Monday of week 6 of Ordinary Time – Gospel


Commentary on Mark 8:11-13

The Pharisees, disturbed by what Jesus is saying and doing, demand some ‘heavenly’ sign to indicate that his authority comes from God.  He refuses to acquiesce to their request.  They will not get a sign on their terms. 

The irony, of course, is that Jesus’ whole life is a sign, a sign of God’s loving presence among us.  In Mark, the ordinary people can see this clearly.  Only the leaders and – in Mark – Jesus’ own disciples are slow to learn.

In the immediately foregoing passage Jesus has just fed 4,000 people with seven loaves of bread and a few fish.  The signs are there in abundance but the Pharisees cannot see because they do not want to see.  Their blindness is a central theme to this part of Mark, as we shall see.

We too need to be aware of our own blindness and our failure to see the ‘signs’ of God’s love operating in our everyday lives.

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