Last Sunday, I talked about there being a common theme in Mark you would hear a lot this year. The theme is that the Kingdom of God has come, it is near, and it is not yet fulfilled.
Mark has a second common theme that was in our passage last week, this morning, and will be many times this year. We call it the Messianic secret because Jesus heals people and casts out demons but will not allow them to identify Jesus as the Messiah, the Christ, the Anointed One that they (the Israelites) have been awaiting.
I also shared that Mark’s first chapter is extremely busy…
Jesus is baptized.
Jesus is tempted in the wilderness (by Satan).
Jesus preaches his mission to proclaim the Word, and to release the prisoners and those held captive. Afterwards, he is chased out of his hometown.
Jesus calls the disciples into new vocations, into a new way of being, and into relationship with him.
Jesus performs his first exorcism in Mark.
This morning, we now have three stories that may seem disconnected and yet are deeply intertwined with one another.
When Jesus called Simon (who will become Peter), Andrew, James, and John from their boats to become “Fishers of Men”, he was calling them to leave behind their professions and their families. Thus, we often imagine that they were single men.
BUT, did you notice who the woman healed in our text today is? Simon’s mother-in-law.
Now, it is not a secret that at Jesus’ time the majority of the community believed if a person was sick it was one of two reasons either (1) the person had an unclean spirit/demon or (2) the person was being punished for their own sin or the sin of their previous generations.
Ponder that for a moment. Read the rest of this entry »