Advent Day 21: Tobiah’s Journey

Ornament: Fish

2014-12-19 09.33.58

Bible Passage: Tobit 5, 6:1-9, 10:1-6, 11:1-15

Short Version (for Tots):


Raphael entered the house, Tobit greeted him first. He replied, “Joyful greetings to you!” Tobit answered, “What joy is left for me? Here I am, a blind man who cannot see the light of heaven, but must remain in darkness!”

The young man said, “Take courage! God’s healing is near!”

Tobit then said: “My son Tobiah wants to go to Media. Can you go with him to show him the way? ” He answered: “Yes, I will go with him.”

Tobiah left to set out on his journey, accompanied by the angel; they camped beside the Tigris River. A large fish leaped out of the water and tried to swallow [Tobiah’s] foot.

The angel said to the young man, “Grab the fish and hold on to it!” He seized the fish, slit [it] open; he put aside the gall, heart, and liver. Then he roasted and ate part of the fish. The two of them traveled on together [and then back home].

[When they neared Tobit’s house,] Raphael said to Tobiah, “I know that his eyes will be opened. Apply the fish gall to his eyes; then your father will have sight again.”

Tobit got up to meet his son. Tobiah went up to him with the fish gall in his hand and applied the medicine to his eyes. Tobiah used both hands to peel the white scales from the corners of his eyes. Tobit saw his son and threw his arms around him.

Weeping, he exclaimed, “I can see you, son, the light of my eyes!” Then he prayed,

“Blessed be God,
blessed be his great name,
and blessed be all his holy angels.
May his great name be with us,
and blessed be all the angels throughout all the ages.
God it was who afflicted me,
and God who has had mercy on me.
Now I see my son Tobiah!”


Full Version:
Then Tobiah replied to his father Tobit: “Everything that you have commanded me, father, I shall do. But how will I be able to get that money from him, since he does not know me, and I do not know him? What sign can I give him so that he will recognize and trust me, and give me the money? I do not even know the roads to Media, in order to go there.”
Tobit answered his son Tobiah: “He gave me his bond, and I gave him mine; I divided his into two parts, and each of us took one part; I put one part with the money. It is twenty years since I deposited that money! So, son, find yourself a trustworthy person who will make the journey with you, and we will give him wages when you return; but bring back that money from Gabael while I am still alive.”
Tobiah went out to look for someone who would travel with him to Media, someone who knew the way. He went out and found the angel Raphael standing before him (though he did not know* that this was an angel of God).
Tobiah said to him, “Where do you come from, young man?” He replied, “I am an Israelite, one of your kindred. I have come here to work.” Tobiah said to him, “Do you know the way to Media?”
“Yes,” he replied, “I have been there many times. I know the place well and am acquainted with all the routes. I have often traveled to Media; I used to stay with our kinsman Gabael, who lives at Rages in Media. It is a good two days’ journey from Ecbatana to Rages,* for Rages is situated in the mountains, but Ecbatana is in the middle of the plain.”
Tobiah said to him, “Wait for me, young man, till I go in and tell my father; for I need you to make the journey with me. I will pay you your wages.”
He replied, “Very well, I will wait; but do not be long.”
Tobiah went in and informed his father Tobit: “I have found someone of our own Israelite kindred who will go with me!” Tobit said, “Call the man in, so that I may find out from what family and tribe he comes, and whether he is trustworthy enough to travel with you, son.”
Tobiah went out to summon him, saying, “Young man, my father is calling for you.” When Raphael entered the house, Tobit greeted him first. He replied, “Joyful greetings to you!” Tobit answered, “What joy is left for me? Here I am, a blind man who cannot see the light of heaven, but must remain in darkness, like the dead who no longer see the light! Though alive, I am among the dead. I can hear people’s voices, but I do not see them.” The young man said, “Take courage! God’s healing is near; so take courage!” Tobit then said: “My son Tobiah wants to go to Media. Can you go with him to show him the way? I will pay you your wages, brother.” He answered: “Yes, I will go with him, and I know all the routes. I have often traveled to Media and crossed all its plains so I know well the mountains and all its roads.”
Tobit asked him, “Brother, tell me, please, from what family and tribe are you?”
He replied, “Why? What need do you have for a tribe? Aren’t you looking for a hired man?” Tobit replied, “I only want to know, brother, whose son you truly are and what your name is.”
He answered, “I am Azariah, son of the great Hananiah, one of your own kindred.”
Tobit exclaimed: “Welcome! God save you, brother! Do not be provoked with me, brother, for wanting to learn the truth about your family. It turns out that you are a kinsman, from a noble and good line! I knew Hananiah and Nathan, the two sons of the great Shemeliah. They used to go to Jerusalem with me, where we would worship together. They were not led astray; your kindred are good people. You are certainly of good lineage. So welcome!”
Then he added: “For each day I will give you a drachma as wages, as well as expenses for you and for my son. So go with my son, and I will even add a bonus to your wages!” The young man replied: “I will go with him. Do not fear. In good health we will leave you, and in good health we will return to you, for the way is safe.”
Tobit said, “Blessing be upon you, brother.” Then he called his son and said to him: “Son, prepare whatever you need for the journey, and set out with your kinsman. May God in heaven protect you on the way and bring you back to me safe and sound; may his angel accompany you for your safety, son.”
Tobiah left to set out on his journey, and he kissed his father and mother. Tobit said to him, “Have a safe journey.”
But his mother began to weep and she said to Tobit: “Why have you sent my child away? Is he not the staff of our hands, as he goes in and out before us? Do not heap money upon money! Rather relinquish it in exchange for our child! What the Lord has given us to live on is certainly enough for us.”
Tobit reassured her: “Do not worry! Our son will leave in good health and come back to us in good health. Your own eyes will see the day when he returns to you safe and sound. So, do not worry; do not fear for them, my sister. For a good angel will go with him, his journey will be successful, and he will return in good health.”
Then she stopped weeping.
When the young man left home, accompanied by the angel, the dog followed Tobiah out and went along with them. Both journeyed along, and when the first night came, they camped beside the Tigris River.
When the young man went down to wash his feet in the Tigris River, a large fish leaped out of the water and tried to swallow his foot. He shouted in alarm.
But the angel said to the young man, “Grab the fish and hold on to it!” He seized the fish and hauled it up on dry land.
The angel then told him: “Slit the fish open and take out its gall, heart, and liver, and keep them with you; but throw away the other entrails. Its gall, heart, and liver are useful for medicine.”*
After Tobiah had slit the fish open, he put aside the gall, heart, and liver. Then he roasted and ate part of the fish; the rest he salted and kept for the journey.
Afterward the two of them traveled on together till they drew near to Media.
Then the young man asked the angel this question: “Brother Azariah, what medicine is in the fish’s heart, liver, and gall?”
He answered: “As for the fish’s heart and liver, if you burn them to make smoke in the presence of a man or a woman who is afflicted by a demon or evil spirit, any affliction will flee and never return. As for the gall, if you apply it to the eyes of one who has white scales, blowing right into them, sight will be restored.”
Meanwhile, day by day, Tobit was keeping track of the time Tobiah would need to go and to return. When the number of days was reached and his son did not appear, he said, “Could it be that he has been detained there? Or perhaps Gabael has died, and there is no one to give him the money?”
And he began to grieve.
His wife Anna said, “My son has perished and is no longer among the living!” And she began to weep aloud and to wail over her son: “Alas, child, light of my eyes, that I have let you make this journey!”
But Tobit kept telling her: “Be still, do not worry, my sister; he is safe! Probably they have to take care of some unexpected business there. The man who is traveling with him is trustworthy and one of our kindred. So do not grieve over him, my sister. He will be here soon.”
As they drew near to Kaserin, which is opposite Nineveh,
Raphael said: “You know how we left your father. Let us hurry on ahead of your wife to prepare the house while they are still on the way.”
So both went on ahead together, and Raphael said to him, “Take the gall in your hand!” And the dog ran along behind them.
Meanwhile, Anna sat watching the road by which her son was to come.
When she saw him coming, she called to his father, “Look, your son is coming, and the man who traveled with him!”
Raphael said to Tobiah before he came near to his father: “I know that his eyes will be opened.
Apply the fish gall to his eyes, and the medicine will make the white scales shrink and peel off from his eyes; then your father will have sight again and will see the light of day.”
Then Anna ran up to her son, embraced him, and said to him, “Now that I have seen you again, son, I am ready to die!” And she sobbed aloud.
Tobit got up and stumbled out through the courtyard gate to meet his son. Tobiah went up to him with the fish gall in his hand and blew into his eyes. Holding him firmly, he said, “Courage, father.” Then he applied the medicine to his eyes, and it made them sting.
Tobiah used both hands to peel the white scales from the corners of his eyes. Tobit saw his son and threw his arms around him.
Weeping, he exclaimed, “I can see you, son, the light of my eyes!” Then he prayed,
“Blessed be God,
blessed be his great name,
and blessed be all his holy angels.
May his great name be with us,
and blessed be all the angels throughout all the ages.
God it was who afflicted me,
and God who has had mercy on me.
Now I see my son Tobiah!”
Then Tobit went back in, rejoicing and praising God with full voice. Tobiah related to his father how his journey had been a success; that he had brought back the money; and that he had married Raguel’s daughter Sarah, who was about to arrive, for she was near the gate of Nineveh.

Coloring Page >>


“Assemble and listen, sons of Jacob,
listen to Israel, your father.”

– Genesis 49:2

Throughout the Bible, God uses many prophets and people to spread His message to the world. That message is that He wants us to turn away from our sins and love Him completely!

In the book of Genesis, Jacob has many sons and most of them have not behaved very well. Before Jacob dies, he tells his sons that although they have done wrong, he still loves them and forgives them.

In the same way, God loves us! He sends His Son, Jesus, to us at Christmas so that we can learn from Him and be forgiven of our sins.

Dear Jesus,

Your Father was so wonderful to give us such a precious gift: You!

I am so excited that soon we will be celebrating Your birth on Christmas day! Guide me always so that I can give my love and holiness as a gift to You.

Amen.


** All reflection content is the work of Lauren A. Rupar and cannot be reproduced or distributed without permission. For information on printing and distribution rights, contact Lauren.

Leave a Reply

Enter your email address to receive instant updates!

About
Hi, I'm Lauren. Mommy to two, nanny to two, wife, teacher, homemaker, Catholic, artist, writer, friend, sister, daughter. Here you'll find everything from updates about our family, info and advice about parenting and homemaking, or pretty much anything else I feel like writing. Welcome!