Last updated on February 21, 2021
Happy the man whose offence is forgiven,
whose sin is remitted.
O happy the man to whom the Lord
imputes no guilt,
in whose spirit is no guile.
I kept it secret and my frame was wasted.
I groaned all day long,
for night and day, your hand was heavy upon me.
Indeed my strength was dried up
by the summer’s heat.
But now I have acknowledged my sins;
my guilt I did not hide.
I said: “I will confess
my offence to the Lord.”
And you, Lord, have forgiven
the guilt of my sin.
So let every good man pray to you
in the time of need.
The floods of water may reach high
but him they shall not reach.
You are my hiding place, O Lord;
you save me from distress.
(You surround me with cries of deliverance.)
I will instruct you and teach you
the way you should go;
I will give you counsel
with my eye upon you.
Be not like horse and mule, unintelligent,
needing bridle and bit
else they will not approach you.
Many sorrows have the wicked
but he who trusts in the Lord,
loving mercy surrounds him.
Rejoice, rejoice in the Lord,
exult, you just!
O come, ring out your joy,
all you upright of heart.
Gospel of Mark 1.40-45
A leper came to him (and kneeling down) begged him and said, “If you wish, you can make me clean.”
Moved with pity, he stretched out his hand, touched him, and said to him, “I do will it. Be made clean.”
The leprosy left him immediately, and he was made clean.
Then, warning him sternly, he dismissed him at once.
Then he said to him, “See that you tell no one anything, but go, show yourself to the priest and offer for your cleansing what Moses prescribed; that will be proof for them.”
The man went away and began to publicize the whole matter. He spread the report abroad so that it was impossible for Jesus to enter a town openly. He remained outside in deserted places, and people kept coming to him from everywhere.
On his knees, a man forced by the law to be alone, broken and made “unclean” by leprosy (Lev 13.45-46), pleaded with Jesus to make him clean. He knew that Jesus could do it but humbly asked, “if you choose”. Sometimes we experience the effects of sin eating away the joy and freedom God wants for us? He sent his Only-Begotten Son, so that all who believe in him may be restored to life and joy eternal. Always “moved with pity” he yearns for us to kneel and plead as the leper did.
Blessed be Lord for he has heard
my cry, my appeal.
The Lord is my strength and my shield;
in him my heart trusts.
I was helped, my heart rejoices
and I praise Him with my song.