“He began to send them out.”
Again it is prophecy that is our theme (see last week). Here, we concentrate on the sending of prophets, the entrusting of the mission to them, and most importantly the necessary qualifications to be a prophet. The only qualification necessary is an open ear, to hear the mandate from God. We see this in Amos, the simple shepherd, and in the Twelve, called by Jesus from their humble occupations, which no one would have thought qualified them to speak on ‘religious’ themes. As last week, the possibility of rejection and failure is quite explicitly treated ‑ Jesus instructs the Apostles in what to do if they are ignored. When the Gospel simply states, “So they set off to preach repentance…” we can imagine all that was in their minds and hearts as they did so. They had heard the call of Jesus, and allowed it into their hearts: this was all they needed to go out and speak his words.
I will hear what the Lord has to say, a voice that speaks of peace, peace for his people. His help is near for those who fear him and his glory will dwell in our land. Mercy and faithfulness have met; justice and peace have embraced. Faithfulness shall spring from the earth and justice look down from heaven. The Lord will make us prosper and our earth shall yield its fruit. Justice shall march before him and peace shall follow his steps.
First Reading: Amos 7:12-15
Second Reading: Ephesians 1:3-14
Gospel Reading: Mark 6: 7-13