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Dig Deep!

The time has come. . . and the Kingdom of God is close at hand. Repent and believe in the Good News
Jonah 3:1-5,10; Psalm 25:4-9; I Corinthians 7:29-31; Mark 1:14-20

Sermon Week Third Sunday in Ordinary Time Cycle B

Scripture Summary Mark 1:14-15

Carved in wood over the door of a Church in Ohio are the words, "Enter at your own risk." Consider the meaning of those words:

When you seek to experience the Presence of God by following Jesus Christ, it should be with the understanding that your life may never again be the same.

In today's Lesson, Jesus begins asking people to leave everything behind and follow Him. He leaves no doubt in their minds that they will be entering into a whole new way of life. If they would follow Him, they must be willing to change radically. To become His disciples, they must be willing to reorder their priorities. The old routines, the old attachments, the old values would have to give way to the new life he was calling them to. They must be willing to dig deep and root out anything and everything that might be blocking the flow of the Divine Presence within them. In a word, they must be willing to "Repent."

In James Michener's novel about South Africa, there is a scene in which some people are digging in yellow clay near the surface of the soil. In the yellow clay, they discover some diamonds, and they rejoice in their new-found wealth. They continue scratching around in the yellow clay and, for a considerable time, find even more diamonds. Then, one of them suggests digging deeper. As they break through the layer of yellow clay, they enter a layer of blue clay where the diamonds are so plentiful that their earlier finds seem insignificant. In the blue clay, they discover more diamonds in one day than they had found in a whole year of digging in the yellow clay.

"Repent and believe in the Gospel," Jesus said to those first disciples. Now, as then, these words have profound meaning for our lives. Now, as then, we cannot answer the call to discipleship on the level of superficiality. Now, as then, we who would follow Jesus have got to stop scratching the surface. Now, as then, we must be willing to relinquish whatever it [...]


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