November 18, 2006

gospel according to mark 1:9-13

The arrival of Jesus

1:9-11 It was in those days that Jesus arrived from the Galilean village of Nazareth and was baptised by John in the Jordan. All at once, as he came up out of the water, he saw the heavens split open, and the Spirit coming down upon him like a dove. A voice came out of Heaven, saying, "You are my dearly-beloved Son, in whom I am well pleased!"

1:12-13 Then the Spirit sent him out at once into the desert, and there he remained for forty days while Satan tempted him. During this time no one was with him but wild animals, and only the angels were there to care for him.


At 9:14 a.m., Blogger forrest said...

To a Jew of the time, a few words of a biblical passage are enough to let him easily rattle off the rest. "You are my son, in whom I am well-pleased" is an echo of Psalm 2 (2.7 etc.):

"I will tell of the decree of the Lord;
He said to me, "You are my son,
today I have begotten you.

"Ask of me, and I will make the nations your heritage,
and the ends of the earth your possession.

"You shall break them with a rod of iron
and dash them to pieces like a potter's vessel."

(This last being probably a reference to shepherding rather than sheer destruction, although my informant who consulted the shepherd says that the shepherd's rod's way of comforting the sheep is by thumping anybody (not a shepherd) who wants to eat them.)

This psalm is a coronation psalm, used in the process of annointing a person King of Israel. We have a prophet, the greatest (and first) in some time, and we have Jesus, who hears these words. In some early versions of Luke, he hears precisely these words. (None of our copies of any of these gospels are anywhere near the actual time, as it happens.) Robert Graves caught the implication (and ground his own ax on it!), a few others; I think it was clear at the time.

When they leter ask Jesus where he gets his authority, he asks them to first say where John got his. They won't say, he won't. Yes, part of this is playing monkey dominance-politics ("Answer my question first!") but aside from saying, "God sent me," this is the humanly-derived authority he has for taking over the Temple.

Forty days in the wilderness. Matthew and Luke list the temptations on his mind; Mark doesn't but we may want to discuss this anyway?

At 10:12 a.m., Blogger david said...

Thanks for the Psalm reference -- I missed that one. I just posted the gospel references.


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