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Fifth Sunday after the Epiphany

February 8, 2009

Fifth Sunday After the Epiphany         
February 8, 2009                                   

                                                                                        + Jesu Juva +

St. Mark 1:29-31

“And immediately!”  That’s St. Mark for you.  Always an “immediately.”  Immediately this.  Immediately that.  Quickly moving us from Epiphany to the Lord’s Lenten suffering, His Good Friday death, and then immediately His Easter Sunday Resurrection.

Today’s Fifth Sunday after the Epiphany “immediately” takes us to Simon and Andrew’s house.  The boys have brought home some new friends.  James and John.  And with them the new preacher in town:  Jesus!  Yes, Jesus.  Holy One of God Jesus.  Who brings the kingdom of God on the earth.  Whom demons fear for He has come to destroy them.  Who comes to crush Satan’s head.  Who preaches and teaches God’s Word with authority like none other.  He’s been roaming all over the city of Capernaum.  And now Holy One of God Jesus insists on entering the lowly and little home of Simon and Andrew.     

"If only we had known you wanted to come here too Jesus!  The house is such a mess.  It’s bad enough that Simon’s mother-in-law lives here.  You know how mother-in-laws are.  But mother-in-law hasn’t had time to get the house ready.  She has a flu.  A terribly bad cough.  A high fever.  No strength to even get out of bed."

So we get another “immediately.” They tell Jesus about poor sick mother-in-law.  “Jesus, we know that a woman’s bed is no place for a man let alone the Holy One of God.  But we beg you.  Would you look in on mother-in-law?  She’s been under the weather.  Quite sick.  Very sick.  Death bed sick.”

And He does.  They clear a way to her bed.  Holy One of God Jesus goes right up to very, very, sick mother-in-law.  She is not only very, very sick but she is also very, very precious to Him.  He takes the time.  Goes right to her where she is. 

There is nothing more important in all the world than that He is right there for her.  With all that He is and all that He has.  He is there precisely for mother-in-law.  He takes her hand.  Raises her up.  And immediately the fever is gone.

And then another miracle!  Yes, another miracle.  Bigger than the healing perhaps.  Immediately after mother-in-law is healed, what does she do?   Does she doesn’t blurt out an ecstasy like, “Praise the Lord” or decide to join the Evangelism Board in order to frantically save the lost?  No.  Instead, she does the absolute unthinkable in our minds! 

She . . . puts on her apron, washes her hands, turns on the oven, sets the table, goes to the wine cellar, starts the coffee pot, and goes about preparing her best recipe!!!!!  She begins to serve them!!!! 

Why?  Because she knows to whom she is precious.  She knows to whom she belongs.  The reign of God has come to her in this Preacher that the boys and their new friends brought home.  The kingdom of God has come to this little and lowly house.  The reign of God’s kingdom has come to Simon’s mother-in-law. 

So, even with all her old age, the arthritis, and all the other aches and pains, she gets out the best china, lays out the linen tablecloth and the silver.  They have great joy together at the supper table.  “And she served them.”  That’s what the Holy One of God Fifth Sunday after the Epiphany Jesus does with her.  Mother-in-law is free to be there for them in her service.  Her best china.  Her best recipe.  Because she was precious to Him.  The kingdom of God had come to her with this Jesus whom the boys had brought home with them along with their brand new friends.

There is nothing more important in all the world than for Jesus to be here for you.  With all that He is and all that He has done.  Calvary.  Good Friday.  “It is finished.”  “You are forgiven.”  He is among us as one who serves.  The Son of Man came not to be served but to serve and to give His life as a ransom for many. 

The Holy One of God Fifth Sunday after the Epiphany Servant Jesus is among you today as He was Servant with mother-in-law.  Behold, He’s gathered you to His house.  And His table is all set.  Serving out His Body and His Blood given for you to eat and to drink.  His very best.  You too are precious.  Worth His giving His Body and His Blood into death for you.  Worth His giving out His Body with the bread and His Blood with the wine.  With His promise of forgiveness to raise you up for eternal life.  And your lives are never the same again.  For you too know to whom you are precious.

In the Name of Jesus.



From → "B" Sermons

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