First Reading:         Deuteronomy 18:15-20

Psalm:                    Psalm 95:1-2, 6-7, 7-9 (8)

Second Reading     1 Corinthians 7:32-35

Alleluia                    Matthew 4:16

Gospel:                   Mark 1:21-28




These readings lend themselves to a consideration of the vocation involved in the states of life in which mature adults find themselves.  Deuteronomy and Mark show how Jesus develops and extends the prophetic state of life of Moses.  Rather than confining himself to Israel, Jesus extends his talents to institutional religion and all humanity, everywhere.  When Paul develops the advantages of the unmarried life for devotion to discipleship, he is far from disparaging the states of life for the rest of the Faithful. 

Note that the Vatican did not take the cover-up scandal with Cardinal Bernard Law in Boston, seriously until the priests objected.  Then the Holy Father recalled Cardinal Law to Rome, where he remained, in charge of the Basilica, Santa Maria Maggiore, until he retired at age eighty, to live in an apartment within the basilica.[1]  The Vatican would have continued not taking the states of life of the Faithful seriously had not the Faithful properly took their own vocations more seriously than the Vatican did.  Without the Faithful, the clergy would have remained relatively uninformed and, therefore, unconcerned.  Psalm 95 is encouragement for the Faithful, If today you hear his voice, harden not your hearts.



Annotated Bibliography

Material above the double line draws from material below the double line.  Those uninterested in scholarly and tangential details should stop reading here.  If they do, however, they may miss some interesting scholarly details. 


Deuteronomy 18:15-20


Deut 16:18—18:22

Richard D.  Nelson, review of Peter T.  Vogt, Deuteronomic Theology and the Significance of Torah: A Reappraisal[2]

Although Nelson finds Vogt inconsistent and self-contradictory, Nelson writes, “Taken as a whole, this is a valuable contribution to our understanding that the purpose and theology of Deuteronomy cannot be fully grasped without taking into account its affirmation of Yhwh’s transcendent and universal sovereignty embodied in the gift of law.”


Deut 18:15

Kenton L.  Sparks, "Gospel as Conquest: Mosaic Typology in Matthew 28:16-20"[3]

Sparks relates Deut 18:15, a prophet like me will the LORD, your God, raise up for you in Matthew, rather than in Mark.  Sparks notes some interesting parallels. 


Just as Pharaoh killed the Israelite children, so Herod killed the Jewish children.  Just as Moses was saved from Pharaoh by placing him in the Nile, so was Jesus saved from Herod by taking him to Egypt.  Just as Moses departed from Egypt as the savior of Israel, so Jesus departed from Egypt as the savior of the world.  Just as Moses fasted for forty days in the wilderness, so Jesus fasted for forty days. 


Matthew sees to it that Jesus improved on the parallel.


Psalm 95:1-2, 6-7, 7-9 (8)

Psalm 95 (94)

The Codex Sinaiticus Manuscript[4]

This is Psalm 94 in the Codex Sinaiticus.  I was able to find words for let us sing joyfully; for he is our God and we are the people, that you would hear his voice, and your hearts.  I was not, however, able to find words for Meribah and Massah.  I do not know what to make of this, but I am learning about the Codex Sinaiticus, whose sign in the apparatus is like a fancy letter “N”.



Psalm 95:1-4, 6

United States Conference of Catholic Bishops, United States Catholic Catechism for Adults[5]

The conflict between the Lectionary and Catechism is at Reading 141C, the Twenty-Seventh Sunday in Ordinary Time, October 10, 2007.  My comment then was, “The Bishops exhibit inadvertent scholarship between the ways they translate Psalm 95:1-2 and 6 in their Catechism[6] and in their Lectionary.  The common verses, displayed below, are 1-2 and 6.  Not every verse is different; but the three verses will be heard at Mass. I go on at Reading 141C to offer a detailed interlinear exhibit of the differences.


Psalm 95:7-11

Todd D.  Still, "Christos as Pistos: The Faith(fulness) of Jesus in the Epistle to the Hebrews"[7]

Still argues that Matthew contrasts the infidelity of the wilderness generation’s infidelity to God, with the Fidelity of Jesus.


1 Corinthians 7:32-35

1 Corinthians 7:32-35

Kurt Aland and Barbara Aland, The Text of the New Testament: An Introduction to the Critical Editions and to the Theory and Practice of Modern Textual Criticism, 2nd ed., Erroll F.  Rhodes, tr.[8]

A Third Century papyrus manuscript was found in 1910 and is in the Egyptian Museum in Cairo.



1 Cor 7:32, 34

Patricia A.  Sullivan, "The Nonvowed Form of the Lay State in the Life of the Church"[9]

Sullivan uses an unmarried man and an unmarried woman into a segue for the nonvowed form of the lay state.  Sullivan begins with a demographic description of population in the year 2000.  She notes that approximately twelve percent of Catholics forty years of age and older never married.  She goes on to argue for developing a theology of a “vocation” to the single state, including homosexual.


Matthew 4:16


Mark 1:21-28

Mark 1:25

United States Conference of Catholic Bishops, United States Catholic Catechism for Adults[10]

The Bishops use the phrase, Quiet! Come out of him in their Chapter 22, “Sacramentals and Popular Devotions,” in a section called “Exorcisms.”  The Catechism treats holy water under Blessings and How Do We Celebrate, but not here, under Exorcisms.  As Father Richard A.  McCormick, S.J., words it in his stuffy, academic prose, “To judge the moral character of many human actions [such as sprinkling with holy water], experience of its impact on persons is essential.”[11]



Mark 1:27

Codex Sinaiticus Manuscript[12]

There is a difficult text at Mark 1:27.


Lectionary (1998)                         one another


The Vulgate (circa 410)                inter se


Douay-Rheims (1582-1610)          among themselves


King James (1611)                       among themselves


Catholic RSV (1969)                    among themselves


New American (NAB) (1970)         one another


New Jerusalem (1985)                 one another


I am able to see that the Codex Sinaiticus differs from the eclectic Greek; at least I have gotten that far.


Mark 1:21-28

Alicia Batten, review of Jean Delorme, Parole et récit évangéliques: Études sur l’évangile de Marc[13]

Batten writes, “The title of the [Delorme] collection, Parole et récit évangéliques, points to the notion that the Gospel of Mark presents itself from the very beginning as speech (parole) structured as story (récit).”  Mark 1:21-28, used here, is one of a variety of pericope [sic] Delorme identifies.  Batten concludes that this work serves as a useful introduction to semiotics.  Semiotics is a general philosophy of signs and symbols that deals especially with their function in both artificially constructed and natural languages and comprises three branches of syntactics, semantics, and pragmatics.[14]


Mark 1:21-27

Paul Lawrence, The IVP Atlas of Bible History[15]

Lawrence observes that the expulsion of the unclean spirit took place in Capernaum, on the northern shore of the Sea of Galilee, just north of the latitude of Cana.


Mark 1:24

John Paul Heil, "Jesus with the Wild Animals in Mark 1:13"[16]

After citing two other references to unclean spirits, Heil writes, “These unclean spirits know the more profound identity of Jesus as God’s beloved and favored Son empowered with the Spirit (1:10-11) to expel them from Israel, God’s Son, because Jesus overcame his testing by Satan, leader of the unclean spirits.”


Mark 1:23

Clint Tibbs, "The Spirit (World) and the (Holy) Spirits among the Earliest Christians: 1 Corinthians 12 and 14 as a Test Case."[17]

Tibbs argues that the unclean spirit here is in grammatical parallel with the Holy Spirit elsewhere.  Tibbs argues that theology and grammar are not synchronized; grammatically, Holy Spirit should not be capitalized


[1] “Bernard Francis Law”,, accessed December 7, 2014.


[2] the Catholic Biblical Quarterly, Vol. 69, No. 3 (July 2007) 565.


[3] the Catholic Biblical Quarterly, Vol. 68, No. 4 (July 2006) 658-659.



[5] Washington, D.C.: United States Conference of Catholic Bishops, 2006, 371.


[6] United States Conference of Catholic Bishops, United States Catholic Catechism for Adults (Washington, D.C.: United States Conference of Catholic Bishops, 2006) 371.


[7] the Catholic Biblical Quarterly, Vol. 69, No. 4 (July 2007) 753.


[8] Grand Rapids, Michigan, William B. Eerdmans Publishing Company, 1989, 97.


[9] Theological Studies, Vol. 68, No. 2 (June 2007) 336.


[10] Washington, D.C.: United States Conference of Catholic Bishops, 2006, 296.


[11] Richard A. McCormick, S.J., The Critical Calling: Reflections on Moral Dilemmas Since Vatican II (Washington, D.C.: Georgetown University Press, 1989, 2006) 267.



[13] the Catholic Biblical Quarterly, Vol. 69, No. 4 (July 2007) 820.


[15] Downers Grove, Illinois, InterVarsity Press, 2006, 138.


[16] the Catholic Biblical Quarterly, Vol. 68, No. 1 (July 2006) 77.


[17] the Catholic Biblical Quarterly, Vol. 70, No. 2 (July 2008) 322.