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Home » Daily Gospel, Daily Readings, Old Testament, Prophets

Forgiveness and Faith

Submitted by on Monday, 6 December 2010No Comment


  • Reading I:  Isaiah 35:1-10
  • Responsorial Psalm: Psalm 85:9ab and 10, 11-12, 13-14
  • Gospel Reading: Luke 5:17-26

The New Exodus

Isaiah 35 is a hymn about Israel’s deliverance from exile. It is a hymn celebrating a new exodus. The prophet gives a picture of the desert teeming with life as the exiles make their way back home (v. 10). The hymn comes at the end of a series of oracles against Assyria (33:1-16) and Edom (34:1-17) which is broken up by an oracle about Zion’s restoration (33:17-24). The hymn highlights Isaiah’s visions regarding the restoration of Israel.

Paralysis and Sin

The gospel reading is about Jesus healing a paralytic within a controversy regarding His authority to forgive sins. The story gives us an example of the way grace is purveyed to one because of the faith of others. In this case, the paralytic receives forgiveness of sins because of the faith of those who brought him to Jesus. What Jesus noticed about the men who brought the paralytic is that their faith was creative: they did not allow the crowd blocking the path to Jesus to be a hindrance to their intention. Their creative faith was rewarded when Jesus healed the paralytic they brought with them.

Guidelines for Actualization

God has acted through Jesus Christ. It is through the Death and Resurrection of Jesus that forgiveness has been given to all. Even our pilgrimage through History towards the New Jerusalem has been made possible by His own exodus (Luke 9:31). He who has opened for us the Way back to our homeland — Augustine would say — has become for us "The Way".

Advent is also time for focusing on our true homeland. The way to it is Christ Himself, "the Way, the Truth and the Life". What are you doing this Advent to keep yourself focused on the goal of our pilgrimage?

Isaiah 35:1-10
View in: NAB NIV KJV NJB Vulg LXX Hebrew
1The land that was desolate and impassable shall be glad, and the wilderness shall rejoice, and shall flourish like the lily.
2It shall bud forth and blossom, and shall rejoice with joy and praise: the glory of Libanus is given to it: the beauty of Carmel, and Saron, they shall see the glory of the Lord, and the beauty of our God.
3Strengthen ye the feeble hands, and confirm the weak knees.
4Say to the fainthearted: Take courage, and fear not: behold your God will bring the revenge of recompense: God himself will come and will save you.
5Then shall the eyes of the blind be opened, and the ears of the deaf shall be unstopped.
6Then shall the lame man leap as a hart, and the tongue of the dumb shall be free: for waters are broken out in the desert, and streams in the wilderness.
7And that which was dry land, shall become a pool, and the thirsty land springs of water. In the dens where dragons dwell before, shall rise up the verdure of the reed and the bulrush.
8And a path and a way shall be there, and it shall be called the holy way: the unclean shall not pass over it, and this shall be unto you a straight way, so that fools shall not err therein.
9No lion shall be there, nor shall any mischievous beast go up by it, nor be found there: but they shall walk there that shall be delivered.
10And the redeemed of the Lord shall return, and shall come into Sion with praise, and everlasting joy shall be upon their heads: they shall obtain joy and gladness, and sorrow and mourning shall flee away.
Psalm 85:9
View in: NAB NIV KJV NJB Vulg LXX Hebrew
9I will hear what the Lord God will speak in me: for he will speak peace unto his people: And unto his saints: and unto them that are converted to the heart.
Luke 5:17-26
View in: NAB NIV KJV NJB Vulg Greek
17And it came to pass on a certain day, as he sat teaching, that there were also Pharisees and doctors of the law sitting by, that were come out of every town of Galilee, and Judea and Jerusalem: and the power of the Lord was to heal them.
18And behold, men brought in a bed a man, who had the palsy: and they sought means to bring him in, and to lay him before him.
19And when they could not find by what way they might bring him in, because of the multitude, they went up upon the roof, and let him down through the tiles with his bed into the midst before Jesus.
20Whose faith when he saw, he said: Man, thy sins are forgiven thee.
21And the scribes and Pharisees began to think, saying: Who is this who speaketh blasphemies? Who can forgive sins, but God alone?
22And when Jesus knew their thoughts, answering, he said to them: What is it you think in your hearts?
23Which is easier to say, Thy sins are forgiven thee; or to say, Arise and walk?
24But that you may know that the Son of man hath power on earth to forgive sins, (he saith to the sick of the palsy,) I say to thee, Arise, take up thy bed, and go into thy house.
25And immediately rising up before them, he took up the bed on which he lay; and he went away to his own house, glorifying God.
26And all were astonished; and they glorified God. And they were filled with fear, saying: We have seen wonderful things today.
Luke 9:31
View in: NAB NIV KJV NJB Vulg Greek
31Appearing in majesty. And they spoke of his decease that he should accomplish in Jerusalem.

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