Many churches throughout the world use a Bible reading schedule called a "lectionary." It's just a fancy word meaning "selected readings." Posts like this reflect on the readings for an upcoming Sunday or other Church holiday, as found in the three-year lectionary.
Our Gospel reading this week is a very long passage of Scripture. It covers two lengthy chapters of Mark’s Gospel. Throughout the passage there’s a recurring theme of Jesus’ love for his people, even for those who don’t recognize him. As you read the narrative, I pray that you will take time to reflect. How has Jesus loved you, even when you have had no care for him? This is no small question.
At different times in our lives, all of us, even those who are most faithful, act and think like the very people in this passage. We may be like the priests, plotting revenge against Jesus. We may be like the sinful woman, who recognizes a little of her sin and a little of Jesus’ righteousness. We might be like those who would chase her away, like Judas, who wanted his own profit and who later despaired. We might be like those who would welcome Jesus and even accompany him, but who would run away when threatened. We might be like those who arrested him because we were just doing our job. We might be like those who hated to see him die but stayed, at least for a while, to watch. We might be like those who realized we needed to risk our freedom and reputation to show him honor.
None of these people expected the resurrection. They all saw Jesus as the one who had been living in the area and who was now put to death. Their hope of a Messiah likely died along with Jesus.
As we reflect on the Gospel, as we approach the end of the penitential season of Lent, as we remember that we know the events of the resurrection, may we also be confronted with our need to have Jesus, the Savior of the World, save us as well.
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