The Holy Gospel according to Luke (11:14-23)
Jesus was driving out a demon that was mute, and when the demon had gone out, the mute man spoke and the crowds were amazed. Some of them said, “By the power of Beelzebul, the prince of demons, he drives out demons.” Others, to test him, asked him for a sign from heaven. But he knew their thoughts and said to them, “Every kingdom divided against itself will be laid waste and house will fall against house. And if Satan is divided against himself, how will his kingdom stand? For you say that it is by Beelzebul that I drive out demons. If I, then, drive out demons by Beelzebul, by whom do your own people drive them out? Therefore they will be your judges. But if it is by the finger of God that I drive out demons, then the Kingdom of God has come upon you. When a strong man fully armed guards his palace, his possessions are safe. But when one stronger than he attacks and overcomes him, he takes away the armor on which he relied and distributes the spoils. Whoever is not with me is against me, and whoever does not gather with me scatters.”
Reflection: Spiritual warfare is real. Anyone who has ever felt the pull of temptation can attest to it.
Today’s gospel reminds us of a reality that happens all the time within us. That is the war between good and evil. Every now and then, each of us is confronted with a choice whether to follow the dictate of satan or the dictate of the Holy Spirit. Every time we commit sin, we have followed the devil and therefore we displease God.
Yet we are not at all hopeless. We have the great exorcist in Jesus and with all the angels who guard us when we call them, we are safe. We have to believe in the power of God. Under His authority, the devil cannot possess us. Still, the devil is working 24 hours each day to lure us to his side. Let us put on the full armor of God to defeat the devil’s schemes (Ephesians 6:10-18).
It is the devil’s plan to put division within us and between us and God. And the division that we see in the world is just a reflection of this division within us. That is why it is very critical to always pray for wholeness within ourselves. For when we are made whole then we can truly work for peace and unity in this world. This happens only when we abide in Jesus.
Action of the Day: What weapons do you have in your arsenal for the spiritual battle? Gather them together and use them: pray the Rosary, read Holy Scripture, use and keep Holy Water in your home – live an ordered life according to God’s plan for you, fight temptation, identify the enemy and ask for God’s help, fight desolation and laziness, fast, give alms, talk with your spiritual director, have recourse to the sacramentals, call upon St. Michael the Arcangel and Our Blessed Mother and St.Joseph.