Last Sunday, as I listened to a dramatic reading of the entire gospel of Mark, I was struck by the number of exorcisms Jesus performed. In the different ways that “evil spirits” manifested in people, Jesus commanded those “spirits” to “come out!” and the people were healed. I’m wondering this morning if all the synoptics were similarly engaged in reporting such events. My attention was a caught because today’s gospel from Luke (11:14-23) begins with Jesus “driving out a demon that was mute, and when the demon had gone out, the mute man spoke and the crowds were amazed.”
That makes me think that the gospel writers use the term “demon” as we might not only when speaking about any sort sinful habit, as in “the demon rum,” but also with some physical conditions that are not easily dealt with. There are examples of physical cures in the gospels, as in “the man with the withered hand” but I wonder what I would learn by re-reading the texts with the intent to identify “demons,” how Jesus dealt with them, and what was the transformation that occurred upon the release.
As is often the case, a paper protruding from among my side-table books this morning gave me a clue to my wondering expressed above. We would do well, I think, to ponder moments in our lives when a light appeared in some way and see if it deepens our understanding of something heretofore inexplicable.
The Opening of Eyes
by David White
That day I saw beneath dark clouds
the passing light over the water,
and I heard the voice of the world
aaaaaa speak out,
I knew then as I had before
Life is no passing memory of what
aaaaaa has been,
Nor the remaining pages in a great book
aaaaaa waiting to be read.
It is the opening of eyes, long closed.
It is the vision of far off things,
aaaaaa seen for the silence they hold.
It is the heart after years of secret conversing,
aaaaaa speaking out loud in a clear air.
It is Moses in the desert fallen to his knees
aaaaaa before the lit bush.
It is the man throwing away his shoes
aaaaaa as if to enter heaven,
And finding himself, astonished,
Opened, at last, to falling in love
aaaaaa with solid ground.