Scripture: 1st Reading: Col1,1-8; Resp. Psalm: Ps52,10-11; Gosp. Accl.: Lk4,18; Gospel: Lk4,38-44
The purpose of the coming of our Lord to the world was to proclaim the good news of salvation, to offer man the true way to salvation and help him to avoid eternal perdition. He came to proclaim freedom and release to those held captive as a result of sin.
These formed and still forms the essential message of the good news of salvation preached by our Lord and in His name. In today's gospel, our Lord demonstrated His power to set people free from whatever held them captive.
We are told that He healed Peter's mother-in-law and that that same evening, those who had sick people brought them to Him and He laid His hands on them and healed them all. He set free those under demonic possession.
The signs and miracles He performed were only meant as aids to the faith of the people. The real reason why He came was to preach the good news of salvation, to set the hearts of men free from the corruption of lack of knowledge of God. That was why when the people sought Him and wanted to keep Him from leaving them, He clearly said to them: "I must preach the good news of the kingdom of God to the other cities also; for I was sent for this purpose."
The work of preaching continues after His death and resurrection and Ascension into heaven. This was carried on by believers in His name. Paul and Timothy preached the word to the Colossians with great success. The word of God today teaches us that the believers in Colossae had come to have a deep faith in Christ Jesus; unflinching love for the neighbour and living hope in heavenly reward.
These are possible because of the power of the Gospel of Jesus Christ. When the word of God that is preached, that is, the gospel of salvation bears fruit and grows in the life of the individual believer, it leads to increase of faith, love and hope.
We are all called to continue the mission of Christ. That is why we are surnamed Christians, believers in Christ and bearers of Christ. The opportunities to preach the gospel are given to us in our various situations and states of life. Are we eager to make the word known? Are we ready to preach the word by the example of our lives?
Let us pray: Lord our God, the people of Colossae were commended for their faith, hope and love. Grant us your grace to be alive to our responsibilities to the gospel. Give us courage to witness to the good news by our words and our lives. Amen.
May the Living Word of God find a true dwelling place within our hearts and souls today and always.