14.02.2020 — Jesus silences his own identity

Week 5 of Ordinary Time, Friday – 14th February — Gospel: Mark 7,31-37

Jesus silences his own identity

After the healing of a deaf and dumb man, Jesus enjoins strict silence on the man who can now speak and on the witnesses. Why would Jesus not want people to spread the news? Perhaps their focus would be on a spectacular outward feat, obscuring the real meaning of his Messiahship. Because Jesus’ miracles point to the truth of his messianic identity. The fact that they violate his directive focuses the attention on the question of Jesus’ identity. Even though their understanding is incomplete, the people of the Decapolis cannot contain their excitement about the marvelous deeds done by Jesus. The readers are made to wonder, why the people are quietened while Jesus opened the mouth of the dumb man. Indeed, we come to know that there is more to Jesus than that he can heal the sick. This is proven in the crowds mini confession of faith (7,37), that alludes to Isaiah 35,5-6. Through their exclamations Mark wants his readers to understand that Jesus is the agent of God’s salvation and that Israel’s glorious future is present in the ministry of Jesus. Further, he wants to emphasize that Jesus has performed a role that Scripture ascribes to God alone (Ex 4,11; Wis 10,21).