Trusting in the Authority of the Church

Thursday, January 19, 2017

Readings for Thursday of the Second Week of Ordinary Time

Saints for Today

And whenever unclean spirits saw him they would fall down before him and shout, “You are the Son of God.” He warned them sternly not to make him known. Mark 3:12

In this passage, Jesus rebukes the unclean spirits and commands that they refrain from making Him known to others. Why does He do this?

In this passage, Jesus commands the unclean spirits to remain silent because their testimony to the truth of who Jesus is cannot be trusted. They cannot be trusted. The key thing to understand here is that the demons often deceive others by speaking some truth in a slightly erroneous way. They mix the truth with error. Therefore, they are not worthy of speaking any truth about Jesus.

This should give us insight into the proclamation of the Gospel in general. There are many whom we hear preach the Gospel, but not everything we hear or read is fully trustworthy. There are countless opinions, advice givers, and preachers in our world today. Sometimes the preacher will say something quite true but then will knowingly or unknowingly mix that truth with small errors. This does great damage and leads many astray.

So the first thing we should take from this passage is that we must always listen carefully to what is preached and try to discern whether or not what is said is fully in union with what Jesus has revealed. This is the main reason we should always rely upon the preaching of Jesus as it is revealed through our Church. Jesus guarantees that His truth is spoken through His Church. Therefore, the Catechism of the Catholic Church, the lives of the saints, and the wisdom of the Holy Father and bishops must always be used as a basis for all we listen to and preach ourselves.

Reflect, today, upon how completely you trust our Church. Sure, our Church is filled with sinners; we are all sinners. But our Church is also filled with the fullness of the truth and you must enter into a deep trust of all that Jesus has and continues to reveal to you through His Church. Offer a prayer of gratitude this day for the teaching authority of the Church and recommit yourself to a full acceptance of that authority.

 

Lord, I thank You for the gift of Your Church. Today, I especially thank You for the gift of the clear and authoritative teaching that comes to me through the Church. May I always trust in this authority and offer a full submission of my mind and will to all that You have revealed, especially through our Holy Father and the saints. Jesus, I trust in You.

 

See also: Daily Reflection on Divine Mercy