Mark 9:25

But, when Jesus saw that a crowd was quickly collecting, he rebuked the foul spirit, “Deaf and dumb spirit, it is I who command you. Come out from him and never enter him again.”

it’s show time
in no time flat
wilderness retreat turns
a crowded-around test

we’ve made our claim
extravagant as it seems
and been called on it
time for a big voice

loudness brings out harshness
no second chance
no bargaining
out damned spot

not only out
but away
never to return
that’s that

If prayer is needed for this healing, Jesus prays in a scolding, rebuking tone—“Come out! Go away!” This is not, “Now I lay me down to sleep. I pray….”

Myers112 says this is the first of three invitations to pray in Mark:

One is after his dramatic Temple action, when he urges the disciples to believe in the possibility of a world free of the exploitative Temple-state (11:23–25). The Other is just before Jesus is seized by security forces, when he summons his followers to prayer as a way of “staying awake” to the Way of the cross (14:32–42).

Myers goes on to claim:

This episode suggests that prayer is the contemplative discipline of self-knowledge—an invitation to examine the roots of our impotence. If we wish to cast out this demon we must engage in the difficult process of confronting the illusions that paralyze us and the unconscious power of repressed trauma that keeps us silent.

Finally Myers115 leads us to: “deepen our prayer life in order to follow him, he is calling us to develop a spirituality of social action.” Different contexts, individuals and communities help us: “explore and develop a prayer life that empowers…public discipleship.”

Given the deep requirement for order that every “principality and power” demands, public discipleship will seem as crude and rebukeful as the harshness of this prayer. Accusations and consequences will follow this model of prayer that will lead to choices of trust. Galston154 is important here: “Religion remains fundamentally community centered, and in this respect it remains counter-intuitive in a libertarian age.”—Common Good v. Individual Freedom. Pray well.

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