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The great teacher

Chủ nhật - 28/01/2018 22:05
The New Testament writers portray Jesus as a Teacher with unbounded enthusiasm for His people.
 
A GREAT TEACHER
 
The New Testament writers portray Jesus as a Teacher with unbounded enthusiasm for His people.  
 
In today’s First Reading we hear Moses telling his listeners, “God will raise up a prophet like me from your own kin. Listen to him! This is what you asked for, afraid as you were to hear the voice of God coming down from the heavens or seeing Him reflected in a great fire” (Deut. 18: 15 – 16).
 
This prophecy was fulfilled when God came to the human race in the Person of Jesus Christ, true God and true man.
 
When the incident described in today’s Gospel occurred, Jesus had just begun His public ministry. It was the springtime of His public life and He must have felt very good about it. Springtime is a period in life that we, hopefully, all experience as a time when everything seems to be going just fine. This is a time when a person feels truly good, full of fire and pep as though he were filled with power. It is a time for being surrounded by friends and good people.
 
Indeed springtime for any human, even a human Who is God, is a grand time. Jesus visited for the first time His beloved town Capernaum, by the sea. His friends were around Him and His words seemed to be having an effect on His listeners. It was there that He performed the first of His miracles; preaching through His actions as much as through His words. He demonstrated His power and His good intentions before He talked about them. Just as a Christian must act like a Christian first and then preach, so too Jesus acted like a Savior before He told the people about salvation.
 
A great teacher! According to leading educators, the number one qualification of a good teacher is their enthusiasm for the subject being taught. The word “enthusiasm” comes from the Greek meaning “God within.” Ralph Waldo Emerson wrote, “Nothing great was ever achieved without enthusiasm.”
 
The New Testament writers portray Jesus as a Teacher with unbounded enthusiasm for His people. So much so that He literally gave His life for them. Moreover, Peter and the other disciples discovered His enthusiasm to be highly contagious to the point that when He said, “Follow Me,” they gave up everything and followed Him.
 
Through the ages, even those who do not accept Jesus as Lord and Savior recognize Him as one of the world’s greatest teachers. But for those who do accept Him as Lord and Savior, Jesus is not just a teacher par excellence, He is the course. He not only teaches the Word of God, He is the Word of God. In giving us the course on the “Mystery of Life,” Jesus gives Himself. He is not merely the “Enlightener,” He is the Light!
 
Thomas Carlyle, a famous Scottish writer and historian, once received a letter from a young man who wanted to become a teacher. “Mr. Carlyle,” he wrote, “I wish to be a teacher. Will you tell me the secret of successful teaching?” He replied, “Be what you would have your pupils be. All other teaching is unblessed mockery.” That is precisely the method of authentic Christian teaching. What Jesus teaches us to be, He is.
 
In today’s Gospel Jesus is teaching in the synagogue on the Sabbath and “they were astonished at His teaching” (Mk. 1: 22).
 
In this context and in every worship experience as followers of Christ, you and I need to ask ourselves, “Am I astonished by His teaching enough to try to imitate Him; living as He lived and loving as He loved?”
 
Today’s Responsorial Psalm read, “If today you hear His voice, harden not your hearts” (Ps. 95: 8).
 
 We are called to accept and to believe. The only way to attain true peace is by trusting in Him, relying on Him, and putting our whole life in His hands with confidence and joy. On the day we die we will be in His loving arms for all eternity.
 
I would like to challenge you to try to go out of your way to minister in a Christ-like way to one other person before this week has come and gone. Is there someone out there who is hurting in a particular way, some outcast so to speak, who has a special need that no one is responding to in a loving manner? I challenge you to be that person!
 
“Speak Lord, Your servant is listening” (1 Sam. 3: 10)! If we remain alert and attentive we will indeed become “astonished by His teaching.”

 
 
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Từ khóa: Mc 1:21-28, tn4b,

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