Readings: Ephesians 4:32-5:8; Luke 13:10-17
After this weekend’s latest violent tragedy in Pittsburgh, it’s appropriate that today’s gospel is set in a synagogue. Appropriate, as a reminder that Jesus was not a white man but a swarthy near-eastern Jew, that he didn’t worship in a Christian church but a synagogue; and that he was unarmed and taught, he who lives by the sword, dies by the sword. I believe he’d say the same of guns.
In today’s gospel, Jesus maintains that the woman he has cured had been bound by Satan. That’s interesting because she was evidently not possessed by Satan. She’s a woman who worships God and Jesus recognizes her as a daughter of Abraham, that is, a woman of faith, a living trust in God.
And so she’s in the synagogue. Not because it’s necessarily a wonderful, welcoming place–its leader is certainly not a warm, cuddly character. She’s there because God’s people are found there and the Word of God is preserved and celebrated there. God is present there and, in her infirmity, she knows that is where she needs to be, whatever its shortcomings. So her faith is able to find her Messiah there and his healing power.