Wednesday, January 14, 2009

Mark 10

A couple of thoughts:
1. The teaching on divorce. Remember, we cannot take one passage in isolation of others. The Bible gives legitimate grounds for divorce -- Adultery and Abandonment. The casual divorce of the first century (or any century) is the focus of Jesus teaching here.
2. Let the children come to me . . . I just like the thought of that.
3. What must I do to inherit Eternal Life. I cannot help but find my self singing Gary Weeks' "Mr. Nazareth Man". Remember it was widely believed that God favored the righteous with material prosperity and large families. Therefore, the Disciples are asking if Jesus is saying those who have been clearly blessed by God are not going to make it into the Kingdom of Heaven what hope do the rest of us have? This is where the Disciples are hung up. Remember Tevya in Fiddler on the Roof -- the high point of his "If I were a rich man" song is that he would be able to finally have the time to study the Torah and delve into the mysteries. With people this is impossible -- with God nothing is impossible. GOOD NEWS -- there is hope for all of us.
4. Healing of Bartimeaus in Jericho. Bartimeaus is so marginalized by his society that he doesn't even have a name. He is simply Son of Timeaus (that is what Bartimeaus means). Can you imagine being so devalued and, dare I say it, unloved, that you don't even have a name but are known only as "so and so's kid". Jesus treats him with respect by asking "what do you want me to do for you?" Jesus does NOT assume, but allows Bartimeaus the right and the dignity to say it himself. Pretty cool stuff! That is the level of grace that makes we want to love Jesus even more!

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