In next Sunday’s lectionary there is a story from Mark’s account of the Good News about Jesus teaching in the synagogue in Capernaum. As I was discussing the story in a Zoom meeting with colleagues I noticed that the Greek word that was translated as taught might be better rendered as was teaching.
That might seem to be unimportant but I think Mark’s choice of the Greek tense wasn’t accidental. For Mark Jesus’ teaching was ongoing. It didn’t happen just once; it happened all the way to Calvary and beyond. It is still happening.
Over the years there have been moments when it was clear that there were lessons I needed. Most often they came when I saw something in Scripture that I hadn’t noticed before, but there were times when something a friend said delivered the lesson that I needed.
Some of those lessons took years for me to receive. When I was in first grade I was asked to read a sentence that included the word nowhere. When I read it as now here my classmates laughed. If they hadn’t laughed I would probably not have remembered that moment. Years late as I thought about that moment I saw that the memory contains an important lessen. I need to be now here or I will be nowhere. If I don’t pay attention I will miss what Jesus wants to teach me.