46] And they (Jesus and His disciples) came to Jericho; and as He was
leaving Jericho with His disciples and a great multitude, Bartimaeus, a
blind beggar, the son of Timaeus, was sitting by the roadside. [47] And
when he heard that it was Jesus of Nazareth, he began to cry out and
say, "Jesus, Son of David, have mercy on me!: [48] And many rebuked
him, telling him to be silent; but he cried out all the more, "Son of
David, have mercy on me!" [49] And Jesus stopped and said, "Call him."
And they called the blind man, saying to him, "Take heart; rise, He is
calling you." [50] And throwing off his mantle he sprang up and came to
Jesus. [51] And Jesus said to him, "What do you want Me to do for
you?" And the blind man said to Him, "Master, let me receive my
sight." [52] And Jesus said to him, "Go your way; your faith has made
you well." And immediately he received his sight and followed him on
the way.




Commentary:


46-52. "Hearing the commotion the crowd was making, the blind man asks,
`What is happening?' They told him, `It is Jesus of Nazareth.' At
this his soul was so fired with faith in Christ that he cried out,
`Jesus, Son of David, have mercy on me!'


"Don't you feel the same urge to cry out? You who are also waiting at
the side of the way, of this highway of life that is so very short?
You who need more light, you who need more grace to make up your mind
to seek holiness? Don't you feel an urgent need to cry out, `Jesus,
Son of David, have mercy on me'? What a beautiful aspiration for you
to repeat again and again!...


"`Many rebuked him, telling him to be silent.' As people have done to
you, when you sensed that Jesus was passing your way. Your heart beat
faster and you too began to cry out, prompted by an intimate longing.
Then your friends, the need to do the done thing, the easy life, your
surroundings, all conspired to tell you: `Keep quiet, don't cry out.
Who are you to be calling Jesus? Don't bother Him.'


"But poor Bartimaeus would not listen to them. He cried out all the
more: `Son of David, have mercy on me.' Our Lord, who had heard him
right from the beginning, let him persevere in his prayer. He does the
same with you. Jesus hears our cries from the very first, but he
waits. He wants us to be convinced that we need Him. He wants us to
beseech Him, to persist, like the blind man waiting by the road from
Jericho. `Let us imitate him. Even if God does not immediately give
us what we ask, even if many people try to put us off our prayers, let
us still go on praying' (St. John Chrysostom, "Hom. on St. Matthew",
66).


"`And Jesus stopped, and told them to call Him.' Some of the better
people in the crowd turned to the blind man and said, `Take heart;
rise, He is calling you.' Here you have the Christian vocation! But
God does not call only once. Bear in mind that our Lord is seeking us
at every moment: get up, He tells us, put aside your indolence, your
easy life, your petty selfishness, your silly little problems. Get up
from the ground, where you are lying prostrate and shapeless. Acquire
height, weight and volume, and a supernatural outlook.


"And throwing off his mantle the man sprang up and came to Jesus. He
threw off his mantle! I don't know if you have ever lived through a
war, but many years ago I had occasion to visit a battlefield shortly
after an engagement. There strewn all over the ground, were
greatcoats, water bottles, haversacks stuffed with family souvenirs,
letters, photographs of loved ones...which belonged, moreover, not to
the vanquished but to the victors! All these items had become
superfluous in the bid to race forward and leap over the enemy
defenses. Just as happened to Bartimaeus, as he raced towards Christ.


"Never forget that Christ cannot be reached without sacrifice. We have
to get rid of everything that gets in the way--greatcoat, haversack,
water bottle. You have to do the same in this battle for the glory of
God, in this struggle of love and peace by which we are trying to
spread Christ's Kingdom. In order to serve the Church, the Pope and
all souls, you must be ready to give up everything superfluous....


"And now begins a dialogue with God, a marvelous dialogue that moves us
and sets our hearts on fire, for you and I are now Bartimaeus. Christ,
who is God, begins to speak and asks, `Quid tibi vis faciam?' `What do
you want Me to do for you?' The blind man answers. `Lord, that I may
see.' How utterly logical! How about yourself, can you really see?
Haven't you too experienced at times what happened to the blind man of
Jericho? I can never forget how, when meditating on this passage many
years back, and realizing that Jesus was expecting something of me,
though I myself did not know what it was, I made up my own aspirations:
`Lord, what is it You want! What are You asking of me'? I had a
feeling that He wanted me to take on something new and the cry,
`Rabboni, ut videam', `Master, that I may see,' moved me to beseech
Christ again and again, `Lord, whatever it is that You wish, let it be
done.'


"Pray with me now to our Lord: `doce me facere voluntatem tuam, quia
Deus meus es tu" (Psalm 142:10) (`teach me to do Thy will, for You art
my God'). In short, our lips should express a true desire on our part
to correspond effectively to our Creator's promptings, striving to
follow out His plans with unshakeable faith, being fully convinced that
He cannot fail us....


"But let us go back to the scene outside Jericho. It is now to you
that Christ is speaking. He asks you, `What do you want Me to do for
you?' `Master, let me receive my sight.' Then Jesus answers, `Go your
way. Your faith has made you well.' And immediately he received his
sight and followed Him on His way." Following Jesus on His way. You
have understood what our Lord was asking to from you and you have
decided to accompany Him on His way. You are trying to walk in His
footsteps, to clothe yourself in Christ's clothing, to be Christ
Himself: well, your faith, your faith in the light our Lord is giving
you, must be both operative and full of sacrifice. Don't fool
yourself. Don't think you are going to find new ways. The faith He
demands of us is as I have said. We must keep in step with Him,
working generously and at the same time uprooting and getting rid of
everything that gets in the way" ([St] J. Escriva, "Friends of God", 195-198).



Source: "The Navarre Bible: Text and Commentaries". Biblical text
taken from the Revised Standard Version and New Vulgate. Commentaries
made by members of the Faculty of Theology of the University of
Navarre, Spain. Published by Four Courts Press, Kill Lane, Blackrock,
Co. Dublin, Ireland.


4 posted on 05/26/2005 6:34:51 AM PDT by Salvation (†With God all things are possible.†)
[ Post Reply | Private Reply | To 3 | View Replies ]


To: All
St.Philip Neri at the High Altar
5 posted on 05/26/2005 6:37:07 AM PDT by Salvation (†With God all things are possible.†)
[ Post Reply | Private Reply | To 4 | View Replies ]

Free Republic
Browse · Search
Religion
Topics · Post Article


FreeRepublic, LLC, PO BOX 9771, FRESNO, CA 93794
FreeRepublic.com is powered by software copyright 2000-2008 John Robinson