“If I could only have been there…” Did you ever wish you could have been among those who actually encountered Jesus in person; mingled with those throngs beside the lake; feasted among the five thousand in a Galilean meadow; crowded along the village street as the carpenter from Nazareth passed by?
The Gospels remind us that as Jesus walked the road toward Jerusalem, crowds gathered along the way. Those crowds consisted of individuals, each one of them seeking, in his or her own way, to form a relationship with Jesus. Some of them—most unnamed—have been immortalized by the gospel writers; yet, unique as each one was, they shared with the rest of those clamoring crowds the same basic human impulses and inhibitions, dreams and terrors that we know today.
Join us for worship as we meet The Faithful Father as our Lenten series, Faces by the Wayside, continues.
Mark 9:14-27, NRSV
14When they came to the disciples, they saw a great crowd around them, and some scribes arguing with them. 15When the whole crowd saw him, they were immediately overcome with awe, and they ran forward to greet him. 16He asked them, “What are you arguing about with them?” 17Someone from the crowd answered him, “Teacher, I brought you my son; he has a spirit that makes him unable to speak; 18and whenever it seizes him, it dashes him down; and he foams and grinds his teeth and becomes rigid; and I asked your disciples to cast it out, but they could not do so.” 19He answered them, “You faithless generation, how much longer must I be among you? How much longer must I put up with you? Bring him to me.” 20And they brought the boy to him. When the spirit saw him, immediately it convulsed the boy, and he fell on the ground and rolled about, foaming at the mouth. 21Jesus asked the father, “How long has this been happening to him?” And he said, “From childhood. 22It has often cast him into the fire and into the water, to destroy him; but if you are able to do anything, have pity on us and help us.” 23Jesus said to him, “If you are able! —All things can be done for the one who believes.” 24Immediately the father of the child cried out, “I believe; help my unbelief!” 25When Jesus saw that a crowd came running together, he rebuked the unclean spirit, saying to it, “You spirit that keeps this boy from speaking and hearing, I command you, come out of him, and never enter him again!” 26After crying out and convulsing him terribly, it came out, and the boy was like a corpse, so that most of them said, “He is dead.” 27But Jesus took him by the hand and lifted him up, and he was able to stand.