Thursday, February 18, 2010

The High Priest Leper

Another Mark 14 thought:

Upon hearing Jesus' "confession," the high priest tears his clothes. Not only is it forbidden in the law for the high priests to tear their clothes (Lev. 10:6, 21:10), but it is required that lepers go about with torn clothes. As the high priest cries out "blasphemy!" he inadvertently dons the uniform of a leper who was to tear his clothes and cry out "unclean!" (Lev. 13:45)

All this on the heels of Jesus' inspection of the temple for leprosy (compare Mk. 11:11-13:2 with Lev. 14:33-45). And meanwhile Jesus is lodging at the house of Simon the leper (Mk. 14:3), who has presumably been cleansed. The high priest and the old Jewish temple is powerless to cleanse and even worse it is infected with uncleanness and spreads uncleanness. But Jesus is the true temple and whoever He touches is cleansed. Jesus is the true high priest who offers the healing of God.

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