Lectionary Reflection: Mark 1: 29-39: Let Him Who has Ears, Hear

            Hush.  Listen.  Of course he would not let the demons say who he was.  He wanted people to decide for themselves about who he was without undue influence.  He wanted us to listen to him, not to demons.  He still wants us to listen to him as far as I can tell.  He wants us to pay attention to his words and specifically form our opinion about him based on what he says, what he says about himself and who he says he is.

            But isn’t that the way of it to this day?  Everyone has to come to their own conclusion about just who Jesus is.  Yes, we understand that, we say that, but then we neglect to add the politically incorrect part:  EVERYBODY CAN’T BE RIGHT…hush.

            You see what happened, though.  It was just like we said last time.  Last time he taught with authority.  Then he showed that authority by casting out the Akathartos (unclean spirit).  The people were amazed, but by what?  It was not by what he said.  It was the fact that even the impure spirits obeyed him.  Sigh.

            First they expected him to heal Simon’s mother-in-law, which he did.  Then they brought him every sick and demon possessed person they could find.  Do we really wonder why he escaped in the morning to a lonely place to pray?  How else might he get some peace and rest?

            Oh, but, “Everyone is looking for you,” they exclaimed.

            And this is a surprise?

            Jesus said, “Look, let’s get out of here,” (more or less).  “There are other villages.  I can preach there too.  This is why I came.”  Why?  To preach.  Lovely as the healings were and as wonderful as setting people free was, he came to preach.  LISTEN TO HIM…hush.

            One of the things that John Calvin got right was his description of the scriptures.  He called it the story of God and ourselves (more or less).  And here was the one person on earth, the one person in all of history who could tell us exactly about God and ourselves; but did the people listen?  Perhaps some did when he preached in their synagogues…but then they also brought him the demon possessed so he could drive out more demons…

            Don’t let the miracles blind you.  Later down the road Jesus himself says the people came not for the bread of life but because they got fed with ordinary bread.  We need to look at what he did, yes.  Greater works than these are what we are supposed to be doing.  But mostly we need to hear what he said.  Are we hearing him?  Do we really know the one who said, before Moses was, I AM…Hush.

            I don’t want to influence you unduly.  You can make up your own mind.  But I do want to encourage you to consider more than just the miracles.  Listen to what he has to say about God and ourselves.  Hear what he says about himself.  Then decide.  Will you believe and follow or not?  Let him who has ears, hear.

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