The time is fulfilled, and the kingdom of God has come near; repent, and believe in the good news. Mark 1:15
God of the new and eternal covenant,
as the forty days of the great flood
swept away the world’s corruption
and watered new beginnings of righteousness
and life: grant to us, who are washed clean and
born again in the saving flood of baptism, the
wellspring of your grace,
through Jesus Christ our Redeemer,
who lives and reigns with you in the unity of the
Holy Spirit, one God, for ever and ever.
- Genesis 9:8-17
- Psalm 25:1-10
- 1 Peter 3:18-22
- Mark 1:9-15
- Genesis 17:1-7, 15-16
- Psalm 22:24-32
- Romans 4:13-25
- Mark 8:31-38
A Thought to Ponder
Lent 1 Mark 1:9-15
The Spirit drove Jesus out into the desert, and he remained in the desert for 40 days, tempted by Satan.
Every liturgical year, the Lenten season begins in the wilderness. Mark’s brief account of Jesus’ 40 days in the wilderness takes place immediately after Jesus’ baptism. “Driven by the Spirit,” Jesus’ going to the desert is an act of obedience to the Father. This is a time for contemplation and discernment regarding the tremendous task before him.
The word Satancomes from the Hebrew word for adversary. Satan serves as the “adversary” of God, advocating those values that contradict and oppose the love and mercy of God. Mark’s portrait of Jesus in the desert is one of a Messiah coming to terms with the paradox of the human condition.
Jesus begins his ministry in Galilee proclaiming “fulfillment”: God’s long-awaited promised Messiah has come.
These 40 days of Lent are the Spirit’s call to us to a “desert experience,” to re-connect with God, to dare to wonder if our lives are all they could and should be.
Lent calls us away from business as usual (the real motivation behind giving up one’s favourite confection or past time) in order to decide, in the depths of our hearts where God speaks to each one of us, what it means to be a person of faith, what values we want our lives to stand for, what path we want our lives to take on our journey to God and Easter resurrection.
As Jesus spent 40 days in the wilderness to discern what God was calling him to do with the next part of his life, Spirit calls us to our own “wilderness experience” to confront the hard choices we must make in our lives – choices between the values of God and the far lesser things of the world that can isolate us, hurt others and diminish God’s creation.
You can read the Pew Sheet hereLent-1-B