Honestly Engaging Jesus - George's Weekly Message September 5, 2018
This week I’m wrestling with the Gospel reading for Sunday from Mark. Here it is from the Messageby Eugene Peterson:
Mark 7:24-37 The Message (MSG)
24-26 From there Jesus set out for the vicinity of Tyre. He entered a house there where he didn’t think he would be found, but he couldn’t escape notice. He was barely inside when a woman who had a disturbed daughter heard where he was. She came and knelt at his feet, begging for help. The woman was Greek, Syro-Phoenician by birth. She asked him to cure her daughter.
27 He said, “Stand in line and take your turn. The children get fed first. If there’s any left over, the dogs get it.”
28 She said, “Of course, Master. But don’t dogs under the table get scraps dropped by the children?”
29-30 Jesus was impressed. “You’re right! On your way! Your daughter is no longer disturbed. The demonic affliction is gone.” She went home and found her daughter relaxed on the bed, the torment gone for good.
Here’s our super hero, Jesus, calls someone a dog. Not just anyone, but a non-Jewish woman who is on her knees at his feet begging for his healing touch for her little daughter’s torment. That’sour Jesus: the Good Shepherd, the Redeemer, the Incarnate Word…calling an oppressed person a dog. Let that sink in for a moment.
This Sunday we’ll wrestle with this passage and do our best to face it square on without flinching or making excuses or getting too intellectual about it. We’ll see where the Spirit takes us, and how we can make sense of this seemingly inconsistent comment from our hero. Bring an open heart and an open mind.
See you Sunday.