Habemus Altare

Already here in just the 6th chapter [of Mark], however, Jesus, stepping onto the stage fully grown, has been baptized, called his disciples, been proclaiming the good news and teaching with authority, exorcising unclean spirits, healing the sick and the lame, stated his lordship over the Sabbath, redefined his family, calmed the sea and the wind, raised a child from the dead and spent deliberate time teaching his disciples separately.

He has been, in short, amazing. Now he chooses to return to his hometown, to the people he grew up with and, suddenly, he is five years old again, or at least just a carpenter. They know who he is, defining him by his relationship to his biological mother, brothers and sisters. They know what he can and cannot do. The extent of their unbelief amazes Jesus. It undoes, to an extent, what he is able to do amongst them.

I find in this part of the text a caution that is rather frightening. There is the chance that we can miss out on Jesus. The church – the Body of Christ, his hometown if you will, should take note. How has or is our confident knowing of who Jesus is, our arrogant definitions of what he can and cannot do curbed his power to transform us and others? Are we or have we been offended by Jesus, whose power Paul relays to us in 2 Corinthians is made perfect in weakness (12:9)? Unbelief is not a way I would want us to amaze Jesus.

Janice Love, “Amazing Jesus
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