|Friends, today’s Gospel recounts some of Jesus’ healing works. After entering the public stage, Jesus confronts and expels a demon in the synagogue. And here, once again, those possessed by demons are brought to Christ to be healed. “When it was evening, after sunset, they brought to him all who were ill or possessed by demons. The whole town was gathered at the door. He cured many who were sick with various diseases, and he drove out many demons.”
What is the metaphysical status of these New Testament demons? Suffice it to say that they are forces that stand behind the more immediately apparent manifestations of evil in the world: oppression, racism, violence, and war. Whether we construe them personally or impersonally, Jesus’ struggle against these “powers and principalities” is at the heart of the Gospel narratives—and he is ultimately victorious.