Opened Ears and Loosened Tongues

Biblical Text: Mark 7:31-37
Full Draft of Sermon

It was rally day at church this week. For those who might not know, that is the day we install the Sunday School teachers for the year and try and “rally” everyone back from the summer’s diversion.

It also turns into something of a mission festival. Rally Day doesn’t just issue a call to return to church, but issues a call to be witnesses. The lesson is the healing of a deaf and mute man. Jesus’ miracles, in John’s gospel called signs, almost always point to something greater. They might be signs of his being the messiah. They might be signs point to his Godhood. They might also be signs of the disciples or our own spiritual state, or our calling. I think that is what is happening with this miracle. It does function as a sign to Jesus being the messiah. That is why the OT Isaiah lesson was matched up with this Gospel text. But in the context – which the sermon proclaims – they are also a sign to the opening of new ears and a call for tongues to the loosened. Rally Day calls for ears to be opened – come back to the sabbath and the Word. Rally Day also calls for tongues to be loosened – teachers installed and witness in the community renewed.

When ears have been opened, not even Jesus could stop tongues from proclaiming the grace received. That is the call to us. Are our ears open? Are our tongues ready to proclaim?

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