Ephphatha, be Opened
By REV. FR. SAMUEL FREDERICK
1 Kgs 11:29-32.12:19, Mk 7:31-37. Today’s first reading continues the account of decline of Solomon’s kingdom and the separation of the ten tribes of Israel from the two tribes ruled by Solomon’s descendants. All that will be left under the rule of Solomon’s sons will be his own tribe of Judah and the tribe of Benjamin. The Psalmist reinforces the idea that it was because of Solomon’s idolatrous behaviour that the kingdom was divided. It also emphasises that God will restore the power to His chosen people and displace the enemies if the people and their leaders put their faith only in the Lord and do what God asks of them.
In today’s Gospel, Jesus continues His missionary journey into the Gentile area known as the Decapolis, where He encounters a deaf mute. The people of the area have obviously heard about Jesus and His healing power and wanted Jesus to heal the deaf mute. Jesus drew from the assembled crowd and dramatically performed a sacrametal actions, of putting His fingers in the man’s ear; spitting, touching his tongue, moaning and commanding “Ephphatha - Be opened.” The healings of Jesus give a foretaste of universal salvation, as already hinted in the story of the Syro-Phoenician woman. Full of spontaneous joy, the cured man forgot the non-disclosure ban but enthusiastically proclaimed what Jesus has done for him.
May the Lord protect us from all evil, be for us the road we travel and the peaceful reward at the end of our journey in life! Amen!! Have a pleasant day!!!