Thursday, September 10, 2015

Pentecost 16 B - Mark 8:27-38

Mark 8:27-38
If Jesus thought of his generation as adulterous and sinful what would he say of ours? I know there are a number of well-meaning people of faith who think we’ve gone to hell in a hand basket and fear that it’s fixin’ to get worse. But since the rebellion in the garden there has never been a time in human history when we have not been an adulterous and sinful generation. That doesn’t mean there are not degrees of separation when it comes to what was meant to be and what is. “It was the best of times, it was the worst of times.” (A Tale of Two Cities – Charles Dickens) Peter publically confesses the Christ; “you are the Messiah” and then privately rebukes Jesus when Jesus defines what it means to be Messiah in a way that does not conform to Peter’s preconceived notion. Messiahs are not meant to undergo great suffering and be killed even if they promise to rise again. If Peter missed the Messiah boat before the resurrection we, who are on the flip side of the crucifixion, are more likely to cast Jesus in our own image of power and glory. No one is ashamed of the mighty Messiah coming in power and majesty to smash the enemies of God to pieces.  But if we preach Christ crucified the King of Glory is never far removed from the place where the world was saved. “Father, forgive them for they know not what they do.” It was God’s design that the Messiah should be stripped naked and nailed to wood by Roman soldiers so that the Jewish rabbi from the Gentile region of Galilee could change all our ideas about power and prestige. Our problem is that we belong to an adulterous and sinful generation that holds on to this life with a death grip and denies everything except ourselves believing we understand the divine mind when really we are mired in human things.

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