Your sin is forgiven
By REV. FR. SAMUEL FREDERICK
Amos 7:10-17, Mt. 9:1-8. Today's first reading presents us with a detailed report of the conversation between Amaziah, the priest of Bethel, of the northern kingdom of Israel and Amos, the prophet of God. At that time, the northern kingdom of Israel had long rebelled against God and the House of David, following their way of worship, since the first king of that northern kingdom, Jeroboam. Jeroboam led the people into sin by establishing a parallel centre of worship in Bethel, in opposition to the one and true God who ought to be worshipped. Amaziah complained to Jeroboam the second, to rule over the northern kingdom just a few decades before its ultimate destruction by the Assyrians. Amaziah as the priest of Bethel, likely representing the same pagan worship as instituted by the first king Jeroboam, found Amos, his works and prophecies to be a great interference in his domain and Amos was expelled from the northern capital, the holy city of Bethel, because he foretold the end of the kingdom. Amos performs his duty as prophet, not because he wanted to be a prophet nor because he had no means of livelihood, but because he was called to be the spokesman for God.
The contemporary time is bedevilled by such opposing power against positive and transformative change because such do challenge the opportunities of corrupt personalities to exploit people. Amaziah who benefited from such decaying circumstance preferred that the situation persist even its against the common good. We need the healing power of God to save us from corruption and greed to the detriment of people's lives. Amos proclaimed a warning and judgment of the Lord on the Israelites in the northern kingdom for their continued rebellion against God and refusal to listen to the words of the many prophets. In a similar way, Jesus is sent to correct many anomalies projected by the Pharisees and the teachers of the Law. In today's Gospel, while Jesus had pity on the paralytic, helped and healed him, the religious leaders objected to His speaking words of forgiveness because only God can forgive sins. Jesus proves His divine authority to heal not only spiritual ailments (sins), but physical ailments. Being God the Son, He has the fullness of divine authority. Jesus asked them which is easier to see it happen: the healing of spiritual illness or the healing of physical illness. Obviously people cannot see the spiritual healing, but they can see a paralysed man got up and walk, and even carry his own stretcher. Thus, if Jesus can do such visible healing, He also has the ability to perform the spiritual transformation because He is one with God.
May the light of Christ rise in our hearts, shine forth in charity to the world and His mercy on all who are sick! Amen!! Good morning, it is well!!!