St. Mark 1: 14 – 28

November 29, 2022

14 Now after that John was put in prison, Jesus came into Galilee, preaching the gospel of the kingdom of God,

15 And saying, The time is fulfilled, and the kingdom of God is at hand: repent ye, and believe the gospel.

16 Now as he walked by the sea of Galilee, he saw Simon and Andrew his brother casting a net into the sea: for they were fishers.

17 And Jesus said unto them, Come ye after me, and I will make you to become fishers of men.

18 And straightway they forsook their nets, and followed him.

19 And when he had gone a little further thence, he saw James the son of Zebedee, and John his brother, who also were in the ship mending their nets.

20 And straightway he called them: and they left their father Zebedee in the ship with the hired servants, and went after him.

21 And they went into Capernaum; and straightway on the sabbath day he entered into the synagogue, and taught.

22 And they were astonished at his doctrine: for he taught them as one that had authority, and not as the scribes.

23 And there was in their synagogue a man with an unclean spirit; and he cried out,

24 Saying, Let us alone; what have we to do with thee, thou Jesus of Nazareth? art thou come to destroy us? I know thee who thou art, the Holy One of God.

25 And Jesus rebuked him, saying, Hold thy peace, and come out of him.

26 And when the unclean spirit had torn him, and cried with a loud voice, he came out of him.

27 And they were all amazed, insomuch that they questioned among themselves, saying, What thing is this? what new doctrine is this? for with authority commandeth he even the unclean spirits, and they do obey him.

28 And immediately his fame spread abroad throughout all the region round about Galilee.

I have read and heard that a certain portion of people, including people with letters after their names, believe that all the people the Bible claims had ‘unclean spirits’ were actually people who had mental illnesses. I don’t agree – probably because I don’t have letters after my name.

This is, of course, open to discussion. I support my understanding in this way: when Jesus healed the sick (of whatever sickness they had, mind you), the person never begged to be left alone or felt uniquely challenged by Jesus. It is only the people who were possessed by evil spirits who beg to be left alone in the same state Jesus found them in. Two supporting verses in Mark 5:7 “And cried with a loud voice, and said, What have I to do with thee, Jesus, thou Son of the most high God? I adjure thee by God, that thou torment me not.” and Mark 5:9 – “And he asked him, What is thy name? And he answered, saying, My name is Legion: for we are many.

All the other people Jesus healed were grateful when He approached and exuberant after their healing. The two can’t be confused, I don’t think; mental illness and possession.

As I said, I’m open to discussion on this but I’m pretty well convinced I’m right!


2 thoughts on “St. Mark 1: 14 – 28”

    1. Thanks! We can have a tendency to be too far into our own heads so it’s reassuring to think I’ve got my hat on straight.


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