Faith Daily | 16 February 2021
PRAYER of the WEEK Ash Wednesday Prayer of the Season
Almighty and everlasting God,
you hate nothing that you have made,
and you forgive the sins of all who are penitent:
create and make in us new and contrite hearts,
that we, worthily lamenting our sins,
and acknowledging our wretchedness,
may obtain of you, the God of all mercy,
perfect remission and forgiveness;
through Jesus Christ our Lord.
Amen APBA p481
GOSPEL for the Day: Mark 8: 14-21
14Now the disciples had forgotten to bring any bread; and they had only one loaf with them in the boat. 15And he cautioned them, saying, “Watch out—beware of the yeast of the Pharisees and the yeast of Herod.” 16They said to one another, “It is because we have no bread.” 17And becoming aware of it, Jesus said to them, “Why are you talking about having no bread? Do you still not perceive or understand? Are your hearts hardened? 18Do you have eyes, and fail to see? Do you have ears, and fail to hear? And do you not remember? 19When I broke the five loaves for the five thousand, how many baskets full of broken pieces did you collect?” They said to him, “Twelve.” 20“And the seven for the four thousand, how many baskets full of broken pieces did you collect?” And they said to him, “Seven.” 21Then he said to them, “Do you not yet understand?”
GOSPEL Reflection: Contributed by Debbie Pringle
Jesus, possibly that very morning, had just fed 4000 men plus the women and children. Later on He was asked by the Pharisees for a sign. They must have heard of, and probably had seen many signs, but they refused to believe in Him. When Jesus started His ministry, they watched Him, then questioned and accused Him, and eventually, in chapter 3, plotted with the Herodians to kill Him.
As Jesus and His disciples travelled by boat, Jesus, I expect as usual, took the opportunity to teach them and said, “Beware of the yeast (leaven) of the Pharisees and that of Herod.”
Jews saw leaven as a symbol of evil. A small amount of leaven spreads, unseen, throughout the whole batch of dough. Jesus is warning against the corrupting, spreading influence of the Pharisees and Herod, whose hostility, hardness of heart and unbelief stopped them from seeing who Jesus is.
The disciples could only think about their lack of bread and they missed the point in what Jesus was saying. He reminds them of what He has done in the past, but still the penny didn’t drop. I think they, or a least some of them, realised that He was the Messiah, but they were blind to what that meant. In John chapter one, Phillip says that they (himself, Andrew and Peter) had found the one who Moses and the prophets spoke about, and Nathanael declares that Jesus is The Son of God, The King of Israel. In verse 29 of this chapter Peter states that Jesus is the Messiah. This was the third year of Jesus ministry and still the disciples couldn't see what type of Messiah Jesus was. His kingdom was not built on earthy power and greatness, but on humility, serving others, and self sacrifice.
Open my eyes that I may see Glimpses of truth thou hast for me Place in my hands the wonderful key That shall unclasp and set me free
Silently now I wait for thee Ready my God thy will to see Open my eyes, illumine me Spirit divine
Open my ears that I may hear Voices of truth thou sendest here And while the wind blows far on my ear Everything false will disappear
Silently now I wait for thee Ready my God, thy will to see Open my ears illumine me Spirit divine
Open my mouth and let me bear Gladly the warm truth everywhere Open my heart and let me prepare Love with thy Children thus to share
Silently now i wait thee Ready my God thy will to see Open my heart illumine me Spirit Divine