What I’m Thinking: Pay Attention

Jesus was identified as “the Holy One of God” right in front of everybody – and somehow they missed it. What are we missing?

Here’s a transcript:

Last week I was thinking about the things I would like to be told. This week, however, I observe that people have been told something and yet the information passes them by.

I’m thinking a little further along in the first chapter of Mark’s Gospel (Mark 1:21-28). Here, Mark described Jesus teaching in the synagogue in Capernaum. Capernaum may very well have been where Jesus was living at the time, and so it would not probably have been all that unfamiliar for the people there to have heard Jesus speaking before. On this occasion, however, they found his teaching different. He spoke “with authority,” which was different from what they were used to.

In the middle of it all, a man with an “unclean spirit” stands up in the congregation. “What have you to do with us, Jesus of Nazareth? Have you come to destroy us? I know who you are: the Holy One of God.”

Jesus commanded the spirit to be silent and to come out of the man, which it did. The people were more astounded. A new teaching: with authority! And even the unclean spirits are subject to him.

Did you notice what they left out?

They left out the spirit’s identification of Jesus as “the Holy One of God.”

Now, Mark didn’t miss it. Mark made sure that we wouldn’t miss it. But isn’t it the case more often than not that these things of such immense importance sort of glide by us? We see things and we see them; we hear things and we hear them; but that essential connection is not made in the brain or in the heart or in the soul.

Now, I think Mark has written a cautionary tale to pay attention to the things before us, and to consider them, and to seek to understand them. It is a good thing to recognize teaching with authority. It is a good thing to recognize when the evils of the world can be overcome by someone.

But dare we really miss the identification of the Holy One of God?

That’s what I’m thinking. I’m curious to hear what you’re thinking. Leave me your thoughts in the comment section below; I’d love to hear from you.

Categories What I'm Thinking | Tags: , | Posted on January 25, 2021

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