As he begins the story of the ministry of Jesus, Mark sets before us a typical day’s ministry of Jesus in Capernaum. It begins with the healing of the sick man in the synagogue, which we read last week. There are many others who also need Jesus’ help.
Jesus is still accompanied by the four disciples, the first ones to be called. The evangelist tells us how he heals the mother-in-law of Simon Peter. While our translation says that he ‘helped her up’, the Greek original is, literally, ‘he raised her up’. This is the term used for the resurrection of Jesus. The miracles of Jesus are signs of the kingdom, and point to the resurrection. He has come to raise up to new life those who welcome his help.
At sunset, once the sabbath has ended, the townspeople begin to bring their sick to Jesus. Mark stresses the impact of Jesus’ healing work by speaking of the gathering of the ‘whole town’. There is another reference to those who are possessed, those who in the contemporary view were victims of Satan. Jesus commands them not to make him known. He is constantly concerned to avoid any misunderstanding of his mission and purpose.
The evangelist brings the day to a conclusion by speaking of Jesus at prayer before the night ends.
How do I experience the new life and healing Jesus brings?
Do I allow time for quiet prayer in my daily life?
Let us pray for those who struggle with debilitating sickness of body or spirit.
Let us pray for those who care for sick and elderly family members.