Reflecting on Mark 1: 40-45
Sometimes a different translation of a text comes closer to the way we think of Jesus. For example, according to the NAB (New American Bible), when the leper professes his faith that, if Jesus wills it, he could cure him of leprosy, Jesus is “moved with pity” and says, “I do will it.”
That’s nice. But I LOVE the NIV (New International Version) translation of the same scene. This time, after the leper professes his faith that if Jesus wills it he could be cured, Mark 1: 41 says, “Jesus was indignant.” Don’t you like that Jesus so much better?
Imagine if your child, miserable with an earache, said, “Mom, if you wanted to you could make me feel better!” You’d be moved with pity, sure, but I’ll bet you’d also be indignant, wondering how your child could possibly think you wouldn’t want him to feel better immediately.
Heck, the CEB (Common English Bible) even says Jesus was incensed at the question! I like that the best of all. I love the image of Jesus as the One whose love for us is so deep—and his presence in our lives so intimate and near—that he is incensed that we would wonder whether he wants to heal us.
In still another translations Jesus says, “Of course I will it.” The God of heaven chose earth so that he could be one with us in our illnesses, our sufferings, and our deaths. He wants to heal us so desperately that, like the Hound of Heaven, he seeks us in out-of-the-way roads, and busy urban thoroughfares, just so we can find him. Why aren’t all healed? We don’t know. But it’s not because Jesus doesn’t will it.
What healing do you need? How can the Body of Christ help you?
Kathy McGovern ©2021