Our steps are made firm by the Lord
When the priests make an offering in the Tabernacle, the Lord will appear before the people. Commentators call the Tabernacle the new Sinai. Sinai had vertical zones: some are allowed to accompany him part of the way, but only Moses was allowed to go to the summit. The tabernacle has horizontal zones, from the Holy of Holies to inner court to outer court. (Robert Alter in The Five Books of Moses)
His family stays outside with his critics. They remain with the critics. Inside the house with him are his disciples, his new family. Note that within that new family were women.
He again began to teach by the lakeside. The crowd was so large that he got into a boat to speak to the crowd on the shore. He told them the parable of the sower. The opposition to Jesus by the religious authorities and even his family are examples of the effect of the same seed sowed on different soil.
Later, when the twelve are alone with Jesus, they ask him about the parables. He responds by quoting Isaiah 6:9 that some witnesses will not catch on to what they see and hear. If they would understand, they might change their ways and be forgiven. Morna Hooker, in The Gospel according to Saint Mark points out that even the disciples will fail to understand over and over while outsiders will show remarkable faith.
After explaining the parable of the sower, he emphasizes its meaning by giving them another example: if you want light on the subject, don't cover up the lamp. Further, look at what the light is showing you.
Prayer for Today: Lord, you have planted your word in our community. Help us to nourish the seed. Amen.