The startling authority of Jesus in Mark 1 video discussion

The gospel lectionary reading for Epiphany 4 in Year B is Mark 1.21–28, Mark’s account of the beginning of Jesus’ ministry. It is, like all the early parts of Mark, highly compressed, but it is packed full of fascinating detail which begins to set the agenda for Mark’s portrayal of Jesus.

The episode is striking within the gospels, in that it is the only one which is included in Luke (Luke 4.31–37) but not included in Matthew. Luke positions his account following Jesus’ rejection in Nazareth, which Mark postpones to chapter 6, whilst in Mark it immediately follows the call of the first disciples, which Luke postpones until the miraculous catch of fish in Luke 5. The effect of this in Mark is to suggest that the disciples were immediately thrown into the dynamic of Jesus’ ministry.

Come and join Ian and James as they exploring the passage and its implications.

(Written commentary can be found here.)

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1 thought on “The startling authority of Jesus in Mark 1 video discussion”

  1. Ah, Ian and James, much good food for thought here.
    To take one point – The metaphysical meaning of Capernaum
    Capernaum, village of Nahum; village of consolation; shelter of comfort; covering of compassion; covering of repentance.
    refers to an inner conviction of the abiding compassion and restoring power of Being. When one enters this state of consciousness a healing virtue pours out of the soul and transforms all discord to harmony. It is this great soul compassion and yearning to help humanity out of its errors that makes the so-called “natural healer.”
    In man’s body consciousness Capernaum is located in the abdominal region. Gen 43:30

    To be contrasted with Christ’s condemnation of Capernaum in Matt. 11:23, represents Christian sympathy, which has been exalted to heaven but shall be brought down to hell, or Hades, the abode of the dead; that is, the sympathy that pours its thought substance out to error shall be brought down to hell.
    That sympathy helps the sick along in their delusions by sympathizing with them. It mourns over the dead and adds the burden of death thought to death. It joins those who grieve, and grief wears its weeds of sorrow in every home, and every heart slows its beats to meet the measure of the mournful thought. Yet the praises of the “sympathetic tear” are sung by poets; orators eulogize it, and preachers enjoin it. Thus it is “exalted unto heaven.”
    But when Truth is revealed by her works, and casts out the demons of sickness and raises the dead, then false sympathy is brought down to Hades–nothingness. []

    Mere sympathy, or identifying/supporting /standing with the oppressed or marginalized is not sufficient; there needs the life transforming work of the Overcomer of which it is quintessentially the life/authority/power of the life of Jesus made manifest through His body the church for the
    Pulling down of strongholds, the breaking of burdensome yokes the opening of prison doors to them that are bound.
    Capernaum may well have been a “safe” place.
    Jesus showed that it was not a safe place where the demonic is concerned and repentance is not preached and where liberation is not a mighty power.


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