Bible Workbench: Proper 24, October 18, 2009

Text: Mark 10:35-45

Are you able to drink the cup that I drink, or be baptized with the baptism that I am baptized with?  What is this cup and this baptism? At the beginning of Mark’s gospel,  John announces a baptism in the Holy Spirit (1:7); later, in the Garden of Gesthemane, Jesus prays that the cup be removed (14:36). Picture this cup and this baptism. What do these particular metaphors express about what Jesus and his followers will face? What is desirable about the cup and the baptism? What might they demand that would be difficult, if not impossible, to give or experience? What might James and John be thinking as Jesus is saying this? What might Jesus be thinking as he hears them say “We are able”?

– Andy Kille


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