30th Sunday in Ordinary Time Year B - 28/10/2018 - Gospel: Mk 10:46-52
Two sides
In today's gospel we see several contrasting pictures, namely light and darkness, a blind beggar sitting on the road side and the same, healthy man walking on the road, the man shouting and the voice told him to keep quiet, the voice scolded the man and the voice encouraged him and most importantly the crowd without compassion for the blind man and in contrast to Jesus who had full compassion for the outcast. We are living in a static world where we are influenced by the crowd and want to be in the majority, not minority.

The blind man in today's readings chose to be in the minority. His persistence made him stood out as a lone voice in the crowd. Even the crowd scolded him, telling him to keep quiet but he made his voice even louder. He had been living on the bottom rung of the society ladder for too long and he was determined to move forward and upward. He knew that without the help of Jesus he wouldn't  be able to. Hearing Jesus of Nazareth was passing by he shouted on top of his voice: 'Son of David, Jesus, have, pity on me' v.47. We don't know how the blind man knew that Jesus who came from the royal family and on the line of king David. The title 'Son of David' became significant when Jesus entered Jerusalem they treated him as their king. At his trial Pilate questioned him about his royal status and when he died with the inscription above his head 'king of the Jews'. Again we don't know how could the blind man recognize the identity of Jesus and also know that with Jesus on his side everything was possible, including giving him his sight back. Bartemaeus probably had heard about Jesus from others and he desired to meet Jesus. He was blind but his mind was clear and his faith in Jesus was strong. Society looked down on him but it would not stop him from coming to meet Jesus. Hearing his voice pleading, Jesus told the crowd let the man come to him. Hearing the voice of Jesus the blind man 'throwing off his cloak, he jumped up and went to Jesus' v.50. The crowd now changed their stand, against the man no more, they were the barriers stopping Bartimaeus coming to Jesus they now became the vehicle encouraging the man to come to Jesus. Some were looking for prestige positions; others were looking for power; and others again were looking for wealth. Bartimaeus was looking for his real need. 'What do you want me to do for you?' v.51  Jesus asked the man. A simple clear and short reply came from the man. 'Master, let me see again v.51b. Jesus granted him what he asked for. He no longer needed his cloak. Throwing off his cloak Bartimaeus had absolute trust that Jesus would healed him and he was right. By a simple command 'Go, your faith has saved you' v.52. Jesus gave him sight and Bartimaeus said good bye to the place where he used to sit begging for food and followed Jesus along the road.

Jesus was on the way to Jerusalem and it began the chain of events leading up to the Passion. Batimaeus became the disciple who saw Jesus who shared our human suffering and agony. The story of the blind man cured by Jesus is the story of compassion and grace of the Son of God who came into the world to showed us the Light.  We need to examine ourselves whether we lead people to Jesus or we become an obstacle stoping people to Jesus.