29th Sunday in Ordinary Time - B - October 17, 2021
In Isaiah 53, we met the image of the "Suffering Servant," the one who would suffer for the good of the community. Through his suffering, God would reward him and his people.
10 Yet it pleased YHWH to bruise him.
He has caused him to suffer.
When you make his soul an offering for sin,
he shall see his seed.
He shall prolong his days,
and the pleasure of YHWH shall prosper in his hand.
11 After the suffering of his soul,
he will see the light and be satisfied.
My righteous servant will justify many by the knowledge of himself;
and he will bear their iniquities.
33 praised God, not for what he could do for us, but simply for who he is. God is God and, for that reason, deserves our praise.
1 Rejoice in YHWH, you righteous!
Praise is fitting for the upright.
2 Give thanks to YHWH with the lyre.
Sing praises to him with the harp of ten strings.
3 Sing to him a new song.
Play skillfully with a shout of joy!
4 For the word of YHWH is right.
All his work is done in faithfulness.
5 He loves righteousness and justice.
The earth is full of the loving kindness of YHWH.
6 By YHWH's word, the heavens were made;
all their army by the breath of his mouth.
7 He gathers the waters of the sea together as a heap.
He lays up the deeps in storehouses.
8 Let all the earth fear YHWH.
Let all the inhabitants of the world stand in awe of him.
9 For he spoke, and it was done.
He commanded, and it stood firm.
10 YHWH brings the counsel of the nations to nothing.
He makes the thoughts of the peoples to be of no effect.
11 The counsel of YHWH stands fast forever,
the thoughts of his heart to all generations.
12 Blessed is the nation whose God is YHWH,
the people whom he has chosen for his own inheritance.
13 YHWH looks from heaven.
He sees all the sons of men.
14 From the place of his habitation he looks out on all the inhabitants of the earth,
15 he who fashions all of their hearts;
and he considers all of their works.
16 There is no king saved by the multitude of an army.
A mighty man is not delivered by great strength.
17 A horse is a vain thing for safety,
neither does he deliver any by his great power.
18 Behold, YHWH's eye is on those who fear him,
on those who hope in his loving kindness;
19 to deliver their soul from death,
to keep them alive in famine.
20 Our soul has waited for YHWH.
He is our help and our shield.
21 For our heart rejoices in him,
because we have trusted in his holy name.
22 Let your loving kindness be on us, YHWH,
since we have hoped in you.
The letter to the Hebrews gives us comfort. We have a High Priest, a heavenly advocate, before God the Father in the person of Jesus Christ. Our relationship with him gives us the "inside track" to the Father.
14 We have a High Priest who went back to God in heaven. He is Jesus, the Son of God. So, we should hang onto what we believe about him. 15 After all, we do not have a High Priest who is not able to understand our weaknesses. Jesus was tempted in every way we could be tempted. Yet, he is without sin. 16 So, we can go to the throne of God's help. There, we can receive his mercy and quickly find his kind help.
14 Having, then, a great high priest having gone throughout the heavens, Jesus, the Son of God, we should hold onto our confession (about Jesus). 15 For we do not have a High Priest not able to empathize with our weaknesses, but having been tempted in every (way), in the same way (we are), (but) without sin. 16 We can come, then, with boldness to the throne of grace, so that we might receive mercy, and we might find grace in timely help.
In Mark's , John and James sought a position of leadership when Jesus would come into his (presumed earthly) glory. The question they asked was a test of their character, and an opportunity to learn what real discipleship means.
35 James and John, the sons of Zebedee, came up to Jesus and said. "Teacher, we want you to do us a favor."
36 "What is it?" Jesus replied.
37 "Let us sit right next to you, on your right and left sides, when you become king," they answered.
38 "You really don't know what your asking for," Jesus said. "Are you able to drink from the cup that I drink or be dunked in the baptism I am dunked in?"
39 "Yes!" they eagerly replied.
40 "Well, you will drink from the cup I drink. And you will be dunked in the baptism I am dunked in," Jesus told them. "But I am not going to tell anyone they can sit on my right or left sides in the Kingdom. Those seats are reserved for the people who have been prepared by God."
41 When the other ten followers heard the discussion, they became very angry at James and John. 42 So, Jesus said "Come here, everyone! You know that the people who all point to as the leaders of world use power to make sure everyone knows they are in charge. Great people use power over the people they rule. 43 But, it's not like that with you. Whoever wants to have a great reputation among you must act as your servant. 44 Whoever wants to lead must be the slave of all. 45 For even the Son of Man did not come so others could serve him. No, he came to serve all and give up his life so people could be free!"
35 James and John, the sons of Zebedee, approached HIM, saying to HIM, "TEACHER, we wish that YOU will do for us what we ask (of) YOU." 36 HE said to them, "What do you wish [of] ME] that I will do for you?" 37 They said to him, "Grant to us that, one (of us) on YOUR right and one (of us) on YOUR left, we might sit (beside YOU) in YOUR glory." 38 JESUS said to them, "You do not know what you ask (for). Are you able to drink the cup which I drink or to be baptized in the baptism which I am baptized?" 39 They said to HIM, "We are able." JESUS said to them, "The cup which I drink, you will drink, and the baptism in which I am baptized, you will be baptized in. 40 To sit on my right or my left is not MINE to give, but to whom it has been prepared."
41 Having heard (the discussion), the (other) ten began to become angry at James and John. 42 Having called them towards (HIMSELF), JESUS said to them, "You know that the ones regarded as rulers of the nations show mastery over them and their great men exercise authority over them. 43 It is not thus among you. But, whoever might want to become great among you will be your servant, 44 and whoever might want to be the first will be the slave of all. 45 For even the SON OF MAN not come to serve, but to serve and to give HIS life (as a) ransom in behalf of many."