The Healer

After Jesus left the synagogue, he entered the house of Simon.
Simon’s mother-in-law was afflicted with a severe fever,
and they interceded with him about her.
He stood over her, rebuked the fever, and it left her.
She got up immediately and waited on them.

At sunset, all who had people sick with various diseases brought them to him.
He laid his hands on each of them and cured them.
And demons also came out from many, shouting, “You are the Son of God.”
But he rebuked them and did not allow them to speak
because they knew that he was the Christ.

At daybreak, Jesus left and went to a deserted place.
The crowds went looking for him, and when they came to him,
they tried to prevent him from leaving them.
But he said to them, “To the other towns also
I must proclaim the good news of the Kingdom of God,
because for this purpose I have been sent.”
And he was preaching in the synagogues of Judea.
(Luke 4:38-44)

Scripture Study

4:38 The house of Simon: because of Luke’s arrangement of material, the reader has not yet been introduced to Simon (cf. Mk 1:16–18, 29–31). Situated as it is before the call of Simon (Lk 5:1–11), it helps the reader to understand Simon’s eagerness to do what Jesus says (Lk 5:5) and to follow him (Lk 5:11).

4:41 They knew that he was the Messiah: that is, the Christ.

4:42 They tried to prevent him from leaving them: the reaction of these strangers in Capernaum is presented in contrast to the reactions of those in his hometown who rejected him (Lk 4:28–30).

4:44 In the synagogues of Judea: instead of Judea, which is the best reading of the manuscript tradition, the Byzantine text tradition and other manuscripts read “Galilee,” a reading that harmonizes Luke with Mt 4:23 and Mk 1:39. Up to this point Luke has spoken only of a ministry of Jesus in Galilee. Luke may be using Judea to refer to the land of Israel, the territory of the Jews, and not to a specific portion of it.

Scripture Reflection

Friends, in our Gospel we see Jesus in action. He is always hurrying from place to place, on the go. Today Luke gives us a sort of “day in the life” of Jesus. And it is quite a day! Our Gospel opens just after the dramatic expulsion of a demon in the Capernaum synagogue. And after entering the house of Simon, Jesus cures Peter’s mother-in-law and then the entire town comes to his door. He spends the whole evening curing presumably hundreds who were variously afflicted.

In the 18th, 19th and 20th centuries, in an attempt to make Jesus more palatable to rationalists and “realists,” theologians put great stress on Jesus’ preaching, especially his ethical teaching.

But this is not the Jesus that Luke presents. Rather, he is a healer. Soter, rendered in Latin as Salvator, which just means “the bearer of the salus” or health. Jesus is portrayed as a healer, a savior. In him, divinity and humanity have come together; in him, the divine life and divine power are breaking through. God’s deepest intentions for his beloved creatures appears—what God plans for us in the Kingdom to come is now historically anticipated.

– Bishop Robert Barron

May the virtues of faith, hope, and love go with you today – DV.