Monk Fighting Off Some Devils with a Club,
Edited by Raymund of Peñafort, with gloss of Bernard of Parma,
Calendarium, Decretals of Gregory IX with glossa ordinaria (the Smithfield Decretals),
Last quarter of the 13th century or 1st quarter of the 14th century,
Royal 10 E IV, fol. 247
© The British Library, London

Monk Fighting Off Some Devils with a Club,
Edited by Raymund of Peñafort, with gloss of Bernard of Parma,
Calendarium, Decretals of Gregory IX with glossa ordinaria (the Smithfield Decretals),
Last quarter of the 13th century or 1st quarter of the 14th century,
Royal 10 E IV, fol. 247
© The British Library, London

Gospel of 30 August 2022

And the devil went out of him without hurting him at all

Luke 4:31-37

Jesus went down to Capernaum, a town in Galilee, and taught them on the sabbath. And his teaching made a deep impression on them because he spoke with authority.

In the synagogue there was a man who was possessed by the spirit of an unclean devil, and it shouted at the top of its voice, ‘Ha! What do you want with us, Jesus of Nazareth? Have you come to destroy us? I know who you are: the Holy One of God.’ But Jesus said sharply, ‘Be quiet! Come out of him!’ And the devil, throwing the man down in front of everyone, went out of him without hurting him at all. Astonishment seized them and they were all saying to one another, ‘What teaching! He gives orders to unclean spirits with authority and power and they come out.’ And reports of him went all through the surrounding countryside.

Reflection on the manuscript page

At times, we can not feel quite ourselves. Our spirit is disturbed. We feel distressed, depressed, angry or anxious… we feel we are not our normal selves. Some external event may well be causing all this, but still, we feel we are thrown out of balance.

The disturbed man whom Jesus encounters in today’s Gospel reading was a very extreme example of this. The evil spirit had completely taken him over. Jesus set him free. At times, we too need to be released from some negative thoughts and attitudes that hold us back from becoming the person God is calling us to be. If we open our hearts to Christ, we too can possess something of that liberating authority that characterised the life of Jesus: an inner power to help fend off negative thoughts.

Our artwork is a detail from the page of a late 13th-century illuminated manuscript, depicting a monk fighting off some demons with a club. He is doing this outside his monastery. In the spiritual life we have to fend off these evil spirits too outside the castle of our souls, and not let them in.

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Michael Trudeau
Member
Michael Trudeau(@michaeltrudeau)
28 days ago

Jesus stands at the door and knocks. Demons lurk seeking to bring us to harm. We all need to keep a stout club of grace near at hand.

Charles Marriott
Member
Charles Marriott(@chazbo)
28 days ago

What a brave little monk! To come out from the safety of his monastery…

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