Friday, February 20, 2015

She began to serve them

When I left home for work this morning, it was -18 degrees.  See the minus sign?  18 degrees below zero.  As my iPhone says when I ask Siri the temperature outside, "Brrrrrrr."


In the beginning of the Gospel of Mark, Jesus goes to Simon and Andrew's house and heals Simon's mother-in-law.
Now Simon's mother-in-law was in bed with a fever, and they told him about her at once.  He came and took her by the hand and lifted her up. Then the fever left her, and she began to serve them.  (Mark 1:30-31)
It's a common assumption, I think, that when the Gospel says, "she began to serve them," that it means she started to do "housewifely" duties - cooking, feeding them, caring for them.  And that could very well be what it means.

But what if it means something else?  According to V. Bruce Rigdon, in Disciples 2015, "The verb used for serve in this case eventually led the church to describe those who served as deacons."  Is there an additional implication here?  Could it be that when she was healed of her fever, she was also changed?  That her healing was more complete than just a medical one, but was also a spiritual one? That what she experienced was dramatic enough that she began to live her life as Jesus lived his?  In service to others?  Could she, at that moment, have become a disciple?  Not one of the twelve, but a follower of Jesus who served others, and became deacon-like?



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