Commentary: 14th Sunday Year B

Resources Used:
1st Reading: Ezekiel 2:2–5
And when he spoke to me, a spirit entered into me and set me on my feet; and I heard him speaking to me. 3 He said to me, Mortal, I am sending you to the people of Israel, to a nation of rebels who have rebelled against me; they and their ancestors have transgressed against me to this very day. 4 The descendants are impudent and stubborn. I am sending you to them, and you shall say to them, “Thus says the Lord God.” 5 Whether they hear or refuse to hear (for they are a rebellious house), they shall know that there has been a prophet among them.
Responsorial Psalm: Psalm 123:1–4
1 To you I lift up my eyes, O you who are enthroned in the heavens!
2 As the eyes of servants look to the hand of their master, as the eyes of a maid to the hand of her mistress, so our eyes look to the Lord our God, until he has mercy upon us.
3 Have mercy upon us, O Lord, have mercy upon us, for we have had more than enough of contempt.
4 Our soul has had more than its fill of the scorn of those who are at ease, of the contempt of the proud.
Second Reading: 2 Corinthians 12:7–10
even considering the exceptional character of the revelations. Therefore, to keep me from being too elated, a thorn was given me in the flesh, a messenger of Satan to torment me, to keep me from being too elated. 8 Three times I appealed to the Lord about this, that it would leave me, 9 but he said to me, “My grace is sufficient for you, for power is made perfect in weakness.” So, I will boast all the more gladly of my weaknesses, so that the power of Christ may dwell in me. 10 Therefore I am content with weaknesses, insults, hardships, persecutions, and calamities for the sake of Christ; for whenever I am weak, then I am strong.
Gospel: Mark 6:1–6
He left that place and came to his hometown, and his disciples followed him. 2 On the sabbath he began to teach in the synagogue, and many who heard him were astounded. They said, “Where did this man get all this? What is this wisdom that has been given to him? What deeds of power are being done by his hands!
3 Is not this the carpenter,

Jesus shows that man can participate in the activity of God himself through work.

“Jesus came as the son of a carpenter (Matthew 13:55). He was not physically attractive, just as the prophets had predicted of Him (Isaiah 53:2). He was merely a carpenter, making plows and yokes, and instructing us by such symbols of righteousness to avoid an inactive life.” [Saint Justin the Martyr (ca. A.D. 155), Dialogue With Trypho The Jew, 7,7].

the son of Mary

A sign of derision. Jewish lineage is through the father. This is a round-about way of calling Him illegitimate.

Could also indicate that St. Joseph is already dead.

Could also be St. Mark’s allusion to the Jesus’ virginal conception by Mary.

and brother of James and Joses and Judas and Simon, and are not his sisters here with us?

“Brother” does not necessarily mean son of the same parents. Hebrew and Aramaic have no word for cousin or nephew, or other close male relative, other than “brother.” For example in Genesis 13:8 and 14:14, 16, Lot is called the brother of Abraham but Genesis 11:26-27 tells us that Lot’s father was Haran who had the same father, Terah, as Abram (Abraham). This would make Abraham Lot’s uncle.

When He was dying on the altar of the cross, Jesus entrusted his mother, Mary, to Saint John. If Mary had had other children, Hebrew tradition would have demanded that she be placed under their care

And they took offense at him. 4 Then Jesus said to them, “Prophets are not without honor, except in their hometown, and among their own kin, and in their own house.”
5 And he could do no deed of power there, except that he laid his hands on a few sick people and cured them. 6 And he was amazed at their unbelief.

Jesus worked no miracles here: not because he was unable to do so, but as punishment for the unbelief of the townspeople. God wants man to use the grace offered him, so that, by cooperating with grace, he become disposed to receive further graces. As St Augustine neatly puts it, “He who made you without your own self, will not justify you without yourself” (Sermons, 169).

“Two things must coincide for the reception of healing: the faith of those who need healing, and the power of him who will heal. If either of these are wanting, the blessing of a cure will not readily be attained.” [Pseudo-Victor of Antioch (5th century), Commentary on Mark 6].

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