Monday, August 31, 2009

It's All About Me

Mark 1:41-45 "Moved with pity, he stretched out his hand and touched him and said to him, "I will; be clean."  And immediately the leprosy left him, and he was made clean.  And Jesus sternly charged him and sent him away at once, and said to him, "See that you say nothing to anyone, but go, show yourself to the priest and offer for your cleansing what Moses commanded, for a proof to them."  But he went out and began to talk freely about it, and to spread the news, so that Jesus could no longer openly enter a town, but was out in desolate places, and people were coming to him from every quarter."

This amazes me.  A man is healed and Jesus tells him not to tell anyone.  This doesn't mesh with what "I think" would be the right move.  I mean Jesus could get major brownie points for heling this man.  People would see his power and know he's God!  But...alas...Jesus is much more wise than I am .... Jesus knows what is in a man.  Jesus wanted the man to be silent so that God the Father would receive the glory due Him, v. 44"...See that you say nothing to anyone, BUT go show yourself to the priest and offer for your cleansing what Moses commanded, for a proof to them."  Jesus wanted God the Father to receive the glory and not himself.  He also, knowing the heart of man, knew the self-centeredness of man.   Verse 46 tells us "Jesus could no longer openly enter a town..." now again, that just doesn't make sense to me! if this man went and told others about Jesus healing him wouldn't this be good publicity for Jesus and the gospel campaign?  

The ESV study bible explains why it wasn't...

"The joy of the healed man overrides Jesus' injunction to silence and therefore Jesus could no longer enter a town, lest he be mobbed.  So Jesus cannot stay hidden. Mark often emphasizes how the crowds' excessive attention to Jesus' miracles is a frequent problem, causing the crowds to miss the true purpose of his ministry (i.e., to proclaim the good news of the kingdom."

We are often like the man healed of leprosy.  In our excitement we go and tell others of what God is doing in our lives (a great thing to do!) however, sometimes,  along the way our proclamation of God's work in our lives becomes more about us getting attention then God receiving glory. Ouch...

Jesus told the man not to tell anyone b/c he knows the heart of a man.  Our hearts want what Jesus can do for us more then him.  The large crowds were a hinderance to Christ because they were seeking him for His miracles rather then for He was ... the Messiah, Immanuel, the Christ, our Savior.

May our lives be less about what we can get from Jesus and more about Jesus. 

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