Sunday, February 26, 2012

Mark 1:9–15

I've been trying to imagine how Jesus felt right after his baptism. The heavens were torn open, the Spirit of God alighted on him in the form of a dove, and that voice from heaven declared, "You are my Son, the beloved; with you I am well pleased."

Whatever Jesus was feeling, he didn't have long to enjoy it. "And the Spirit immediately drove him out into the wilderness," Mark says. The Spirit didn't drive him in an SUV, we suspect, or even in a Prius. Matthew and Luke soften the verb; they say the Spirit of God "led" Jesus into the wilderness. There is no such gentleness in Mark. Jesus is expelled into the wilderness—so much for being God's beloved son.


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