While Jesus was teaching in the temple, he said, “How can the scribes say that the Messiah is the son of David? David himself, by the Holy Spirit, declared,
‘The Lord said to my Lord,
“Sit at my right hand, until I put your enemies under your feet.”’
David himself calls him Lord; so how can he be his son?” And the large crowd was listening to him with delight.
New Revised Standard Version, copyright 1989, by the National Council of the Churches of Christ in the United States of America. Used by permission. All rights reserved. USCCB approved.
Today’s Gospel is another instance of Jesus being at odds with the religious teachers his day. Once again we see Jesus challenging people who might consider themselves religiously or spiritually “in the know.” Does our “knowledge” block us from seeing Jesus as Jesus wants to be seen?
As a trial lawyer, I have seen many reasons why litigants or jurors might reject a relevant fact. Prejudice. Self-interest. Fear of change. Loss of money or position. And that ever-present reason: the confirmation bias–our tendency to readily accept evidence that confirms what we already think, but to resist evidence that challenges our existing beliefs.
We may not be able to look into the hearts of the scribes and understand why they rejected the fact that Jesus is the Messiah, but we can look into our own hearts. Can we put aside our current image of God, and consider a new image of God, “with delight”? In this moment, are we open to how the Spirit may want to renew not only our image of God, but also our image of every other person as one who matters to God as much as we do?
—Tim Reuland serves on the Board of Directors of the Bellarmine Jesuit Retreat House in Barrington, IL, and is an intern in Bellarmine’s training program for spiritual directors.
Come Holy Spirit,
fill the hearts of your faithful,
kindle in them the fire of your love.
Send forth your Spirit and they shall be created.
And you shall renew the face of the earth.
—Traditional prayerPlease share the Good Word with your friends!