Mark 1:21-28 – The 4th Sunday after Epiphany â€“ for February 1, 2015
â€œThe people were amazed by his teaching, for he was teaching them with authority . . .â€ (Mark 1:22)
It was in a college class in 1973 when one of my speech communication professors recalled Martin Luther Kingâ€™s appearance at a rally in the mid-â€˜60s.
The professor was white, highly educated, and had been raised in Depression-era Texas. He described, as he lectured to his students, the remarkable reactions heâ€™d witnessed as King inspired the crowd. There were men and women, young and old, poorly and richly dressed, black and white (along with the other colors humans are labeled with); some sat and others stood while all pressed against their neighbor as they listened.
And they all seemed to be listening. Thatâ€™s what amazed this professor, a dispassionate evaluator of speeches and debates. At some point, he had reluctantly shifted from Kingâ€™s riveting words to study those near him. King had captured the attention of every listener.
King spoke with authority.
Kingâ€™s wordsâ€”his truths, hopes, dreams, metaphors, stories, confessions, criticisms, and challengesâ€”seemed to impact and impress each individual. One smiled. Another nodded. The next wept. There was cheering, clapping, amens!, and hugs. Continue reading →