“You are the Christ.” “The Son of Man is destined to suffer grievously.”
As we follow through the Gospel of Saint Mark we come to an important turning point this week: after the preaching, the miracles and the journey so far, Simon Peter publicly recognises Jesus as the Messiah. But there is an important point, which is brought out by the choice of first reading today: this Messiah is a king who is destined to be rejected and killed. Jesus knows this very well, and rebukes Peter when he tries to lead him on a different path. From this point on, Saint Mark’s Gospel leads to the cross: Jesus himself accepts his own cross, and reminds all his followers that the cross is a part of following him. If we are considering the question ”Who is Jesus?”, these scripture passages give us a deep insight into the mission of salvation that he accepts for us.
I love the Lord for he has heard the cry of my appeal; for he turned his ear to me in the day when I called him. They surrounded me, the snares of death, with the anguish of the tomb; they caught me, sorrow and distress. I called on the Lord’s name. O Lord my God, deliver me! How gracious is the Lord, and just; our God has compassion. The Lord protects the simple hearts; I was helpless so he saved me. He has kept my soul from death, my eyes from tears and my feet from stumbling. I will walk in the presence of the Lord in the land of the living
First Reading: Isaiah 50: 5-9
Second Reading: Js 2: 14-18
Gospel Reading: Mark 8: 27-35