Mark 9:38-40 NRSVue
38John said to him, “Teacher, we saw someone casting out demons in your name, and we tried to stop him because he was not following us.” 39But Jesus said, “Do not stop him, for no one who does a deed of power in my name will be able soon afterward to speak evil of me. 40Whoever is not against us is for us.
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Some thoughts on this scripture
/The one that is not against us is for us/. You told us this, Lord, but we did not learn it. We have looked with suspicion on many who were working for people's good, because they belonged to a party, or a community, or a tribe that is different from ours. I will try to know them by their fruits, not by their labels. I will seek to focus on common ground, not on barriers.
The disciples thought of distinction and difference; Jesus did not tolerate their narrow vision. I pray that I may recognise good in a generous and appreciative way.
Jesus sees all who act in his name as having much in common. I join in prayer with all who invoke Jesus’ name today.
Prayer brings us in touch with all in the human race, a sort of mystical communion with all God's children. Different people follow Christ and relate to God in different ways. The apostles were upset they were not following them. Jesus looks at what a person is committed to, and sees discipleship in many ways. Maybe some of our prayer time might be to pray for all who are committed to goodness, faith and justice in the world, no matter in what way they show this.