Fr Paul reads from the Gospel of Mark (12: 35-37) in which, while teaching in the temple, Jesus is asked, ‘Why do the teachers of the Law say that the Christ is the Son of David?’
As Fr Paul mentioned earlier in the week, a variety of controversies are being experienced in our Gospels this week. Some of these controversies were started by the Pharisees and Herodian’s; some by the Sadducees and the scribes. In this particular Gospel, the controversy is started by Jesus and it is a bit of a puzzle: The father is greater than the son, so how can David call the Messiah my Lord? Is not the Messiah to be the Son of David? This is the puzzle Jesus speaks of.
We need to be mindful that Jesus avoided the title ‘Son of David’ because it was associated with politics and the driving out of the Romans, who were occupying the country at that time.
Jesus would fulfil the prophecies about the ‘Son of David’ by being a shepherd, a representative of the Lord, who would guard and guide and care for his sheep. He would not fulfil the prophecies by being an all-conquering King, who drives out the enemy.
Mindful of this as we pause today for our prayer, Fr Paul says, we might reflect over the Gospel and ponder the puzzle Jesus presents in it.