Wednesday, January 20, 2010

Bible Commentary on Unclean Spirits

This is why I read Bible Commentaries.

Today's Gospel reading is Mark 3:7-12. In it, demons refer to Jesus as "Son of God." I always thought they said those words out of fear. But this Bible reflection says the following:

Here the unclean spirits address Jesus as the Son of God, not as a confession, but as an attempt to render him harmless. There was a popular belief that knowledge of the precise name or quality of a person confers mastery over him. The demons try to control Jesus and strip him of his power, but their cries of recognition are futile. Jesus is truly the Son of God, the Bearer of the Holy Spirit, and between the Holy Spirit and the unclean spirits there is a categorical antithesis that the demons must recognize. With Jesus’ divine authority, the unclean spirits are silenced. He is the “Stronger One” who ties the “strong man” (the devil) and despoils him.