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Scripture quotations taken from the New American Standard Bible ® (NASB), Copyright © 1960, 1962, 1963, 1968, 1971, 1972, 1973, 1975, 1977, 1995 by The Lockman Foundation Used by permission. www.Lockman.org 

 

Mark Chapters 15 & 16

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1-9 Early in the morning the chief priests with the elders and scribes and the whole Council, immediately held a consultation; and binding Jesus, they led Him away and delivered Him to Pilate. 2 Pilate questioned Him, "Are You the King of the Jews?" And He answered him, "It is as you say." 3 The chief priests began to accuse Him harshly. 4 Then Pilate questioned Him again, saying, "Do You not answer? See how many charges they bring against You!" 5 But Jesus made no further answer; so Pilate was amazed. 6 Now at the feast he used to release for them any one prisoner whom they requested. 7 The man named Barabbas had been imprisoned with the insurrectionists who had committed murder in the insurrection. 8 The crowd went up and began asking him to do as he had been accustomed to do for them. 9 Pilate answered them, saying, "Do you want me to release for you the King of the Jews?"

 

Mk 15,1-32

(18a) Sin >> Unrighteous judgment >> Condemning Jesus – The resurrection of Jesus Christ is a threat to all other beliefs. The Pharisees, Scribes and chief priests believed in their rendition of the Old Testament, and they believed in their position among the people of Israel. They had prestige among the people and they lived sumptuously; their beliefs engendered their lavish lifestyles, but the resurrection of Jesus Christ diametrically opposed this. If they believed in the resurrected Christ, they would have had to give up their business of religion and their prestigious place in society, because Jesus would then be the focus of attention. Instead, they were happy to mock Him on the cross. He conquered death three days later, just as He promised, but for His enemies it was too late; they wanted Him to come off the cross right then while they were watching, but of course they didn’t really want this. Had Jesus done what they asked, they would have nailed Him right back on it again. The reason they were standing there was to make sure He died. They weren’t about to go home before He breathed His last and merely supposed He had died; they wanted to see him dead with their own eyes to confirm everything they had previously believed about Him. In their minds, if He could not stop them from killing Him, then none of His claims were true, but what they failed to recognize was that the cross was God’s preordained plan; they were all acting like puppets on a string; God was using them to crucify His Son. God was saying, ‘I knew you would do this.’ For them to crucify Him based on God’s preordained plan was to inadvertently admit to God that they were hopeless sinners desperately in need of a savior, but salvation would never come to them, because they refused to believe in Him. Essentially, they sacrificed the Lamb of God for the sake of others who would inherit eternal life. It was possibly the only selfless thing they ever did.

Mk 15-2

(17i) Sin >> Unrighteous judgment >> Ignorance >> Speaking truth without knowing it

(58k) Paradox >> Two implied meanings >> Are you the king of the Jews? / You are the king of the Jews! -- Instead of asking Jesus whether He was the king of the Jews, Pilate could have converted his question to a declaration of faith by merely switching two words: "Are you?" to "You are!," and changing his eternal destiny and possibly the course of history. No one knows whether Pilate went to heaven, but if he didn't, it is because of those two words out of order. 

(85a) Thy kingdom come >> Your words can lead to your own demise >> They will keep you out of heaven

Mk 15,3-5

(18f) Sin >> False Judgment lacks evidence >> Accusing God – Pilate wanted Jesus to beg for His life but Jesus wouldn’t do it, because His destiny was in the hand of another, His Father. Jesus was Almighty God dressed in human flesh, and He wasn’t about to beg anybody for anything. Pilate would have less believed Jesus was a king had He begged for his life, but the fact that He didn’t made the stronger case that perhaps He was a king, and this was partly the reason he wrote the plaque above his cross that read, “Jesus the Nazarene, the King of the Jews” (Jn 19-19). The accusations the chief priests brought against Him were matters of their own law, which were irrelevant to Pilate. The religious establishment in Jerusalem was a thorn in his side, not that day only but ever since he took office as the Roman governor of Jerusalem. These same people and others like them were a thorn in Paul’s side too, who followed him wherever he went preaching the gospel. Part of the reason Paul went to the ends of the earth to preach the gospel was to get away from the Jews, and Pilate felt the same way about them. There was very little they actually understood about the Scriptures, though they supposedly devoted their lives to studying them.

(49m) Judgment >> God judges the world >> Condition of the Church in the last days – The fact that the religious establishment was present when Jesus was crucified, suggests that people similar to them will also be present in the last days. Anybody who would disagree with contemporary spiritual authority is automatically dubbed as false, their evidence being that their opponents contradicted them. This was the Pharisees’ acid test to discern truth from error, and they used it on Jesus, and He proved them wrong by their Old Testament Scriptures. After smashing their teachings to pieces their belief system warped back into shape, being unaffected by anything He said to them. The Pharisees were no more seeking truth than the devil himself. The Pharisees were reminiscent of the machines on Arnold Schwarzenegger’s Terminator movies, where after pounding them into the pavement or blowing them to pieces and spattering their parts in every direction, their memory metal would seek itself and recombine and return to its original shape with the net result of its battle scars disappearing. The Pharisees were the same way. Jesus could totally destroy their understanding of the Scriptures, spattering their doctrines over the streets of Jerusalem, and shortly thereafter their skewed doctrines would find their way back to their darkened hearts, and they would be completely unaffected by anything Jesus said to them.

(180c) Works of the devil >> Practicing witchcraft >> Wolves >> Be shrewd as wolves and more innocent than they appear >> Fighting off wolves with a clever innocence >> Being more innocent than their self-righteousness

Mk 15-3

(25g) Sin >> Poverty (Forms of fear) >> Killing Jesus -- This verse goes with verses 10-32

Mk 15-4,5

(62d) Paradox >> Anomalies >> Being clever >> Answer with wisdom 


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10 For he was aware that the chief priests had handed Him over because of envy. 

 

Mk 15,10-32

(25g) Sin >> Poverty (Forms of fear) >> Killing Jesus -- These verses go with verse 3. It says in Jn 3-16 that God so loved the world that He sent His Son, so it was the Father’s plan that Jesus should come to us. Everything that happened to Jesus was the Father’s plan. When we look at Jesus, everything seems fine, but when we look at our own lives, many things seem out of place. This is from retrospect; we have the advantage of viewing Jesus' life from a distance where everything is going according to plan, but we don't see a distinct plan and purpose in our own lives, and it is troubling. What we see is a lot of death and suffering and pain and evil; this is the Father allowing it in order to achieve His objective, which is to create a people for His own good pleasure, who have been tested by the world, the flesh and the devil and found true. We pour contempt on someone like Hitler, who had the attitude that the end justifies the means and then proceeded to murder all the people He didn’t like. God allows suffering in order to refine His people, while, men like Hitler hold the place of evil that God uses to prove His saints. The Father is truly a conundrum to us in many respects. He is so big and powerful that we wonder if He even notices us. When we try to calculate these things, we discover our math is insufficient, and so part of the testing in this life is in trusting God in His absence but in the face of pain and suffering. Should we stop trusting God? Is He so little that His plan would fail? Man thinks pain and suffering is evil, but God says man is evil. Man murdered the Son of God, but pain and suffering never hurt anyone.

Mk 15,10-15

(199i) Denying Christ >> Man chooses his own destiny apart from God >> Rejecting Christ >> The world rejects God >> World rejects God because it does not know Him – Jesus performed thousands of miracles and many who saw the miracles were present in Jerusalem, and some were even healed by the touch of His hand, yet they cried with the rest of them for His blood. This seems impossible but it happened. They should have had the attitude that they didn’t know what this man allegedly did wrong; all they know is that He loved them, and He taught them the word of God and healed their diseases, so whatever they say He did wrong, the people should have trusted Him instead. The way it happened, though, He gave them every reason to trust Him, but they cried for His blood instead. Then again, had they trusted Him, they wouldn’t have crucified Him, and God’s predetermined plan would not have come to fruition. This was predestined to happen. Had they not crucified Him, it would have proved God wrong, because He is under the conviction that the world hates Him and does not know Him.

Mk 15-10

(24f) Envy (Key verse)

(24g) Sin >> Poverty (Forms of fear) >> Envy >> Angry at God because of their poverty -- Man's issues with God are not altogether obvious. Besides being prodded by the devil into sin, Man's greatest enemy is poverty. An easy way to arrive at this conclusion is to determine the common thread between all wars fought throughout man's bloody past. We must conclude that poverty is at the root of our dilemma. If we were not so needy, we would not be so greedy. It is our fear of the future and the stockpiling of supplies that causes us so much anxiety and grief. Once greed enters the world, those who don't have what they think they need become envious of those who have more, and start wars over resources, rather than living one day at a time. 

(170c) Works of the devil >> Manifestations of the devil >> Pursuing the glory of man turns us in the wrong direction >> Fighting God to keep the glory of man

(185b) Works of the devil >> The origin of lawlessness >> Mystery of lawlessness >> Having no grounds for your hate >> Hating Christ without a cause – This is the negative power of envy at work. There is one kind of envy that wishes we were rich and famous like some of our favorite celebrities. We sit at the television set and dream of being like them. We are jealous and wish we had what they had; we’re not angry at them but love them. The envy that the Pharisees had against Jesus was not the same; it was an envy that hated Him. Their envy was competitive. Instead of wanting to be like Him, they wanted to overcome Him. They were like Satan, who is first deceitful, and when that didn’t work, they resorted to murder. They would have done just about anything to have healing power in their fingertips, so they could charge exorbitant prices to touch the bodies of the sick and diseased, and they wished they had His wisdom and could draw a crowd the way Jesus did, so they could charge exorbitant prices for their speeches, and they would amass greater fortunes and prestige than ever. Jesus drove His enemies crazy having the power of God at His disposal and refusing to use it for evil. The religious establishment had the power of Satan at their disposal and used it exclusively for evil.

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11-28 But the chief priests stirred up the crowd to ask him to release Barabbas for them instead. 12 Answering again, Pilate said to them, "Then what shall I do with Him whom you call the King of the Jews?" 13 They shouted back, "Crucify Him!" 14 But Pilate said to them, "Why, what evil has He done?" But they shouted all the more, "Crucify Him!" 15 Wishing to satisfy the crowd, Pilate released Barabbas for them, and after having Jesus scourged, he handed Him over to be crucified. 16 The soldiers took Him away into the palace (that is, the Praetorium ), and they called together the whole Roman cohort. 17 They dressed Him up in purple, and after twisting a crown of thorns, they put it on Him; 18 and they began to acclaim Him, "Hail, King of the Jews!" 19 They kept beating His head with a reed, and spitting on Him, and kneeling and bowing before Him. 20 After they had mocked Him, they took the purple robe off Him and put His own garments on Him. And they led Him out to crucify Him. 21 They pressed into service a passer-by coming from the country, Simon of Cyrene (the father of Alexander and Rufus ), to bear His cross. 22 Then they brought Him to the place Golgotha, which is translated, Place of a Skull. 23 They tried to give Him wine mixed with myrrh; but He did not take it. 24 And they crucified Him, and divided up His garments among themselves, casting lots for them to decide what each man should take. 25 It was the third hour when they crucified Him. 26 The inscription of the charge against Him read, "THE KING OF THE JEWS." 27 They crucified two robbers with Him, one on His right and one on His left. 28 [And the Scripture was fulfilled which says, "And He was numbered with transgressors."]

 

Mk 15,11-16

(186da) Works of the devil >> The result of lawlessness >> Man’s role in becoming a reprobate >> The fool throws Jesus away for something better >> Israel betrayed the Lord

Mk 15,11-15

(179d) Works of the devil >> Practicing witchcraft >> Wolves stir up the crowd through jealousy – Just how close was the crowd to the opinions of the chief priests’ and Pharisees’ before they stirred up the people? How close were they to asking for the blood of Christ on their own? The attitude of the Jews was that if Jesus would not become their king and fight against their enemies the Romans and focus on the problems of this life, instead of incessantly talking about the afterlife, then they didn't want Him. This was already well cemented in their heads, so they had the sentiments of the religious establishment; all they needed was a little prodding. It wasn’t long before this that they gave Jesus a great entrance into the city laying down palm branches and praising God. What happened to make them cry for His blood only days later? Their hope was that Messiah would come and raise them over the nations, but they never stopped to think what expectations their Messiah might have of them. They considered His coming to be stipulation-free, but their past interactions with God never exhibited such a conspicuous absence of conditions. Contradictorily, Moses continually warned them of God’s conditions that He imposed on His people before He would lift a finger to help them. The entire chapter 28 of Deuteronomy is devoted to espousing the terms that God required of Israel before they saw one benefit of being the nation chosen to bear His name.

Mk 15-15

(37a) Judgment >> The cross >> God judged the sin of the world through Christ – Jesus became the blood sacrifice for the forgiveness of sin and took the punishment that belonged to Barabbas, who represents us all. He was the scapegoat that they practiced in the Old Testament prior to making the annual sacrifice of the lamb at Passover. Before killing the lamb, they would take a similar lamb and release it into the wilderness.

Mk 15,16-37

(103i) Thy kingdom come >> Purifying process >> God purifies His church >> Jesus goes through God’s purifying process -- If Jesus is innocent, undefiled, separated from sinners and exalted above the heavens, then why did He need to go through a purifying process? Heb 5-8 says that He learned obedience through the things which He suffered. Although God is totally complete and in need of nothing, He still lacked experience with sin. God found a way to experience sin by experiencing ours on the cross without ever personally sinning. Eph 4-9,10 says, "Now this expression, 'He ascended,' what does it mean except that he also had descended into the lower parts of the earth? He who descended is Himself also He who ascended far above all the heavens, that He might fill all things." Jesus was already Lord of Satan, but He wanted first hand experience with the realm of darkness, so God sent His Son all the way to the bottom of human depravity to experience the full impact of sin on His soul; that is, He descended into hell, in order that He may become Lord even of darkness and evil. If God required His Son to experience the things that He learned, how much more does He require it of us, which requires that we do more than just say we love God. He expects us to prove it. God's purifying process always involves suffering. Our relationship with God grows deeper as we endure His will in our lives. This process is painful because it always involves sacrifice, but our reward is experiencing God through the things we suffer in His name. 

Mk 15-21

(37f) Judgment >> Judgment of God >> Jesus’ humanity >> Jesus had human limitations

(188e) Die to self (Process of substitution) >> Separation from the old man >> Suffering >> Suffering the will of God in your life – They scourged Jesus and then crucified Him. That is a quick few words, but they represent an unimaginable amount of pain and suffering to our Lord. When we think of Satan’s absolute hatred for God’s Son, having tempted Him innumerous times, failing to make Him sin, He tried to disrupt Jesus' relationship with His Father. The only thing Satan knew after deception failed was murder, and he did it with such violence and rage, no doubt possessing the men who wielded the whips, giving them superhuman strength. The cat-o-nine-tails tore the skin off his back until He almost died, and what was left of Him they nailed to a cross until dead, which only took a few hours, because of the horrible beating he received. Each whip had nine leather strands and each strand had glass and bone fragments tied into them, so when they hit the soft flesh, it tore chunks of meat from the body. Each time the whip struck the back it was like whipping Him nine times.

Mk 15-28

(141f) Witness >> Validity of Jesus Christ >> Old Testament bears witness to the new >> It bears witness to Jesus >> Prophesy about Jesus’ death

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29-36 Those passing by were hurling abuse at Him, wagging their heads, and saying, "Ha! You who are going to destroy the temple and rebuild it in three days, 30 save Yourself, and come down from the cross!" 31 In the same way the chief priests also, along with the scribes, were mocking Him among themselves and saying, "He saved others; He cannot save Himself. 32 "Let this Christ, the King of Israel, now come down from the cross, so that we may see and believe!" Those who were crucified with Him were also insulting Him. 33 When the sixth hour came, darkness fell over the whole land until the ninth hour. 34 At the ninth hour Jesus cried out with a loud voice, "ELOI, ELOI, LAMA SABACHTHANI?" which is translated, "MY GOD, MY GOD, WHY HAVE YOU FORSAKEN ME?" 35 When some of the bystanders heard it, they began saying, "Behold, He is calling for Elijah." 36 Someone ran and filled a sponge with sour wine, put it on a reed, and gave Him a drink, saying, "Let us see whether Elijah will come to take Him down." 

 

Mk 15,29-32

(19m) Sin >> Nature of sin >> Unwilling to believe >> Spirit of unbelief

(243b) Kingdom of God >> Opposition toward the Kingdom of God >> Persecuting the kingdom >> Mocking Christ – Jesus’ enemies mocked Him saying, “You who are going to destroy the temple and rebuild it in three days, save Yourself, and come down from the cross!” Later Jesus rose from the dead, but He didn’t appear to everyone. He didn’t show Himself to the high priest; He showed Himself to His disciples and those who believed in Him. His enemies who mocked Him never saw Him alive again, so they continued in their unbelief. This is what God is willing to do for us; if we believe in Him, He will go out of His way to help us believe all the more, but if we refuse to believe in Him, He will give us reason for that too. This is based on the kingdom principle: “For whoever has, to him more shall be given, and he will have an abundance; but whoever does not have, even what he has shall be taken away from him” (Mat 13-12). This principle is threaded throughout Scripture. Had Jesus shown Himself to the high priest, he would have had Him crucified again. We all have an opportunity to believe in God, but if we choose not to believe in Him, He will leave us in our unbelief. God has expectations of us; He wants us to show Him a little faith so He can work with us.

Mk 15-29,30

(58j) Paradox >> Two implied meanings >> The temple building / The temple of His body

(140e) Temple >> Temple made without hands >> Hiding place >> The entrance exam -- Heb 9-24 says that Christ did not enter a holy place made with hands, but into heaven itself to appear in the presence of God for us. The way into the holy place for Jesus was through the cross, then in Mat 26-24 Jesus told us to take up our cross and follow Him. We are all going to die some day; that day will be the point of transition and will be our ticket to the holy of holies in the most literal sense, but until then God has commanded us to deny our petty pleasures that conflict with the life He has prepared for us behind the veil, a spiritual realm where we can go and experience God until we meet Him face to face.

(184k) Works of the devil >> The origin of lawlessness >> Abusing the grace of God >> Dragging God’s Grace Through The Mud >> Dishonoring the grace of God – Those who hurled abuse at Him may have been throwing stones, but another passage says that one who was crucified next to Him also hurled abuse at Him. With his hands nailed to a cross the only thing He could have been hurling was mocking words and spittle (Lk 23-39). It is amazing that God allowed people whom He created to mistreat Him to such an extent, but He did it as a way of proving to mankind that we are all sinners. The problem with many people, they don’t think they’re sinners. If we were willing to hurl abuse of all forms at our maker, then we must be sinners, yet people simply refuse to believe it. Instead of seeking truth, they look for teachings that appeal to their flesh and then throw them in God's face.

Mk 15,33-37

(26b) Sin >> Consequences of sin >> Death is separation >> Death is hell >> Sin has the sentence of hell – That loud cry may have been the sound that everybody makes after they die and goes to hell. The Father forsook Jesus at His death; no one was there to catch Him when He fell, and as His Spirit slipped from His body it fell into the recesses of the pit, and there He spent 3½ days preaching to the people who lived there. He probably informed them of His identity and that He was only there temporarily and that He wasn’t taking anybody with Him when He left. He didn’t go there to rescue anybody; He only went to tell them how big a mistake they made in their former lives by rejecting all that was right and good and living as though there was no God. Three days later He returned to a resurrected body to the light of day, only He was in a tomb, and the angel rolled away the stone, and He walked out alive forevermore. Death will never touch Him again, and He holds out the promise to anybody who would believe in Him for eternal life that they would not have to see that evil place from which He had returned. They will become immune to death, and life will take hold of them and they will live forever with Him in paradise.

(208g) Salvation >> The salvation of God >> Personal relationship >> Being the friend of God >> Father & son relationship – The centurion heard many of the claims about Jesus, but he never considered them to be true, until He died. It was the way He died that convinced Him that He was the Son of God. How did Jesus die to convince a skeptic of His divinity? His cry just before He died revealed His deep and abiding relationship with His Father. Jesus knew God on a personal level, having known and loved His Father from eternity past; nobody but the Son of God could have expressed the feelings He had that welled inside Him that He never expressed throughout His life until His death. This is probably true about all of us. We will probably have feelings at our death that we never felt until then, a summary of our whole lives. Jesus summarized eternity past in a moment’s time, expressing a genuine relationship with God that He had always known.

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37-47 And Jesus uttered a loud cry, and breathed His last. 38 And the veil of the temple was torn in two from top to bottom. 39 When the centurion, who was standing right in front of Him, saw the way He breathed His last, he said, "Truly this man was the Son of God!" 40 There were also some women looking on from a distance, among whom were Mary Magdalene, and Mary the mother of James the Less and Joses, and Salome. 41 When He was in Galilee, they used to follow Him and minister to Him; and there were many other women who came up with Him to Jerusalem. 42 When evening had already come, because it was the preparation day, that is, the day before the Sabbath, 43 Joseph of Arimathea came, a prominent member of the Council, who himself was waiting for the kingdom of God; and he gathered up courage and went in before Pilate, and asked for the body of Jesus. 44 Pilate wondered if He was dead by this time, and summoning the centurion, he questioned him as to whether He was already dead. 45 And ascertaining this from the centurion, he granted the body to Joseph. 46 Joseph bought a linen cloth, took Him down, wrapped Him in the linen cloth and laid Him in a tomb which had been hewn out in the rock; and he rolled a stone against the entrance of the tomb. 47 Mary Magdalene and Mary the mother of Joses were looking on to see where He was laid.

 

Mk 15-37

(192a) Die to self (Process of substitution) >> Result of putting off the old man >> Gain by losing >> Life for life >> Losing your life to gain God’s life

Mk 15-38

(205h) Salvation >> Salvation is based on God’s promises >> New covenant >> The old one is obsolete -- The veil of the temple covering the Holy of Holies was torn from top to bottom, symbolizing that the ministry of the old covenant had reached its end and that a new, better covenant was being inaugurated in its place. An angel grabbed the top of the curtain and ripped it in half from top to bottom. Had it been an earthquake, it would have ripped from bottom to top as the earth split beneath it. The tearing of the veil represents the access God has given us into the Most Holy Place, not only in the life to come, but also in this life.

Mk 15-39

(86e) Thy kingdom come >> Belief >> God’s works act as evidence to support our beliefs

(150f) Witness >> Validity of Jesus Christ >> Works of the Church bear witness of Jesus >> Confessing Jesus as the son of God – For the centurion to make the claim that Jesus was the Son of God and then to thrust a spear in His side must not have been easy, but it was required of Him. Had he not made sure Jesus was dead, he too would have ended up on a cross, and somebody else would be shoving a spear in his side. After the centurion realized this was the Son of God, he had to inflict wound in His body, fatal had He not already been dead. For this man to have confessed Jesus indicates that he got saved. If he didn’t get saved at that moment, he probably got saved later after hearing the gospel message of His resurrection. Many were unwilling to believe in Jesus no matter how much evidence was presented to them. The Pharisees may have known Jesus was the Son of God, but they refused to believe it. Putting it in those terms, it really shows their depravity. His countenance alone was enough for the discerning believer to accept Jesus Christ as the Son of God.

Mk 15,40-47

(14e) Servant >> Ministry of helps >> Being in charge of the details – The disciples came to the women to ascertain where they laid the body of their Lord. Women are servants by nature, and this is the way it has been throughout all time. Women generally have a beautiful spirit, and men have been the breadwinners, and together they have raised families throughout the generations. However, we see that the world today does not fit this nice pattern anymore, indicating that we are reaching the end of the age. We now must deal with cultural change going in directions that no one is controlling so that no one knows her place anymore. For thousands of years, the genders were well defined, but the world has been blurring the distinctions in social order and the result is confusion about our roles in society. When a woman tries to be a servant, she gets mocked and told that it is no longer her job and that a man could just as easily do it. Now a woman doesn’t know if she should obey her culture or her instincts that she received from God. Paul said the woman has received the ministry of angels, for they too are servants (1Cor 11-10).

Mk 15-40

(170e) Works of the devil >> Manifestations of the devil >> Seeking the glory of man >> Greed and lust are the glory of man >> Woman is the glory of man -- This verse goes with verse 47. It is no wonder more women go to church than men; many women followed Jesus in His day. Women understand the gospel seemingly better than men. Jesus was a man devoid of violence, and women gravitate towards gentlemen. He had a very attractive personality and His gospel was attractive to women. His whole teaching and ministry revolved around love, which is very attractive to women. Love integrates into their nesting instincts; this is what women are striving to emulate as mothers. Love is primary to mothers in raising their children. Mothers have kept this world alive all these thousands of years, not just giving birth to the next generation, but also nurturing them, so it shouldn’t be surprising that women are attracted to Jesus, because He has a motherly way about Himself. Jesus said in Jn 14-2,3, “I go to prepare a place for you. If I go and prepare a place for you, I will come again and receive you to Myself, that where I am, there you may be also.” That has a ring of nesting instincts, like a mother bird builds a nest to raise its young. That place, by the way is the New Jerusalem.

Mk 15,43-47

(123d) Thy kingdom come >> Manifestations of faith >> Love >> Spiritual affection >> Compassion >> Reaching out to those in need

Mk 15-43

(84b) Thy kingdom come >> Be on the alert >> Remain on duty >> Keep watch – When an Old Testament believer says he is waiting for the Kingdom of God, it means something different to the New Testament believer who also is waiting for the Kingdom of God. We have far greater knowledge than the Old Testament believer; many of the questions have been answered. Joseph of Arimathea was an Old Testament believer waiting for the Millennium, which is a kingdom that is still to come that we will experience on this planet, whereas the new covenant believer is waiting for the Kingdom of God in eternity. The old covenant believer was waiting for heaven on earth, while the new covenant believer waits for earth in heaven after God makes all things new. The old covenant believer was waiting for a temporal thousand-year prototype of the real heaven in eternity. Just as the old covenant believer passed over the 2000-year age of grace, so the new covenant believer passes over the Millennium. Most Christians don’t talk about the Millennium, except those who study endtime prophecy, and then they just refer to it as a fact and not as something they anticipate. Joseph of Arimathea waited for the Kingdom of God, the Millennium; how much more should we also be waiting for this glorious age when it is just about to be revealed? The Millennium is the last age before eternity resumes, an age when Christ reigns on this planet and sustains peace for a thousand years among sinners, proving that it can be done. The Church will also be present in resurrected bodies, and many of us will have jobs during the Millennium to lead the people in paths of righteousness. Since the Millennium will occur on this planet, we could bury a time capsule in this life and recover it in our resurrected bodies during Christ's reign, and put things in it that we predict would be significant in the age to come, souvenirs such as wedding rings that will remind us of our former lives.

Mk 15-47

(170e) Works of the devil >> Manifestations of the devil >> Seeking the glory of man >> Greed and lust are the glory of man >> Woman is the glory of man

 

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Scripture quotations taken from the New American Standard Bible ® (NASB), Copyright © 1960, 1962, 1963, 1968, 1971, 1972, 1973, 1975, 1977, 1995 by The Lockman Foundation Used by permission. www.Lockman.org 

 

MARK CHAPTER 16

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1-6 When the Sabbath was over, Mary Magdalene, and Mary the mother of James, and Salome, bought spices, so that they might come and anoint Him. 2 Very early on the first day of the week, they came to the tomb when the sun had risen. 3 They were saying to one another, "Who will roll away the stone for us from the entrance of the tomb?" 4 Looking up, they saw that the stone had been rolled away, although it was extremely large. 5 Entering the tomb, they saw a young man sitting at the right, wearing a white robe; and they were amazed. 6 And he said to them, "Do not be amazed; you are looking for Jesus the Nazarene, who has been crucified. He has risen; He is not here; behold, here is the place where they laid Him. 

 

Mk 16,1-10

(3i) Responsibility >> To the Family >> God addresses both genders >> Women leaders – Should we believe the witness of a woman who once hosted seven demons? Jesus taught that when demons are exorcized, the person must dedicate her life to Christ or else those demons would return. Mary Magdalene certainly did that. She was a woman, and so she was not one of the disciples, but she loved the Lord at least as much as the eleven. She was always there, like a groupie, she never left His side. She fell in love with the Lord, not sexually, like some people have claimed, like Dan Brown wrote of her in “The Da Vinci Code.” If her interest in Christ were sexual, the demons would have returned to her, just like those who make these ridiculous claims probably have demons tormenting them in the form of lying spirits. We should believe her testimony and not be like the disciples and doubt her word.

(14i) Servant >> Ministry of helps >> Helpers are Indirectly in charge of the word >> They minister to God's leaders

(228g) Kingdom of God >> God’s kingdom is a living organism >> God is working in you to place you in His will >> To lead you in His purpose -- Jesus may have appeared to Mary Magdalene twice, the first time at the tomb where they saw the stone rolled away. She and her companions fled, telling no one what they had seen because they were afraid. The second time He appeared to her, she reported it to the other disciples, who did not believe her. God gave her a second chance to report to His disciples about His resurrection, just as He gave His disciples a second chance to believe in His resurrection. God has a plan for each of us, who patiently works with us to fulfill His purpose. If we make a mistake, He helps us get back on track, so long as we don't oppose His will. If we resist Him beyond human blundering and demonstrate that we just don't want Him in our lives, He will get the hint and find someone who is interested in doing His will. God knows we love Him; He understands we are but dust, and that we are blundering little children who frequently need help and a second chance.

Mk 16,1-3

(189aa) Die to self (Process of substitution) >> Separation from the old man >> Holy sacrifice >> The smell of death >> Stench of the dead – Pilate spoke to a guard, who assured Pilate that Jesus was dead by the spear that the centurion plunged into his heart, and out came blood and water. He granted the body to Joseph of Arimathea, a lifeless object that once had a name, Jesus, but now was just a thing that if He hadn’t risen from the dead would have begun to stink with the putrefaction of decay, being why we bury corpses. Jesus was dead 3½ days, close to the period of Lazarus (four days). In both cases, Jesus and Lazarus were buried in a tomb hewn from rock, and so the temperature remained a constant and predictable fifty-five to sixty degrees, making the decaying process relatively slow, though Lazarus’ sister was concerned that his body had already begun to stink, suggesting that Jesus’ body had also begun to stink before His Father raised Him from the dead.

Mk 16,5-8

(248f) Priorities >> God’ s preeminence >> Jesus is first >> Jesus is first born of the Father – Some people say Jesus received His body back, while others say God gave Him a new body. Jesus did many miraculous things in His temporal, human flesh before His resurrection: He walked on water and performed thousands of miracles, but He never mutated His body to take on different appearances, and He never walked through walls. We know that as Jesus was raised from the dead, so we will be raised in like manner. Many who have died have nothing left of their bodies depending on how they died and when they died. If they have been dead for thousands of years, their bodies are gone; they no longer physically exist, so God will give them a new body. However, a body that partially remains in the casket God will use to ensure the tomb is empty in case someone checks if the person was included in the First Resurrection. God transformed the atomic structure of Jesus’ resurrected body, and we will follow the same pattern when we receive our resurrected bodies.

Mk 16,5-7

(15e) Servant >> Angels are messengers from God >> They are sent to impart information – Angels are first and foremost servants; in other contexts they are called messengers. They have done many things in the Old Testament. For example, a great angel led Israel into the promise land, and angels were sent against Israel to chastise them when they sinned. People are always fearful when we see them, like seeing a bear. Angels are beings of renown. They are not human, and that is one reason we fear them. Another reason is that we instinctively know God has uses them to execute judgment, and we can see on their faces that they are capable of it, and if they ever raised their hand against us, it would be for righteousness sake and not for evil. The scariest part of angels is that whatever they do, they are totally justified in it, because they take orders from God. Jesus was as much God as He was human, and He was a servant like the angels, and He created them before He created man. In the beginning God said, “Let Us make man in Our image, according to Our likeness” (Genesis 1-26), and He created man to be magistrates, angels as servants, and we both reflect His divine nature. We will have more authority and angels will be greater servants, making us equal in His eyes.

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7-11 "But go, tell His disciples and Peter, 'He is going ahead of you to Galilee; there you will see Him, just as He told you.' " 8 They went out and fled from the tomb, for trembling and astonishment had gripped them; and they said nothing to anyone, for they were afraid. 9 [Now after He had risen early on the first day of the week, He first appeared to Mary Magdalene, from whom He had cast out seven demons. 10 She went and reported to those who had been with Him, while they were mourning and weeping. 11 When they heard that He was alive and had been seen by her, they refused to believe it.

 

Mk 16-7

(126f) Thy kingdom come >> Manifestations of faith >> Terms of peace – The angel specifically mention Peter's name, not because he was leader of the disciples, but because he needed special treatment, suffering terrible internal anguish since he denied the Lord. His conscience bothered him; he questioned his faith; he wondered if he had committed the unpardonable sin; he didn’t even know if God cared about him anymore. Once he learned that Jesus had risen from the dead, he questioned if Jesus would want to see Him again, and so the angel wanted to ease his mind about these concerns. Christ had the angel specifically mention his name to begin the process of healing so he could get passed his guilt and know there are no hard feelings. He blasphemed Jesus’ name and denied that he even knew Him. Jesus said, “Whoever denies Me before men, I will also deny him before My Father who is in heaven” (Mat 10-33), but he repented, and so the subject was closed. This is the power of repentance.

Mk 16-8

(23m) Sin >> Poverty (Oppression) >> Fear of the unknown >> Fear the appearance of angels – The disciples had fear mixed with excitement, joy and many other emotions, fear being the greater emotion, though not terrible or necessarily frightening. The disciples were never in any danger. Should we fear angels? In every case in the Bible it says the people were mortified in their presence, but also every case in the New Testament the angel told them not to be afraid. Since the angel always said this, then we should not fear them. The angel said not to be amazed. They were amazed in the sense that they didn’t know to believe what they were seeing was real. When we watch a magic trick, we are amazed, meaning we question what we saw was real, and the angel said not to be amazed, meaning believe that Jesus has risen from the dead.

(88i) Thy kingdom come >> Fearing the power of God is the beginning of wisdom

Mk 16,10-14

(4m) Responsibility >> Advocate God’s cause >> Disciples are chastened by the Lord – Jesus believed the truth about His Father with a faith that was not of this world. His expectation for us is the same for us; He wants us to believe the truth about God with a divine faith that He will give us. Therefore, the Bible’s definition of a hardened heart is the inability to believe the truth about God. There are many people who believe lots of things about God, and they give themselves credit for their many beliefs, but God doesn’t give credit for a rendition of truth that is diluted by falsities. We could say that the disciples had an excuse for their unbelief, but Jesus didn’t see it that way. They had the Old Testament Scriptures that said He would rise from the dead, though there were mountains of words in the Old Testament that obscured these passages, but once He had risen, it was easier to see the truth written on the page. They thought they had an excuse because they saw His agonizing death on the cross, being violently killed, His body horribly mutilated, seemingly impossible to raise from the dead, but Jesus Himself told them in advance that these things would happened (Mk 8-31). According to the Lord, they had every reason to believe in His resurrection, but at the same time Jesus also knew their actual response would be unbelief and hardness of heart, which is associated with bitterness. It could be that their hearts became bitter and angry with God, because all their hopes had been seemingly dashed. Nevertheless, Jesus reproached them for their unbelief. His attitude was that they should have known. They walked with Him for three years, and they saw one miracle after another. They should have known that God had something up His sleeve.

(18b) Sin >> Unrighteous judgment >> Condemning God’s people

(20i) Sin >> Doubting miracles

(197a) Denying Christ >> Man exercises his will against God >> Spiritual laziness >> Rebelling Against what God wants you to do >> Refusing to renew your mind

Mk 16,11-16

(20e) Sin >> Nature of sin >> Having a hardened heart


 

12-15 After that, He appeared in a different form to two of them while they were walking along on their way to the country. 13 They went away and reported it to the others, but they did not believe them either. 14 Afterward He appeared to the eleven themselves as they were reclining at the table; and He reproached them for their unbelief and hardness of heart, because they had not believed those who had seen Him after He had risen. 15 And He said to them, "Go into all the world and preach the gospel to all creation.

 

Mk 16-12

(224a) Kingdom of God >> Illustrating the kingdom >> Description of heaven >> Describing the kingdom after he makes all things new >> Description of the resurrection -- Prior to the cross, for 33 years Jesus had the same kind of body as ours. In every respect Jesus was a human being of the male gender, but after the resurrection, He was no longer tied to the limitations of human flesh. He appeared in different forms and walked through walls, but are those greater miracles than walking on a storm-tossed sea? Some say that Jesus' resurrected body was no longer human flesh, but He bore the nail marks in His hands and feet, indicating that it was the same body, though now with the ability to die and the frailty of the flesh removed. The only thing that really changed at the resurrection was His ministry. After the resurrection Jesus' ministry would turn spiritual, so His disciples needed to adjust to a new way of relating to Him. 

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Mk 16-13,14

(138b) Temple >> Building the temple (with hands) >> Reproof >> Jesus reproves His disciples for their unbelief

Mk 16-14

(5i) Responsibility >> Discipleship tested >> God tests your loyalty >> God tests your commitment to believe whatever He says – We have a responsibility to the truth. The disciples loved Jesus with all their hearts, yet they were unwilling to listen to everything He said. To believe most of what He said is still not believing in Him, for to believe in Him is to believe everything He says, as His mother, Mary, said to the waiters at the wedding in Cana, “Whatever He says to you, do it” (Jn 2-5). There was an endpoint to the disciple’s willingness to believe in Him, though they fully believed that He was the Son of God. He told them that He was the embodiment of truth and they believed Him, yet when He spoke to them the truth about His suffering, He discovered their limitation to believe in Him, and if they had their limitations, then we have ours. What are we unwilling to believe about God's word? They were more convinced about their own opinions than what Jesus was telling them, and it is inevitable that this is happening to us too; we are all in the dark about some things. None of us have the pure, untainted truth as God would have us believe. We all have a picture in our minds of God, and every person’s picture is invariably skewed to the degree of our lack of willingness to believe the truth. We don’t know where we are wrong; we just know that we can’t be completely right. The worst part about this is most likely the areas where we are wrong are regarding aspects of the truth that are really going to sting when the truth overcomes our self-deceptions. Therefore, there is always room to open our minds and be ready to edit our belief systems and scenarios that we have created about God. There is nothing wrong with creating scenarios in our minds about Him, but we should avoid being dogmatic about them, and be ready to change whenever the persuading power of the Holy Spirit reveals a more accurate version of the truth.

(74l) Thy kingdom come >> Let not your heart be hardened >> Insensitive to the things of God – Jesus told His disciples in advance what would happen to Him when He came to Jerusalem; He would be mistreated by the Jews and given to the Romans to be scourged and crucified, and three days later rise from the dead. However, none of these words made it to their ears. They were all deaf to them, because they didn’t want to believe it. They were in tune to a gospel of their own making, expecting the Kingdom of God to appear immediately (Lk 19-11). It was one thing to not comprehend His words, but to never hear them in the first place when He bluntly spoke to them about His impending future, suggesting there was something else underfoot. This was a spiritual problem when considering that after his crucifixion they were too afraid to believe what He said, and even after others testified that he was alive they still wouldn't believe. Their minds were locked as in a prison. Jesus did what He could to prepare them, saying, “let these words sink into your ears” (Lk 9-44), but it was useless. This is the power of Satan to blind a person’s mind to the truth, as in the parable of the Sower, whom seed fell beside the road and the birds ate them. Whatever we don’t want to believe about God, the power of Satan to blind our mind is there to enforce our resistance. His power is profound and scary. After Jesus was crucified the disciples were then in a position to want to believe the truth of Jesus' resurrection, yet even then they unwilling to believe. Imagine how much easier it would have been for the disciples to accept Jesus’ fate and hope for His resurrection, had they simply believed in Him. After getting through the terrible experience of the cross, they could have had a three-and-a-half-day party waiting for their Lord to rejoin them, instead of lamentation. Once Jesus rose from the dead and He appeared to them all in the flesh, then and only then did Satan’s power lost its effect, but we don’t have the convenience of Jesus literally manifesting Himself every time we falter in our faith. Therefore, we must protect our hearts by maintaining our faith, so Satan has no opportunity to blind our minds to God. If we are not diligently protecting our minds, we are destined to suffer the same fate as the disciples only without Jesus physically coming to save us from our unbelief. If we are not actively protecting our hearts from the power of Satan’s spiritual darkness, we will become blind to whatever truth we choose not to believe.

Mk 16-15

(44k) Judgment >> Transformation process >> Fulfill your ministry in evangelism >> Complete your mission – When Jesus gave his proclamation to preach the gospel to every creature, this was the vision that He delivered to His people as how they should use their lives for God’s service to spiritually establish His kingdom on the earth. It was a spiritual kingdom that God had in mind, and later He would add flesh and bone to it when the time came for His millennial kingdom to manifest. The resurrection showed them that everything was possible. No doubt the very first thought that ran through their minds when they saw their Master standing in front of them again was that God would raise their bodies from the dead too one day, for Jesus taught that whatever He did they would do also, and whatever happened to Him would happen to them. Therefore, when they saw Jesus alive again, they were looking as in a mirror at themselves one day alive from the dead, never to die again, and this was their new great hope, and their plan and purpose in life was to preach this gospel of the resurrection. 


 

16-20 "He who has believed and has been baptized shall be saved; but he who has disbelieved shall be condemned. 17 "These signs will accompany those who have believed: in My name they will cast out demons, they will speak with new tongues; 18 they will pick up serpents, and if they drink any deadly poison, it will not hurt them; they will lay hands on the sick, and they will recover." 19 So then, when the Lord Jesus had spoken to them, He was received up into heaven and sat down at the right hand of God. 20 And they went out and preached everywhere, while the Lord worked with them, and confirmed the word by the signs that followed.] [And they promptly reported all these instructions to Peter and his companions. And after that, Jesus Himself sent out through them from east to west the sacred and imperishable proclamation of eternal salvation. ]

 

Mk 16-16

(47j) Judgment >> God judges the world >> Eternal judgment against unbelief toward Christ

(157f) Witness >> Validity of the believer >> Evidence of being hell-bound >> Being displeasing to God >> Living in unbelief -- The whole world lives in unbelief toward God; only the Church believes in Him. 1Jn 5-19 says, "We know that we are of God, and that whole world lies in the power of the evil one." When those of the world repent of their unbelief and acquire a faith in God, they join ranks with a group who believe in Him called the Church. Whether or not they actually go to a local church does not make them any less a member of the True Church; they are, however, strongly encouraged to seek fellowship with other people of like faith for their own sake and for the welfare of the body. This means that the world remains in total darkness, except for that one special group, whom Jesus called "the light of the world." Unbelief can be defined as a secular world view (devoid of all spiritual and religious input). Upon a premise of systematic rejection of all things pertaining to God, the world's thought processes are built on a foundation of atheism, the religion where matter created itself (which is ridiculous), and uses evolution to explain the origins of life and the universe. The world offers no hope. 

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Mk 16-17,18

(67f) Authority >> Jesus delegates authority >> Name of Jesus >> Performing miracles in Jesus’ name

(146i) Witness >> Validity of Jesus Christ >> Jesus’ works bear witness of Himself >> Purpose of Miracles, Signs And Wonders >> Proof that Jesus is the son of God >> That the world may be saved – This is a fairly well known passage and fairly well distorted, such as by snake charmers picking up snakes while under some kind of trance, both the snake and the charmer, and they think they are doing it by the power of God. What Jesus meant was for cases like Paul, who when gathering sticks had a viper latch onto his hand, but he shook it into the fire without any harm come to his person (Act 28,3-6). God has an interest in protecting His servants, his disciples and missionaries who were carrying His word into the darkness, preaching the gospel of the kingdom and doing His will. Along the way if something happened to them, God would be there to protect them from all harm in order that they may continue their work. While preaching Jesus to the world, we will run across many sick people and demoniacs who need healing. One effective way of spreading the gospel is to heal those with maladies, not to make a show of it, but as the need arises. God promises to heal them in order to authenticate His servants and their message as genuine ministers of the gospel, so people might be more willing to listen and believe.

(156g) Witness >> Validity of the believer >> Evidence of salvation >> Manifesting the Holy Spirit is evidence of salvation

Mk 16-17

(67f) Authority >> Jesus delegates authority >> Name of Jesus >> Performing miracles in Jesus’ name

(95d) Thy kingdom come >> Positive attitude >> Speaking in tongues >> Tongues are a sign of obedience

Mk 16-18

(243h) Kingdom of God >> The eternal kingdom >> The body of Christ is indestructible >> The new man is indestructible

Mk 16-19,20

(67d) Authority >> Jesus delegates authority from the right hand of the father – There are many definitions of God, perhaps the most poignant being that He is the creator of the universe, but He also has other attributes that define Him as God. One of them is to notice who is seated on the throne at the Father's right-hand. Lucifer was defined as the brightest star in the sky, and He was given the universe. The fact that he had possession of the entire universe, suggests that He received the position of Jesus Christ, and he all but sat in His chair. Jesus sits at the right-hand of the Father, and it doesn't say that Lucifer was ever given the authority of God’s throne, so we could say that Lucifer wanted to be like the Son of God when He tried to take His throne by force. To possess God's creation wasn’t good enough for Lucifer; he wanted His authority too, but God never offered it to Him, so he attempted to usurp it. Jesus saw him fall from heaven like lightning. Jesus remained on His Father's throne until He came into the world through the agency of human flesh and revealed to us the character of God, and “He humbled Himself by becoming obedient to the point of death” (Phi 2-8). After this He returned to heaven and to His Father’s throne and sat at His right-hand. Now His throne is glorified all the more and heaven is raised to new heights, and it will continue to rise in power and authority throughout eternity. Christ achieved these things through humility and submission to His Father's authority, not by Lucifer's tactics.

(115d) Thy kingdom come >> Faith >> Working the grace of God >> Through your ministry >> Through your calling >> In preaching the gospel – The gospel has always grown and spread to more people, possessing the earth, taking it from Satan and his minions one soul at a time. This is how the gospel started, but what is the gospel? If it is not advancing into new territories, then it is stagnant and dying through disobedience. Over the centuries Christianity has been reduced to a mere set of doctrines without any net change in the way people live.

(237h) Kingdom of God >> Pursuing the kingdom >> The Church is transferred to the kingdom >> The ascension >> Jesus’ ascension

Mk 16-20

(254k) Trinity >> Holy Spirit’s relationship between Father and Son >> Jesus is equal with the Holy Spirit >> Power of Jesus’ Spirit -- The disciples who personally walked with Jesus for three years, whose hands handled the word of life, did not see a contrast between He and the Holy Spirit. This verse says that Jesus worked with them through various signs to authenticate the gospel. The Holy Spirit is simply Jesus minus His flesh, showing the close ties between the members of the godhead within the trinity.