Luke 7:33-34

“For John the Baptist has come eating no bread and drinking no wine; and you say, ‘He has a demon.’ The Son of man has come eating and drinking; and you say, ‘Behold, a glutton and a drunkard, a friend of tax collectors and sinners!'”

G.K. Chesterton remarked long ago that when you see a thing attacked for being too round and too square, too black and too white, too fat and too thin, too tall and too short, too bad in one way and too bad in the opposite way, you may be sure that it is very good.  The gospel has just this strange quality of attracting critics who, in their rush to contradict it, do not mind contradicting themselves.  Jesus remarks on this weird phenomenon in today’s reading, making note of those who faulted John the Baptist as “demonic” for his asceticism while simultaneously faulting Jesus for not being ascetic.  Chesterton remarked that the confused and contradictory attacks on the Faith are not because the Faith is weird and the critics are sane, but because the critics are insane and the Faith is normal.

Mark Shea


Mark P. Shea is a popular Catholic writer and speaker. The author of numerous books, his most recent work is The Work of Mercy (Servant) and The Heart of Catholic Prayer (Our Sunday Visitor). Mark contributes numerous articles to many magazines, including his popular column “Connecting the Dots” for the National Catholic Register. Mark is known nationally for his one minute “Words of Encouragement” on Catholic radio. He also maintains the Catholic and Enjoying It blog and regularly blogs for National Catholic Register. He lives in Washington state with his wife, Janet, and their four sons.

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