Gospel of the day

Thursday June 30, 2016

Holy Gospel of Jesus Christ according to Saint Matthew 9:1-8.

After entering a boat, Jesus made the crossing, and came into his own town. And there people brought to him a paralytic lying on a stretcher. When Jesus saw their faith, he said to the paralytic, "Courage, child, your sins are forgiven." At that, some of the scribes said to themselves, "This man is blaspheming." Jesus knew what they were thinking, and said, "Why do you harbor evil thoughts? Which is easier, to say, 'Your sins are forgiven,' or to say, 'Rise and walk'? But that you may know that the Son of Man has authority on earth to forgive sins" --he then said to the paralytic, "Rise, pick up your stretcher, and go home." He rose and went home. When the crowds saw this they were struck with awe and glorified God who had given such authority to human beings.

Reflection

Commentary Saint Cyril of Alexandria
The incurable paralytic was lying on his stretcher. Having exhausted medical art he was carried by his relatives to the only true physician: the physician who comes from heaven. But when he had been set down in front of the one who could cure him it was his faith that drew the Lord's attention. To demonstrate that this faith destroyed sin, Jesus immediately said: “Your sins are forgiven.” Now perhaps you will say to me: “This man wanted to be cured of his sickness, so why did Christ make known to him the remission of his sins?” This was so you might learn that God sees a person's heart in silence, soundlessly, and beholds the paths of all the living. For, as scripture says: “Each one's ways are plain to the Lord's sight; all their paths he surveys” (Prv 5:21)... All the same, when Christ said: “Your sins are forgiven”, he left the field open to the incredulity of those standing by; the forgiveness of sins cannot be seen by eyes of flesh. So when the paralytic stood up and walked, he gave proof that Christ possesses the power of God... Who has this power? He alone, or ourselves too? We also have it along with him. He, on his part, forgives sins because he is both man and God and Lord of the Law. But we, on our side, have received this splendid and wonderful grace from him since it was his will to give this power to all humankind. For he said to the apostles: “Whatever you loose on earth shall be loosed in heaven” (Mt 18:18). And again: “Whose sins you forgive are forgiven them” (Jn 20:23).