– Monday of the 16th Week of Ordinary Time –
“Then some of the scribes and Pharisees said to him, ‘Teacher, we wish to see a sign from you.’” [Matthew 12:38]
In today’s gospel, the Pharisees and scribes challenge Jesus to provide a sign to prove that he is the Messiah. It is really quite incredible that they are asking for this; if only they had opened their eyes, they would have seen many signs: Jesus had just healed a deaf and dumb man who was possessed (Mt 12:22-32), cured a leper (Mt 8:1-4), and calmed a storm (Mt 8:23-27). In spite of the miracles, the healings and words of wisdom, the Pharisees and scribes demanded more proof. Yet because their hearts were hardened and their eyes were closed, they did not see him. In truth, they would not have been satisfied with anything Jesus did; no sign would have been big enough – not even the resurrection (the sign of Jonah mentioned in Mt 12:39).
Jesus’ greatest sign is actually his presence among us both then and now. Yet the scribes and Pharisees rejected his life and ministry, and so Jesus rebukes their lack of faith.
On our journey of faith, we are called to seek God with an open heart. During times of trouble, we can turn to the source of all our answers: Jesus. Richard Rohr sums up our journey of faith as “the leap into the water, now with the lived experience that there is One who can and will catch you—and lead you where you need to go!” Believe.
by Lisa McKerr