The Name of Jesus
The First Ever Guide to Eucharistic Consecration
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And they went into Caper´na-um; and immediately on the sabbath he entered the synagogue and taught. And they were astonished at his teaching, for he taught them as one who had authority, and not as the scribes. And immediately there was in their synagogue a man with an unclean spirit; and he cried out, “What have you to do with us, Jesus of Nazareth? Have you come to destroy us? I know who you are, the Holy One of God.” But Jesus rebuked him, saying, “Be silent, and come out of him!” And the unclean spirit, convulsing him and crying with a loud voice, came out of him. And they were all amazed, so that they questioned among themselves, saying, “What is this? A new teaching! With authority he commands even the unclean spirits, and they obey him.” And at once his fame spread everywhere throughout all the surrounding region of Galilee.
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The Name of Jesus
Welcome back to Radical and Relevant, where we are exploring the genius of Catholicism, the genius of the gospel, and learning how to apply the life and teachings of Jesus to our own lives. As we read the gospel, we're looking for a word, a phrase, or an idea to anchor our day. Today's reading is from the Gospel of Mark 1:21-28. And they went to Capernaum, and immediately on the Sabbath, he entered the synagogue and taught. And they were astonished by his teaching. For he taught them as one who had authority, and not as the scribes. And immediately, there was in the synagogue a man with an unclean spirit. And he cried out, "What have you to do with us, Jesus of Nazareth? Have you come to destroy us? I know who you are, the Holy One of God." But Jesus rebuked him, saying, "Be silent and come out of Him." And the unclean spirits convulsing Him and crying with a loud voice came out of Him. And they were all amazed, so that they questioned among themselves, saying, "What is this, a new teaching?" With authority, he commands even the unclean spirits, and they obey Him. And at once, His fame spread everywhere throughout all the surrounding region of Galilee.
Anytime a word appears more than once in a gospel reading, I always tend to pay particular attention to that. And today's word is authority. These people thought Jesus has got this extraordinary authority. And he did. But what was the source of the authority was authenticity. His authority wasn't like the scribes and the Pharisees. They had authority because they'd been given positions in this world. Jesus' authority didn't come from position. It came from authenticity. It came from who he was, true man, true God. And so it was a different kind of authority. It was an authority that the people had never seen before because it was so authentic. And so I think that's interesting.
But the idea that really struck me in today's reading was when the people, after Jesus has cast out this unclean spirit, the people say, "What is this, a new teaching?" And it was. And what is the new teaching? The teaching is that there's power in Jesus and even in the name Jesus. I saw an exorcist interviewed sometime last year. And he was talking about how the power of just using the name Jesus is incredible. And that is part of the new teaching, is that there is a power in Jesus. Jesus has a unique power. And even using His name in our lives has real power. And obviously abusing His name or misusing His name takes us very, very much in the other direction. And that has become very commonplace in our lives today. So as we go through our day today, let's think about what place does the name of Jesus, the very, very powerful name of Jesus, have in our lives. God bless you. Have a great day. Remember, be bold and be Catholic.