YEAR B: HOMILY FOR THE 27TH SUNDAY IN ORDINARY TIME
HOMILY THEME: MARRIAGE AND DIVORCE….”Let no one separate what God has joined”
BY: Fr. Fernando PERALES i Madueño
Today, the Pharisees want to put Jesus to the test again, and they propose him the question of divorce. But, instead of giving them a definite answer, Jesus asks them in return what the Scriptures say and, without criticizing Moses' Law, makes them understand that while that Law is legitimate, it is only temporal: «Moses wrote this law for you, because you are stubborn» (Mk 10:5).
Jesus reminds them what the Genesis says: «But in the beginning of creation God made them male and female» (Mk 10:6; cf. Gn 1:27). Jesus speaks here of the unity of Humankind. Man will leave father and mother and will join his wife, and the two shall become one flesh to form Mankind. This represents a new reality: Two human beings form a unity, not as an “association”, but as generator of Humanity. The conclusion is quite evident: «Let no one separate what God has joined» (Mk 10:9).
If we look at marriage as an association, its indissolubility cannot be apprehended. If marriage is just a matter of associated interests, we can then understand its dissolution may appear as legitimate. In this case, to speak of marriage is actually abusing the language, because it refers only to the association of two single persons that have decided to make their lives more pleasant. When the Lord speaks of marriage He is referring to something else. The Vatican II Council reminds us: «For the good of the spouses and their off-springs as well as of society, the existence of the sacred bond no longer depends on human decisions alone. For, God Himself is the author of matrimony, endowed as it is with various benefits and purposes. All of these have a very decisive bearing on the continuation of the human race» (Gaudium et spes, n. 48).
Back home, the Apostles asked him again about the demands of marriage, and this is followed by the tender scene with the infants. Both passages are related. The second lesson is like a parable that explains how the marriage is possible. The Kingdom of God is for those that become as infants and accept to build something new. And marriage is the same if we have really understood what it actually means, that is: to leave, to join and to become.
Fr. Fernando PERALES i Madueño (Terrassa, Barcelona, Spain)