October 12, 2012 - Friday of the Twenty-seventh Week in Ordinary Time

Galatians 3:7-14
Psalm 111:1-6
Luke 11:15-26

The problem with the law is how empty it is. There are hundreds of laws about food and eating, but none of them ever fed a starving person. The law about not mixing wool and linen in one cloth do not warm someone in need of clothes. Even the laws that tell people to care for the poor are still empty unless someone obeys. Above all, the law does not satisfy us spiritually. The only thing that the law does is reveal to us how lacking we are. Because of the law, I know what I do wrong, but the law does not lift a finger to help me do right. This is why St. Paul tells the Galatians that no one is justified before God by the law. The only thing that the law can provide is a curse for everyone who disobeys it, and who can go through life without ever breaking the law? We all break the law. So we all are cursed.

We are beaten down over and over again. And the law is true. It is no use to pretend that the law is false. The curse of the law is so frightening that we want it to be a nightmare we can wake up from, but we know that it is true. Journeying through the law is like walking through a desert. Does it help while walking through the desert to pretend that the human body does not need water? No. The law of thirst is absolute. If someone pretends that they do not need water, it just proves how badly in need they are: they are starting to lose their mind from thirst. But what if, instead of denying the law of thirst, we find an oasis?

What solution is there besides denying the truth? Faith. Just as food is to a hungry person and water to a thirsty person, so is the grace of faith to someone longing for God. Jesus tells us that if a demon is cast out, but the soul remains empty, the demon will return with 7 companions. If the law denies us our demons, but we remain empty, we will find worse demons. We will begin to think that we would be better off without the law. With faith though we are full, too full for any demons. Saying “NO” is a weak way to get rid of sin. Instead, say “Yes” to the Holy Spirit, to faith, to the grace of God, and there will be no room for evil.