Mark 7:24-37 “Tell No One the Good News?” 05/22/2011/0900am JUMC

From there he set out and went away to the region of Tyre. He entered a house and did not want anyone to know he was there. Yet he could not escape notice, but a woman whose little daughter had an unclean spirit immediately heard about him, and she came and bowed down at his feet. Now the woman was a Gentile, of Syrophoenician origin. She begged him to cast the demon out of her daughter. He said to her, “Let the children be fed first, for it is not fair to take the children’s food and throw it to the dogs.” But she answered him, “Sir, even the dogs under the table eat the children’s crumbs.” Then he said to her, “For saying that, you may go–the demon has left your daughter.” So she went home, found the child lying on the bed, and the demon gone. Then he returned from the region of Tyre, and went by way of Sidon towards the Sea of Galilee, in the region of the Decapolis.

They brought to him a deaf man who had an impediment in his speech; and they begged him to lay his hand on him. He took him aside in private, away from the crowd, and put his fingers into his ears, and he spat and touched his tongue. Then looking up to heaven, he sighed and said to him, “Ephphatha,” that is, “Be opened.” And immediately his ears were opened, his tongue was released, and he spoke plainly. Then Jesus ordered them to tell no one; but the more he ordered them, the more zealously they proclaimed it. They were astounded beyond measure, saying, “He has done everything well; he even makes the deaf to hear and the mute to speak.” (-NRSV)

Why in the world would Jesus tell crowds and those restored not to tell what Jesus had done?
Reverse Psychology?
Forbidden Fruit?
People would only follow and believe if they received a physical blessing 1st hand.

(1) I will follow if you bless me.
(2) I will tell if you get us out of this jam. (3) I will be your disciple when I get something out of you first.

Discipleship comes before the blessing
Our culture is troubled with this, we want to a guarantee, we want our money’s worth. It is a contractual relationship. I give—I get. I beg—I receive,

Notice how Jesus takes the many with a speech impediment and moves in the house, into a private place, away from the crowds and drama.
• Jesus follows a medicinal method: touching his ears, spitting and touching his tongue,
• Jesus follows a spiritual method: looking up to heaven, he speaks release to the captive: Be open.

Be open to the spirit of God.
open to wholeness and faith.
open to the process, steps and stages. open to the power to change us. Be open.

The gift of knowledge we wish for all our students, be open. Be available, take what you have learned in private and go into the world that wants a show and its desserts. Be open to God’s touch, God’s word and God’s sending.

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