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A Lenten Journey of Release & Renewal (Day Two)




Day Two



Scripture: Mark 1:21-28, NRSV

They went to Capernaum; and when the sabbath came, he entered the synagogue and taught. They were astounded at his teaching, for he taught them as one having authority, and not as the scribes. Just then there was in their synagogue a man with an unclean spirit, and he cried out, ‘What have you to do with us, Jesus of Nazareth? Have you come to destroy us? I know who you are, the Holy One of God.’ But Jesus rebuked him, saying, ‘Be silent, and come out of him!’ And the unclean spirit, throwing him into convulsions and crying with a loud voice, came out of him. They were all amazed, and they kept on asking one another, ‘What is this? A new teaching—with authority! He commands even the unclean spirits, and they obey him.’ At once his fame began to spread throughout the surrounding region of Galilee.


Observation:


Image: "unclean" Rae's office


Even within the synagogue, the holiest space in the village, there was an unclean spirit present. According to Jewish Law, nothing unclean was permitted to worship God, requiring individuals to cleanse themselves before entering the synagogue. So why was the person with an 'unclean' spirit there? What does this signify?


Perhaps it suggests that despite adhering to all the proper rituals for purifying their bodies, some individuals still failed to cleanse their hearts and minds. The 'unclean' spirit permeates within us, around us, and among us.


This brings to mind what Apostle Paul said in his letter to the Corinthians:


'Or do you not know that your body is a temple of the Holy Spirit within you, which you have from God, and that you are not your own? For you were bought with a price; therefore, glorify God in your body' (1 Corinthians 6:19-20, NRSV).


I recognize that my heart is a mess, much like my office. There are too many unclean thoughts and desires within me.


May the Spirit of God dwell in me and create a clean heart.




Application:

  1. How clean and organized is your heart today?

  2. What are the things that need to be “cleaned up” in your life?



Prayer / Reflection:





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