Mark 11:7

Then they brought the foal to Jesus, and, when they had laid their cloaks on it, he seated himself on it.


having gone one mile out
to gather a basic resource
there is no reason not to
come an extra mile back
and add value

of course afterward
we will boast
how high he sat
regally perched atop
our humble cloak


The versification here seems to have been caught up in Mark’s breathless style as the first line (7a) would make a fine end to the plan Jesus laid out to have a symbolic vehicle of peace (contrasted with a mighty war horse) on which to enter and restore a place fallen from its heritage as a “city of peace (harmony/wholeness/health/safety)”.

7b then leads us to the next round of symbols—garments, clothes that represent people’s lives being laid down in service, suffering.

In all of this, Jesus begins the process but soon disappears from it. Of more importance than himself at this point are the symbols used.

With Bartimaeus following and symbols beginning to pile up in a theater of the absurd, whatever value a Messianic Secret might have had, it is now past.

The first to offer a sign of their life in service are the two disciples who fetched the unridden colt. Something in their adventure shifted their attention. There is another shift here from Baptizer John saying one more powerful than he would come and these disciples saying, with their clothes, that one more powerful than they had come. Somewhere in Mark’s relating Jesus’ journey there is a commitment to do more than mysteriously follow.

This action by two disciples, that will get picked up by the still affirmative crowd, asks Mark’s readers about their own turning point. What sign will commit them to also enter Jerusalem as an anti-king, a restorer of hope in whatever current Mad Max scene of gratuitous violence is still proceeding in unending flow.

After all the time of witnessing healings, feedings, calmings, teachings, and other high moments, there is something about participating that makes a difference. Whenever people go out two-by-two, a difference is made. Who is your current buddy in difference-making?

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