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(Part 9)


October 28, 2012
Today’s gospel: Mark 10:46-52

We are familiar with the saying: “To see is to believe.” In today’s gospel, the lesson is: “to believe is to see.”

The blind man Bartimaeus had faith in Jesus. When he heard Jesus was there, he cried out to him, asking for his pity. Even when others rebuked him and told him to be silent, he all the more called out to Jesus. And he was confident that Jesus could heal him of his blindness. He had faith. Jesus then restored his sight, saying: “Go your way; your faith has saved you.” (Mk 10:52a).

Many people in the world have eyes but cannot see and are blind.

  • They cannot see the inherent dignity of people as children of God, and so treat women as sex objects or the poor as trash.
  • They cannot see the beauty of a holy sexual relationship between a husband and a wife, and so have casual non-committed sex.
  • They cannot see God’s original plan for His creation, and so push for contraception, divorce, same-sex marriage, and population control.
  • They cannot see the tremendous blessing that a child is, and so they abort the unborn.

Now Jesus came into the world to bring “recovery of sight to the blind” (Lk 4:18d). When we put our faith in him, we are saved, and our sight is restored. We begin to see things according to the ways and plan of God. And our lives are totally transformed. Our old worldly ways are overturned. We move from blindness to sight, from darkness to light, from death to life.

When we BE.LI.EV.E, then faith works wonders. Things that are wrong in the world do not have to remain as they are. There can be radical 180-degree changes.

  • From death in sin to life in Christ.
  • From the ways of the world to the ways of the Lord.
  • From the culture of death to the culture of life.
  • From condemnation and hell to salvation and heaven.

Now for many more to have faith, they need to be evangelized. When Bartimaeus was crying out to Jesus, Jesus did not call him directly but rather told others to call him. “So they called the blind man, saying to him, ‘Take courage; get up, he is calling you.’” (Mk 10:49b). God works through human instruments. Today Jesus is telling us to proclaim the good news to others, so that they might come to him and be saved.

For God to be able to use us, for us to become effective evangelizers, we must respond like Bartimaeus when we ourselves are called. When called, Bartimaeus “threw aside his cloak, sprang up, and came to Jesus.” (Mk 10:50). We set aside everything, we quickly and vigorously respond to the call, and we come to Jesus. We BE.LI.EV.E. We become a friend of Jesus, we live the way of Jesus, and we evangelize in the name of Jesus.

Bartimaeus “received his sight and followed him on the way.” (Mk 10:52b). The world that is in darkness needs to be freed so that people can see the beauty of God’s plan and His creation. People do not need to live miserable lives, being blind and sitting “by the roadside begging.” (Mk 10:46c). They do not need to be in bondage to the evil one who prevents them from crying out to Jesus. Jesus wants to save them and let them see.

And Jesus gives us the great privilege of being used by him to bring people to himself. Even now Jesus tells us, “Call him.” (Mk 10:49a).

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