Mark 6:16

But when Herod heard of him, he said – “The man whom I beheaded – John – he must be risen!”


Marley’s ghost is claimed to be
a bit of undigested beef crumb of cheese
a mustard blob on an underdone potato
disordering Ebenezer’s stomach

John’s ghost is as easily discounted
see resurrection at work
reincarnating at the least a remorse
in the problem of the day

past as prelude to a next future
confuses direct cause and effect
with unintended consequences
leaving us all at sixes and sevens

we are dragged into repeating
past regrets and outright wrongs
with no negotiated settlement in sight
only being caught in yesterday’s loop


We have heard a couple of the rumors regarding Jesus. They associate him with the remembrance of prophets past. There is still power in those remembrances and we do well to hearken unto them in every age.

This is a potential hint about the identity of Jesus that keeps getting hung up on the Son of G*D/child of humans duality. Prophets also walk this line starting as children of humans.

What has been known as the Markan secret, since Jesus keeps telling people and partners not to tell, may end up being clarified by the end of this circular and ambiguous account.

For now, we each are in the midst of multiple story-lines. The Native Grandfather story of two wolves awaiting to see which we will feed is appropriate here. Which of the intersecting stories we live between will we give attention to?

Herod has chosen to continue dealing with the prophet he knows, John. This both empowers and endangers Jesus. When Jesus heard of the arrest of John he began his public engagement and advocacy for the poor and sick, the victims of oppression and conquest. As we embark upon hearing of John’s death, a part of our attention wonders about Jesus’ response to a beheading (didn’t that slip by easily—or did you have a small recoil at simply hearing that said in such an everyday manner?). If there wasn’t a moment of discomfort at bumping into that word you may have been reading too quickly.

Better to deal with John than Elijah—Signifier of Time’s End.

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