sexta-feira, 10 de março de 2017


Jesus commanded them not to tell anyone.
But the more he did so,
the more they kept talking about it.
Mark 7:36 (read 7:31-37) – NIV

Jesus never did what others expected of him. Those who brought the deaf mute to be healed tried to tell Jesus how to do the cure, by the laying on of hands. They were expecting Jesus to do something spectacular in front of the crowd. But Jesus did it his own way and not according to popular expectations. He left the crowd and went away with the man and dealt with him in an unprecedented way according to his needs.

They couldn’t mold Jesus into their pattern. He went beyond established structures and frustrated expectations. Today we still use dogmas and theological definitions to try to reduce Jesus to the size of human understanding. In reality he goes way beyond the boundaries of Christianity as churches try to define them.

Jesus respected human dignity. He did not let the deaf mute become an object of curiosity and public spectacle. He took him out of the crowd and dealt with him in a discreet place. Respect and discretion were always the marks of Jesus. He did not seek publicity. His contacts were direct, person to person. Many churches are infected with a commercialist spirit and adopt the philosophy that advertising is the soul of business. They seek to play up the marvelous things by making them publicly known through mega-churches and movements and by selling packaged spirituality. In contrast, Jesus asked not to tell anyone. The healing itself conveyed the message.

For Jesus, "announcing the good news" was not to promote an advertising campaign. It was to live in solidarity, without pretensions of grandeur and without calling attention to oneself. It was to act unseen like salt and yeast, within the dough. If our lives and our deeds do not speak for themselves our advertising is misleading. Advertising, both secular and religious, is always misleading, because it exalts benefits while hiding the negative. The fame of Jesus grew by spontaneous testimony by those who were benefited. Jesus was never a promoter.

Christianity today employs "promotion mechanisms”. It projects a positive image through sumptuous buildings and showy publications that report their deeds and disclose their activities. Rarely do its works speak for themselves. We know of the projects by propaganda rather than by spontaneous testimony from the mouths of the benefited.

Let's imagine this scenario: all churches outlawed with all religious temples demolished or turned into museums and theaters, all religious publications banned, all media secularized and all concentrations of a religious nature prohibited. How would we live and share our faith?

It would help us rediscover the value of fraternal coexistence and compassionate relationships. We would find that the banned things are secondary and that we could live our faith without them. We would be forced to let our quality of life and its fruit speak for themselves. We would go back to basics and minister as Jesus ministered and "proclaim the good news" through concrete acts of love. That is what it means to live the Kingdom.

Thy Kingdom come…….!


Then Jesus left the vicinity of Tyre and went through Sidon, down to the Sea of Galilee and into the region of the Decapolis. There some people brought to him a man who was deaf and could hardly talk, and they begged Jesus to place his hand on him.

After he took him aside, away from the crowd, Jesus put his fingers into the man’s ears. Then he spit and touched the man’s tongue. He looked up to heaven and with a deep sigh said to him, “Ephphatha!” (which means “Be opened!”). At this, the man’s ears were opened, his tongue was loosened and he began to speak plainly.

Jesus commanded them not to tell anyone. But the more he did so, the more they kept talking about it. People were overwhelmed with amazement. “He has done everything well,” they said. “He even makes the deaf hear and the mute speak.”

Nenhum comentário: