During this liturgical year, we read from the Gospel of Mark. Each Gospel has its own style and personality. In John there are long discourses from Jesus with rich theological insights; Luke, written to a Gentile audience, has beautiful parables like the prodigal son and the good Samaritan; while Matthew, written to a Jewish audience, presents Jesus as the new Moses, with new teaching enfleshed by stories of what Jesus did. In Mark, the shortest and probably the earliest Gospel, we meet a Jesus who is always on the move. The Gospels were written in Greek, and Mark uses the word ‘euthus‘ or ‘eutheus‘ which means ‘immediately’ or ‘straight away’ more often than all the other Gospels combined – 42 times (18 in Matt; 6 each in Luke and John). This gives this Gospel a great sense of breathless urgency. In the first chapter alone, we see the word used 11 times!
This gives us an insight into the nature of Jesus’ ministry. We also see that Jesus needs to escape after this hectic day of ministry to find time alone with God. And finally that when the disciples come looking for him, since ‘everyone is looking for you,’ he doesn’t stay and minister, but he goes ‘elsewhere’ to continue to proclaim the kingdom of God there. We need to learn that at times we need to say ‘no’ to certain things (even if they seem good) in order to say ‘yes’ to the ‘one thing necessary.’
Recorded at St Michael’s, 9.30am (8’40”)
090208 – 5th Sunday Year B – Mark 1:29-39.