Devotional Thoughts for Sunday Feb 2nd 2003
- The Fourth Sunday after DHANAHA (EPIPHANY)
Gospel Reading: Mark 6: 1- 6 (MKJV).
1 And He went out from there and came into His native-place. And His
disciples followed Him. 2 And when the sabbath day had come, He
to teach in the synagogue. And many hearing Him , were astonished,
saying, Where does this one get these things? And what wisdom is
which is given to him, that even such mighty works are done by his
hands? 3 Is not this the carpenter, the son of Mary, the brother of
James and Joses and Judas and Simon? And are not his sisters here
with us? And they were offended at Him.
4 But Jesus said to them, A prophet is not without honor, except in
his native-place, and among his own kin, and in his own house. 5 And
He could do no work of power there, except that He laid His hands on
few sick ones, He healed them. 6 And He marveled because of their
unbelief. And He went around the villages, in a circuit, teaching.
H.G Mathews Mar Barnabas:
Here we find our Lord's experience in his hometown. The people there
thought of Him as a mere human being like themselves and wondered
He had such wisdom and the power to do mighty works. They said, "Is
not this the carpenter, the son of Mary and brother of James and
Jesse, and Judas and Simon, and not his sisters here with us?"
of having faith in His divine powers, they took offense at Him. As a
result our Lord was not able to do any mighty works except that He
healed a few sick people. Our Lord marveled at their unbelief.
Here we find the need for faith. Only when we respond to the working
of the Holy Spirit and have faith, God can work in us. The story of
the healing of the epileptic boy is noteworthy in this connection.
father of the epileptic boy took him to the disciples of our Lord.
they could not heal him. So the father approached our Lord
you can do anything, have pity on us and help us." (St. Mark 9: 22)
Our Lord replied saying, " If you can? All these are possible to him
who believes." Then the father cried out, "I believe. Help my
unbelief." Then the boy was healed.
On another occasion, two blind men came to our Lord for getting
healed. "Do you think that I can do this?" our Lord asked. "Yes
they replied. They were then healed.
The healing of the deaf and dumb man is an example, which shows how
our Lord instilled faith before healing. Our Lord took him aside
the multitude privately, put His fingers into his ears and spat and
touched his tongue saying "Ephatha" (St. Mark 7: 31-37). He was thus
Now the question arises, how to grow in faith. The more we do the
of God, the more faith we will have in the protection and help of
Our Lord said of Himself as follows: "He who sent me is with me. He
has not left me, for I always do what is pleasing to Him." (St. John
8:29) Our Lord tells us "If you abide in me and my words abide in
whatsoever you ask and it shall be done to you." (St. John 15:7)
On the other hand, when we sin, we can not have faith in God's help.
God speaks through Prophet Isaiah as follows: "When you spread out
your hands, I will hide my face from you. Even though you make many
prayers, I will not listen. Your hands are full of blood. Wash
yourselves. Make yourselves clean. Remove the evil of your doings
before my eyes." (Isaiah 1: 15-16)
Let us therefore try to lead godly lives and have faith in God, so
that God can do mighty works in us. Amen.
HG Mathews Mar Barnabas,
Metropolitan, American Diocese
This message from His Grace Mar Barnabas is reused from
HG's sermon sent to IOIF in 2001. We are grateful to Thirumeni for this message.
- Moderators, IOIF