“The next two miracles [in the Gospel of Mark] also take place on Gentile soil. In the first, Jesus heals a deaf mute who also has a speech impediment. Jesus heals him by putting his fingers into his ears and by spitting and touching his tongue, saying, “Be opened.” What’s unusual here is that Mark includes an Aramaic word—Ephphatha—in his otherwise Greek narrative. It may be a colorful detail, or it may be that Jesus did at times use a “magic” word in his healings.” —Kenneth L Woodward, The Book of Miracles
Then he returned from the region of Tyre, and went by way of Sidon towards the Sea of Galilee, in the region of the Decapolis. 32 They brought to him a deaf man who had an impediment in his speech; and they begged him to lay his hand on him. 33 He took him aside in private, away from the crowd, and put his fingers into his ears, and he spat and touched his tongue. 34 Then looking up to heaven, he sighed and said to him, “Ephphatha,” that is, “Be opened.” 35 And immediately his ears were opened, his tongue was released, and he spoke plainly. 36 Then Jesus[a] ordered them to tell no one; but the more he ordered them, the more zealously they proclaimed it. 37 They were astounded beyond measure, saying, “He has done everything well; he even makes the deaf to hear and the mute to speak.” —Gospel of Mark chapter 7
Gary: Why would the Creator of the universe need to stick his fingers into someone’s ears to heal his deafness, or worse, put some of his spit on the guy’s tongue to allow him to speak?? That just seems really bizarre to me. It doesn’t prove that this story is a literary invention, but…
Come on. Why not just make the conscious decision to heal the guy and…POOF…the guy’s hearing and speech are restored? Why the dog and pony show?