In calling his first disciples to fish for people, Jesus knows they can’t do that from where they are. But he has already chosen them for who they are.


Jesus calls these particular nobodies to give up everything
Epiphany 3B | Mark 1:14-20

Nobodies

Most stories have great opening lines.

“If you are interested in stories with happy endings, you would be better off reading some other book.”
“Mother died today. Or maybe yesterday; I can’t be sure.”
“All this happened, more or less.”

or, seriously, this one:

“As Gregor Samsa awoke one morning from uneasy dreams he found himself transformed in his bed into an enormous insect.”

Great stories open and reveal before we know what we’re taking in.

Popular musicians put the best song first.

Those of us of a certain age remember playing one CD over and over that winter after the Christmas of 1991. That big, ballistic ode to youth and dysfunction, Nirvana’s Nevermind opened with a song no one could escape at that moment: “Smells Like Teen Spirit”. One of the greatest openings to an album in rock history.

Star Wars had the kind of opening. The John Williams score forcefully opens: it resounds and overwhelms. Inescapable and emotive. And just as your heart begins to pound, the words stream across the screen, telling you the backstory, situating you in a time. Quick, read them, make sense of them, they’re disappearing before they reach the top of the screen…

The scope and scale of the world are beyond measure.

And then somehow, we’re plopped down on a desert planet with a teenage boy hoping to escape this nothingness. So odd to stare at the slowness and nothingness of Tatooine after being thrown into a galaxy far, far away.

This is the same style the evangelist we know as Mark uses to open his masterwork. The size and scope of that declaration: this is the Good News, a quote from Isaiah, then introducing John the Baptizer.

The full text and audio may be downloaded above or here.