ADVANTAGES

As a way into this I began some studying again of the Messianic secret in Mark, one of the themes of which I am frequently asked in our new members group when people read the gospel for the first time. The silence is so counter-intuitive in a publicity seeking age. When you are after YouTube views and Facebook likes, why would any Messiah want the leper he has healed not to tell anyone (Mark 1:44). If you want a religious movement to gain some traction, a healed leper is going to be of some use. And why repeatedly tell people to be quiet when this seems to have precisely the opposite effect – the more he told them to be quiet the more they spoke (Mark 7:36) – why does Jesus even bother to tell people to be quiet if the effect is to be precisely the opposite. Nothing makes a secret travel more quickly than telling people it’s a secret.

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