The WORD in Other Words by Fr Bel San Luis SVD (Philippines)
Thursday 3rd Week of Lent
Jeremiah 7:23-28 Luke 11,14-23
In today‘s gospel, Jesus expels a demon from a mute person, telling us that He is more powerful than the devil. The devil does not always appear in the stereotype image of a horrible-looking half-man, half—animal with horns and forked tail.
He can appear as a well-dressed man with a pleasing personality who incites us to bribe people or sweet-talk us to swindle. The devil can also appear as a smart, charming lady that seduces a man to be unfaithful to his wife, or a dashing gentleman who seduces a woman to be unfaithful to her husband.
One form of temptation is the so—called “occasion of sin.” Take the case of a man who‘s been drinking heavily but has promised to quit the habit. On his way home, his barkada (group of friends) invites him to drink just one bottle of beer—for friendship‘s sake. “But after one bottle, ” he says, “I can‘t refuse taking a second, then a third and so on.” So instead of the concluding toast “one for the road!” it becomes “one for the canal!”
If one knows he‘s weak, he should avoid the people that would lead him to fall. Apart from a bad barkada, other occasions of sin are pornographic data like immoral shows or material on the internet or magazines as well as places of vices like bars and gambling dens.
Jesus Christ is more powerful than the devil as shown in today‘s gospel but we should also do our part to shun the devil‘s incitements. As a spiritual writer once said “To pray against temptation but not to avoid the occasion of sin is like putting your hand in the fire and pray that the hand does not get burned.” May the Lord strengthen us in our fight against all forms of evil.
The WORD in Other Words
Bible Diary 2019