Are you in need of a Physician? GOD HEALING OUR SICKNESSES Aaron Joseph Hackett | New Testament reflection | 02/07/2020
When we are sick, we don’t feel our best. We struggle with our daily tasks and it becomes quite difficult to handle things. When we are sick, every task becomes a great struggle. We then lose time; we lose our focus and we get off track. We go to someone who is well-versed in the experiences of the world, we go to someone that can help fix our brokenness. We go to a Doctor. We trust this person because of the extensive study and knowledge of the world. But what happens if we have a sickness that science can’t fix? Because we have a Supreme being who is outside of time and reality, God is the one who formed us and knows us. He knows when things are outside of our realities and he can fix the disorders in our lives.
Matthew Chapter 8:29-34 “And behold, they cried out, “What have you to do with us, O Son of God? Have you come here to torment us before the time?” Now a herd of many swine was feeding at some distance from them. And the demons begged him, “If you cast us out, send us away into the herd of swine.” And he said to them, “Go.” So they came out and went into the swine; and behold, the whole herd rushed down the steep bank into the sea, and perished in the waters. The herdsmen fled, and going into the city they told everything, and what had happened to the demoniacs. And behold, all the city came out to meet Jesus; and when they saw him, they begged him to leave their neighborhood.” God performed a great miracle here and you would think that the village would be happy that God showed mercy on these men that were possessed by devils. But what happens instead? They ask Jesus to leave. Why? First, we will look at these men in the tombs. It’s not revealed to us how these men have met these demons, but we do know that they were tormenting them. Demons can enter many ways. The main way they possess a person is by invitation. The invitation can come from participation in a ritual (Ouija board, witchcraft, tarot cards readers, fortune tellers, etc.) Demons are legalists. If you open the door for them, they will come in. And when you are in mortal sin, they are saying to God…” See Person A invited us in, and we have a right to be here”. If you listen to the talks of Fr. Chad Ripperger FSSP link to video here, https://www.youtube.com/watch?v=Tq-ppsQ9zkA they seek the negative energies in order to feed off and keep going. The demons knew who Jesus was and they started crying out, because Jesus was already casting them out. The devils know that in the end, they will lose when Jesus returns to the earth at the end of time, but until then, they want to inhabit bodies of people because they desire to cause great harm to mankind.
The fact that the demons went into the herd of pigs is something that is linked to uncleanness that is known to both the Jews and the Muslims. Pigs are animals by nature, filthy animals that eat anything. They are careless beings and they do nothing for themselves but lay around and get covered in so much filth. When we live a life of sinfulness, don’t pray to God, treat others badly, we literally become like these unclean creatures. We show our “filth” before the eyes of God. How can Jesus embrace us, if we are covered in the dirt of sin and uncleanliness? No matter how much God loves us, he can’t get close to us, because there is a barrier between us and the Master. Every sin is a violation against the laws of God. So, until reparation is made, God who permits all things to happen, may allow a demon to possess you. It’s not because God wants to torture you or make you suffer, but because of his divine justice, you’re really getting what you’re asking for. When the pigs go off the edge and drown, the villagers in the field go into the town and tell everyone what happens. My opinion on why they wanted Jesus to leave, is because they themselves were living “unclean” lives. Maybe they are a hub of evil. (Prostitution, drunkenness, idolatry etc., and because Jesus is in their mist, evil can’t stand the light. Because he is the Light of God in the world, their souls have such a strain that it then becomes unbearable to be in the presence of God. Nothing unclean can be in the presence of God, absolutely nothing.
From the teaching of the Catechism of the Catholic Church, CCC 1503 states “Christ’s compassion toward the sick and his many healings of every kind of infirmity are a resplendent sign that “God has visited his people” and that the Kingdom of God is close at hand. Jesus has the power not only to heal, but also to forgive sins; he has come to heal the whole man, soul and body; he is the physician the sick have need of. His compassion toward all who suffer goes so far that he identifies himself with them: “I was sick and you visited me.” His preferential love for the sick has not ceased through the centuries to draw the very special attention of Christians toward all those who suffer in body and soul. It is the source of tireless efforts to comfort them.” Jesus is sent on the earth to bring the good news. But along with the Good News, he is also showing the mercy of the creator God. When someone is hungry and asks for bread and you tell them I’ll pray for you, it doesn’t fulfill the need of the person. It’s fine to pray for them, but it doesn’t take away the hunger. God, who is the source of life, knows the needs of each person. He takes on a much more personal role and bring what you need to you. God created us in his image as it is explained in the book of Genesis. So, by Jesus performing all these miracles, it is God’s mercy being shown to the creation that he loves.
God has an appointed assistant who helps in his mission on earth. God doesn’t need anyone other than himself to heal men. But because he wants us to learn about the example of “complete obedience” and “Trust in his ways,” The Blessed Virgin Mary is the one that God has destined to “crush the head of the serpent” Genesis Chapter 3 Verse 15. I would consider her the RN (Registered Nurse). She is given these special gifts from Almighty God himself, she has help for those in need of healing. From the reading of “The secret of the Rosary ” by St. Louis De Montfort gives testimony in his writing on the 33rd Rose about The Spiritual father of my Order, St. Dominic De Guzman performing an exorcism of an Albigensian Heretic. This man was possessed by fifteen thousand demons, because he attacked all fifteen mysteries of the Rosary. They told St, Dominic that preaching the Holy Rosary puts “fear and horror “into the very depths of hell and they hated him because of the souls that took from them because of this devotion. “He puts the rosary around the man’s neck and he asked the devils to tell him, who of all the saints in heaven, was the one they feared the most, and who should therefore be the most loved and revered by men.” They yelled and screamed and refused to tell him anything. St. Dominic prayed this prayer “Oh most worthy Mother of Wisdom, I am praying for the people assembled here who have already learned how to say the Angelic Salutation properly. Please, I beg of you, force your enemies to proclaim the whole truth and nothing but the truth about this, here and now, before the multitude.” Before St. Dominic finished this prayer, he saw the Blessed Virgin Mary, surrounded by a multitude of angels. The Blessed Mother struck the possessed man with a golden rod that she held and said: “Answer my servant Dominic at once” The devils started screaming “Oh you are our enemy, our downfall and our destruction, why have you come from heaven just to torture us so grievously? O Advocate of sinners, you who snatch them from the very jaws of hell, you who are the very sure path to heaven, must we, in spite of ourselves, tell the whole truth and confess before everyone who it is who is the cause of our shame and our ruin? “We fear her more than all the other saints in heaven together and we have no success with her faithful servants. Many Christians who call upon her when they are at the hour of death and who really ought to be damned according to our ordinary standards are saved by her intercession.” St. Dominic asked the crowd to say the Rosary very slowly and with great devotion. The devils were expelled and the heretic was free of all of them. The Blessed Mother blessed the company assembled there and all were filled with Joy. St. Dominic was a Priest. So, he had the Authority of Jesus acting through him because of the Holy Orders that was given to him by the Bishop.
Another example of God using someone to do his will to heal someone is St, Anthony of Egypt. In chapter 12, pg 59 from the book “St. Anthony of the Desert,” written by Bishop St. Athanasius. A captain of Martiniaus came into the desert looking for St. Anthony. His daughter was set by a demon. He banged on his door and asked him to come and pray to God for the child. Anthony didn’t open the door, but leaned over and said “Man, why do you cry to me? I am a man like yourself. But if you trust in Christ whom I serve, go, and as you trust, so pray to God, and it shall be done” And he at once believing and calling on Christ, went away with his daughter made clean from the demon. Who healed the daughter? It was God who healed the daughter. Once the man “Believed” in God to show mercy on him, was enough faith to heal the possessed girl. Anthony, I believed pray for the man to have the grace to Trust in the Mercy of God. Anthony has no powers. It is God who uses us as “instruments” to do his will and to show how God is not restricted in time and space. He could use me if he wanted to, if I prayed on behalf of a family member for a child and her needed physical healing. God heals based on his Divine Providence, if it is in accordance with his will and if it will help the soul in need build their faith. We must always remember that we must trust in God and ask for “The faith of a mustard seed”. Then and only then, God willing, he will hear our petitions for the ones who are ill and heal them. CCC 549 “By freeing some individuals from the earthly evils of hunger, injustice, illness and death, Jesus performed messianic signs. Nevertheless he did not come to abolish all evils here below, but to free men from the gravest slavery, sin, which thwarts them in their vocation as God’s sons and causes all forms of human bondage.” Sin is the main cause of our “sicknesses”. God knows what is best for us. Sometimes God will not heal certain things. He does this because, if we choose to go along with his will, we can use our ailments to help us grow closer to God, he can use our suffering to help someone else who is suffering. A conversion of a hardened sinner. The biggest challenges come from trusting in God. We naturally want our way. But if we truly want to do the will of God, then we must “die to ourselves” and surrender our will to God. He can perfect our brokenness and his main goal is to heal the soul. If he heals the body, then those are graces that only he can give. We don’t merit anything. Let us finish this meditation with a prayer.
Almighty and ever-living God, you have shown us that you love your creation so much, you sent your Son, Jesus to the earth to teach us your Holy Will. Heal our sinfulness first and make us clean before you, so that by your mercy, healing our filth and make us white as snow. Blessed Mother, you gave us the tool that we need to meditate on the Life, Death and Resurrection of your Son Jesus to St. Dominic de Guzman. May we petition you and if it agrees with your Son, heal us and bring us to fulness of health. Thank you for showing the example of St. Anthony of Egypt, that with fasting and praying, we can beg God for the grace of Faith and by your Holy Will be made whole and clean. May you heal our sickness and bring us to fullness of life, we ask this in Christ our Lord. Amen!
God Bless you,
Aaron Joseph Hackett