4th Sun B
The Commentaries Summarised
As a Church we are in a web of wisdom that comes to us both from tradition and contemporary writers. This section offers a summary of some commentaries on the Gospel. Also below is a list of the books and articles that have been consulted in compiling this Sunday's "Pray As You Can" and which could be used for further reading.
This Sunday's Commentary
Mark begins his presentation of the ministry of Jesus with a ‘typical’ day which we hear in this Sunday and next Sunday’s Gospel readings. It is a long day and three elements stand out: Jesus’ teaching authority, his power over the demons and illness and the amazement of the crowds.
Surprisingly, Jesus’ confrontation with evil does not begin out with the ‘lowlifes’ of his society but rather within the heart of respectability in the Sabbath service at the synagogue. Note, unlike Matthew and Luke, Jesus is not invited to speak, he steps up to the role – his time has come. The people are amazed at the way he opens the Scriptures and we are given an example of what his teaching does – it draws out evil that has been hidden within the heart of a ‘good’ person. Typical of the arrogance of evil, the demon within the man challenges Jesus. Jesus takes up the challenge and without even touching the man casts the demon out. In words that foreshadow Mark’s description of the death of Jesus at the end of the Gospel we are told of the cost to the man: his distress is genuine, he feels rent in two. But like a master surgeon, Jesus cleaves the man open, only to make him whole. This is true authority. No wonder the people are astounded and amazed.