Sign Language: Mark 7: 31-37

Mark 7: 31-37

Jesus does a whole series of things with the deaf and mute man:  He takes him away from the crowd; he points to his ears; he then touches his own tongue, takes his own saliva, and puts it on the main’s tongue; he looks up, sighs, and says, “Be opened!”  You might say, “Well, Jesus is doing the rituals of a miracle worker.”  Actually, no:  Remember that in every miracle we have witnessed, from calming the storm to the healing of the Syrophoenician woman’s daughter, there was no arm-waving, no mumbo-jumbo.  Jesus obviously does not need to perform a ritual in order to summon his power.  

Jesus is doing all this not because he needs it but because the man needs it. All the touching of his ears, touching his mouth — it is sign language. Jesus is saying, “Let’s go over here; don’t be afraid, I am going to do something about that; now let’s look to God.”  Jesus comes into the man’s cognitive world and uses terms — nonverbal speech — that he can understand.  

Isaiah 35: 4-6 say,” Your God will come… he will come to save you.  Then will the eyes of the blind be opened and the ears of the deaf unstopped.  Then will the lame leap like a deer, and the mute tongue shout for joy.”

Mark is saying:  Do you see the blind opening their eyes?  Do you see the deaf hearing, do you hear the mute tongue shouting for joy?  God has come, just as Isaish 35 promised’ God has come to save you.  Jesus Christ is God come to save us.  Jesus is the Kong.

Note from King’s Cross: Understanding the Life and Death of Jesus

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