Wednesday, January 22, 2014

Notes on Mark: Healing is a Sign of the New World

MARK 10:46-52

I do tend to forget this, that the healing is not an end in itself but a sign of the new world and of the internal changes taking place within us.
The healing of Bartimaeus occurs, in the structure of Mark's Gospel, in the section recounting Jesus' journey to Jerusalem. The context is important to keep in mind. Bartimaeus' healing was the last reported incident prior to Jesus' entry into the city. There, he would suffer his passion, lay down his life and take it up again. There, he would complete his ministry on earth. Just before the final act of this drama, in which Jesus accomplished the mission set by his father, we have an account of a miracle. Like all of Jesus' miracles, it is a sign that the Messiah is present. It is a sign that God saves his people...

... Faith is a gift of God. It was Bartimaeus' faith that led him to cry out to Jesus, to persist in the face of opposition, and come to Jesus when called. His faith opened him up to the work of Jesus in him, and that is an important message for us as well.

As we see the work of Jesus in Bartimaeus and in our own lives, we must remember that the healing we see is not an end or goal in itself. Rather, it is a sign of the new world that emerged from the coming of Jesus and his passion, death, and resurrection, a new world that we will know in fullness when Jesus comes again. Jesus is the door to a whole new existence for us, as he was for Bartimaeus. As great as it was for Bartimaeus to be able to see, he knew this was a sign, a call from Jesus, and he "followed him on the way" (Mark 10:52). As great as any healing is, it should be seen as a call into the new existence that Christ has won for us.
Mark: A Devotional Commentary
(The Word Among Us)

No comments:

Post a Comment