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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 1 & 2

KJV    NAS  /  Parallel Gospel

1-5 The beginning of the gospel of Jesus Christ, the Son of God. 2 As it is written in Isaiah the prophet: "BEHOLD, I SEND MY MESSENGER AHEAD OF YOU, WHO WILL PREPARE YOUR WAY; 3 THE VOICE OF ONE CRYING IN THE WILDERNESS, 'MAKE READY THE WAY OF THE LORD, MAKE HIS PATHS STRAIGHT.' " 4 John the Baptist appeared in the wilderness preaching a baptism of repentance for the forgiveness of sins. 5 And all the country of Judea was going out to him, and all the people of Jerusalem; and they were being baptized by him in the Jordan River, confessing their sins.

 

Mk 1-1

(253e) Trinity >> Relationship between Father and Son >> Jesus is equal with the Father >> Jesus has all the internal qualities of the Father >> Jesus is the Son of God >> Declared the Son of God by angels and believers

Mk 1,2-4

(8h) Responsibility >> Preparing to interact with God >> Preparing for revival – The things we do to prepare for revival will prepare our minds to receive the truth when it comes. It is questionable how many of us have actually experienced true spiritual revival, but there is a revival that will occur prior to Christ’s return and there are some things we can do to get ready for it. They are quickly outlined in these verses. It says, "Make His paths straight." Although this passage is about the first coming of Christ, there are many similarities between it and His soon-to-be second coming. One thing we can do to prepare for revival is to repent of our crookedness. John The Baptist went about preaching a baptism of repentance for the forgiveness of sins, so when Christ came, He could build on John's foundation of repentance with a baptism of the Holy Spirit and fire. That is, John The Baptist broke the ice for Him. Jesus broke the ice for the apostles in His preaching, and the apostles broke the ice for the church who would take the gospel for the next 2,000 years.

Mk 1-2,3

(7i) Preparing Process (Key verse) – No matter what God does, He always gives us a time period prior to an event to prepare for what He is about to do. There are no surprise visits, except for the wicked. In addition to this verse, consider also the parable of the ten virgins in Matthew. See the pattern and recognize that there is always an interval of time that He gives to prepare. This is Jesus meant when He repeatedly reminded us to stay on the alert: we must listen for His signal.

(142c) Witness >> Validity of Jesus Christ >> Old Testament bears witness to the new >> Prophesy about evangelism

Mk 1-4,5

(149b) Witness >> Validity of Jesus Christ >> Works of the Church bear witness to Jesus >> Evangelism >> Three key messages in evangelism >> Repentance -- These verses go with verses 14&15

Mk 1-4

(90k) Thy kingdom come >> Unless you keep the law you will not see heaven -- The Bible teaches that the one who lives in sin cannot be born-again. Sin is not proof that a person does not know God (because everyone sins), but it stands as evidence against him that the person is alienated from God. How can God forgive what we continue to practice? One difference between a non-Christian and a Christian is this: one feels free to sin while the other feels in bondage to it. Jesus freed us from the bondage of the law by furnishing us with the Holy Spirit as a means of obtaining  victory over sin. He didn't deliver us from the requirements of the law or the consequences of breaking it, but provided us with a better way of meeting its objectives. It is good to feel sorry for our sin, and it is good to ask God to forgive our sin, but if it never translates into true repentance (termination of sin), our victory is incomplete.

(193b) Die to self (Process of substitution) >> Repent >> Turn from your evil ways >> Turn from sin

Mk 1-5

(144a) Witness >> Validity of Jesus Christ >> Witnesses of Jesus >> Popularity >> Men who follow God are popular -- People who have a tight relationship with God are usually well known. They are the ones people consult when they need spiritual guidance. They usually practice the most empathy and seem to have the most insight. They often know best what to say and feel comfortable talking about personal issues in confidence.

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6-11 John was clothed with camel's hair and wore a leather belt around his waist, and his diet was locusts and wild honey. 7 And he was preaching, and saying, "After me One is coming who is mightier than I, and I am not fit to stoop down and untie the thong of His sandals. 8 "I baptized you with water; but He will baptize you with the Holy Spirit." 9 In those days Jesus came from Nazareth in Galilee and was baptized by John in the Jordan. 10 Immediately coming up out of the water, He saw the heavens opening, and the Spirit like a dove descending upon Him; 11 and a voice came out of the heavens: "You are My beloved Son, in You I am well-pleased." 

 

Mk 1-6

(105lc) Thy kingdom come >> Faith >> Led by the Spirit into the fire >> Into the wilderness >> Jesus suffered the wilderness of nature -- This verse goes with verses 12,13. Look at the way John the Baptist lived as a means of preparing for his ministry, which paved the way for Jesus as He stepped into His ministry. The Church in the last days will have to live like John the Baptist as a means of preparing the way for Christ's return. John was led by the Spirit into the wilderness to get away from the distractions of city life, human interactions and relationships with other people that demanded his attention, so he could concentrate fully on the Spirit who was speaking with him.

Mk 1-7

(252a) Trinity >> You shall put no other gods before Me >> Worship Jesus (Because He is equal with God) >> Jesus is worthy of our worship >> Worship Jesus for His inherent worthiness – For John the Baptist to say that He was not worthy to untie the thong of His sandal was to say that Jesus was more than a man; He was God in human flesh, though John was given authority to baptize Him. Jesus answered John is in Mat 3-15, “Permit it at this time; for in this way it is fitting for us to fulfill all righteousness.” Jesus experienced everything baptism represents, even as we die to self to allow God to live in our flesh. Jesus went through this too, the Son of God, who was born with a sinful nature from His mother had to put down His sinful passions and evil desires in order to allow His Father to accomplish His works through Him. Being without sin, He let the Spirit live and reign in His place. Jesus was an ideal example of a Christian, so everything He experienced, we experience, and everything He did we can do through Him. When John baptized Him in water, the Father simultaneously baptized Him in the Holy Spirit, and the sign of the dove rested on His shoulder, the dove being picturesque of the anointing. It is easily startled by sin, so if we intend to maintain the anointing, we must stop sinning, and if we repent, the anointing will return, but if we continue in sin, the anointing may fly away and never come back.

Mk 1-8

(190k) Die to self (Process of substitution) >> Separation from the old man >> Baptism of the Holy Spirit – For the Father to baptize His Son in the Holy Spirit at the same time that John baptized Him in water indicates that there is a connection between the two. The one being baptized is submerged underwater and held there for a couple seconds; this represents dying to self. The person is lifted from the water with the assumption that repentance will follow, being that dead people do not sin. Abstaining from sin gives the message to the world, to the Church and to God that we would be happier if we didn’t have a sinful nature, which is a great evangelism tool; it helps unify the Church and is pleasing to God. The water washes away our past sins and we emerge from the pool with a new purpose in life to please the Lord, who bestows an anointing on us that complements the Spirit that already dwells in us. We willingly accept the yoke of self-sacrifice and service to others in order that the Spirit whom God has hidden in us might live in our place.

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Mk 1,9-11 

(113a) Thy kingdom come >> Faith >> The anointing >> Heaven’s clothes >> Protection >> Covering – The Holy Spirit anointing is like the dove that landed on Jesus at His baptism; one impulsive move will provoke the bird to fly away. The anointing is different from the indwelling Holy Spirit in that the indwelling Holy Spirit is the result of our beliefs in trusting God for our salvation, who will never leave us by His own volition, while the anointing is the result of our obedience in the works that God has prepared for us that we should walk in them. The anointing is like the dove in that if we scare it away it will return if our faith is genuine, but the indwelling Holy Spirit does not come and go based on our performance, but remains with us even when we sin. We don’t easily scare Him away, unless we demand that He leaves, and when He does leave, He will never return. We cannot be born-again-again. Even if we ask Him to leave He won’t go, unless we are sincere about wanting Him to leave. Asking the indwelling Holy Spirit to leave is the ultimate blasphemy against the Holy Spirit, which sets the conditions for the reprobate mind. It is a rare occurrence for someone to ostracize the Holy Spirit from his heart, though it is becoming more common as the day draws nearer to Christ’s return. Most Christians have no fear of this. 

 

12-16 Immediately the Spirit impelled Him to go out into the wilderness. 13 And He was in the wilderness forty days being tempted by Satan; and He was with the wild beasts, and the angels were ministering to Him. 14 Now after John had been taken into custody, Jesus came into Galilee, preaching the gospel of God, 15 and saying, "The time is fulfilled, and the kingdom of God is at hand; repent and believe in the gospel." 16 As He was going along by the Sea of Galilee, He saw Simon and Andrew, the brother of Simon, casting a net in the sea; for they were fishermen.

 

Mk 1-12,13

(105lc) Thy kingdom come >> Faith >> Led by the Spirit into the fire >> Into the wilderness >> Jesus suffered the wilderness of nature -- These verses go with verse 6. The Spirit of God drove Jesus into the wilderness to be tempted by the devil. This is a rare occurrence, for normally the Spirit leads us with a soft voice. He wants us to hear Him whispering in our ear; He doesn’t want to shout to get our attention. Psalm 32-9 says, “Do not be as the horse or as the mule which have no understanding, whose trappings include bit and bridle to hold them in check, otherwise they [He] will not come near to you.” Jesus was already in tune with the Holy Spirit, but He still needed this wilderness experience for His Father to test Him as the Second Adam and for an experience that would be worse than anything He would suffer during His ministry, except the cross itself. The rest of His ministry was easy by comparison. God will never call us to suffer more than our wilderness experience, for the suffering itself becomes our wilderness by which we measure all other difficulties. If we say that our current circumstances are the worst that have happened to us, then we are going through the wilderness.

(106m) Thy kingdom come >> Faith >> Hearing from God >> Purpose of hearing from God >> God gives us direction (Attitude) – Jesus was in sync with the Holy Spirit. Maybe we can hear the Spirit of God too after He has been shouting at us for a while, yet what it means to develop the hearing ear is to listen carefully so He doesn’t have to shout. When God whispers to us and we don’t hear it, we miss God’s blessing. Many say they have never heard the voice of God though they listen for Him. They think they have prepared their hearts to hear Him when in fact they haven’t. They think the only thing necessary is to quiet their hearts, as it says in Psalm 46-10, “Be still, and know that I am God,” but there is more to it. The prerequisite to being still is to stop sinning and set it in our heart that whatever He says, we will do, like Mary said to the waiters at the wedding in Cana, “Whatever He says to you, do it” (Jn 2-5). Many people have not prepared their hearts and have not stopped sinning and are not willing to do whatever He says, and for this reason they cannot hear His voice, for we can only hear what we are willing to do.

Mk 1-12

(216f) Sovereignty >> God overrides the will of man >> God’s will over man >> Compelled by the Spirit >> God forces His bond-servants to do His will

Mk 1-13

(15c) Servant >> Ministering spirits >> Angels give help in time of need

(46f) Judgment >> Spiritual warfare >> Fall of Satan >> Resisting Satan’s deception

(160h) Works of the devil >> Satan’s attitude determines our direction >> Overcoming temptation >> Jesus was tempted

Mk 1-14,15

(149b) Witness >> Validity of Jesus Christ >> Works of the Church bear witness to Jesus >> Three key messages in evangelism >> Repentance -- These verses go with verses 4&5

Mk 1-15

(193c) Die to self (Process of substitution) >> Turn from sin to God >> Repent >> Turn to God

(214j) Sovereignty >> God controls time >> God’s time is soon >> God’s time is always now – Jesus said, “The time is fulfilled.” He made a comment about time; this is the only measurement tool God uses to determine His work schedule. He doesn’t go by the circumstances; he goes by His clock. This was a statement of predestination, the exclusive manner in which the Father thinks. The Father’s foreknowledge was telling Jesus that it was time for His ministry to begin and for the Kingdom of God to be revealed, though some say that the Kingdom of God has not been revealed. God is revealing His kingdom in stages; He is currently revealing His kingdom spiritually, and the next stage will be a physical revelation in the thousand-year reign of Christ.

Mk 1,16-20

(215l) Sovereignty >> God controls time >> Suddenly >> The disciples immediately followed Jesus – Jesus chose these particular people because they chose to immediately drop everything and follow Him; that is, He chose them as they chose themselves. This is the way it works with the will of God: our will is always involved. He doesn’t have an interest in canceling our will; He has an interest in our obedience, and that obedience gives us freedom to exercise our will for His purpose and glory. Had His disciples hesitated and approached Him the next day with their decision, He would have changed His mind about them. He wanted only those who would immediately drop everything and follow Him, because this is what they would be expected to do as His disciples. In other words, they passed the first test in their discipleship. Had they not dropped everything and followed Him, He still would have accepted them in terms of salvation, but they would not have been His closest twelve. There are varying degrees of faithfulness and thus varying degrees of discipleship that He requires from each of us, and those who are closest to Him He expects the most. So if we want to be close to Jesus we must drop whatever we are doing and follow Him.

KJV    NAS  /  Parallel Gospel  /  Navigation Bar

17-23 And Jesus said to them, "Follow Me, and I will make you become fishers of men." 18 Immediately they left their nets and followed Him. 19 Going on a little farther, He saw James the son of Zebedee, and John his brother, who were also in the boat mending the nets. 20 Immediately He called them; and they left their father Zebedee in the boat with the hired servants, and went away to follow Him. 21 They went into Capernaum; and immediately on the Sabbath He entered the synagogue and began to teach. 22 They were amazed at His teaching; for He was teaching them as one having authority, and not as the scribes. 23 Just then there was a man in their synagogue with an unclean spirit; and he cried out, 

 

Mk 1-17

(93f) Thy kingdom come >> Following Jesus >> Leaving everything behind to follow Him -- This verse goes with verse 20. The vast majority of Christians who merely believe in Jesus don’t believe they need to be disciples. They think they can just believe a set of doctrines, and when God calls them into service, they can reject His call, and it won’t affect their status as heaven-bound children of God. However, every time we disobey God our hearing ear takes a hit, and eventually we grow numb to the Holy Spirit. Disobedience does that; the opposite is also true, the more faithful, the more in tune we become to the Spirit and the better we understand our place in His family. There are many people who claim to be His children, who have not heard the voice of the Holy Spirit in years, because of their unfaithfulness.

(216e) Sovereignty >> God overrides the will of man >> God’s will over man >> Compelled by the Spirit >> God takes advantage of your love for Him >> God’s spirit is irresistible -- What was it that made every disciple follow Jesus whom He chose? Had someone else approached them, they would not have had the same response, but Jesus came along and said a few words and off they went, no questions asked, sacrificing their current way of life to be with Him. If we have ever felt compelled by the Holy Spirit, we would begin to understand the experience the disciples had the day they met Jesus. God made man for Himself, so when He calls us, it feels right.

(238e) Kingdom of God >> Pursuing the kingdom >> The kingdom is transferred to the Church >> The new creation is our spiritual identity

Mk 1-20

(93f) Thy kingdom come >> Leaving everything behind to follow Jesus -- This verse goes with verse 17

Mk 1-21,22 

(66j) Authority >> Jesus’ authority >> His words are the authority of God – Jesus taught the people as the One who gave them their laws, who sat on God’s throne at the right-hand of His power from eternity past and now stood before all Israel in the flesh as the embodiment of God's word. Jesus didn’t speak in terms of His opinion but as the word made flesh, the incarnation of their law fulfilled. He used the Scriptures to explain what God was doing and opened the book of Isaiah and read by the tutelage of the Holy Spirit, showing through the Scriptures His exact will and purpose from the very beginning of time. He showed where the Old Testament prophesied about the coming of Christ, who would bring His kingdom from heaven and establish it on the earth, but Jesus did not advise them that the purpose of God at that time was to give His life for the sins of the world. Instead, He spoke about a kingdom that was coming and would slowly manifest over the ages, even as God began by revealing Himself to Abraham so many centuries earlier, then to Moses and slowly built over a course of centuries the knowledge of God in the mind of Israel, so they would come to an understanding of Him and integrate into His plan. His purpose was to manifested in His Son, who would create a divine channel to infuse the Holy Spirit into man through His own blood and  manifest His kingdom in the hearts of His believers with the hope that it will one day manifest in the glory of His second coming, when He institutes a thousand-year reign and demonstrates how to live in peace with one another.

Mk 1,23-26

(146b) Witness >> Validity of Jesus Christ >> Jesus’ works bear witness of Himself >> Demon possession >> Human state >> Their behavior >> Epilepsy

(182j) Works of the devil >> The origin of lawlessness >> Deception >> Being deceptive with people >> Telling the truth with an evil motive --  These verses go with verse 34. According to this verse, some of the first miracles of healing were casting out demons. Note that Jesus did not pursue the demon, but the demon pursued Jesus and initiated His ministry of healing, being an example of Satan and the demons undoing themselves. Had the demon remained quiet, Jesus may had passed without incident. Jesus didn't let the demon speak as if to give glory to God, because He didn't want His identity as the Son of God divulged by demons. He didn't want demons preaching the gospel because they are incapable of telling the truth. If Satan were to speak the truth it would still be a lie, because he is the opposite of Christ who is the truth, and he has motives of destruction in everything he says and does. Simply put, his identity as the "liar and the father of lies" will not allow him to speak the truth. The only way this demon can give glory to God is to come out of the man he possessed at Jesus' word. 

Mk 1-23

(145g) Witness >> Validity of Jesus Christ >> Jesus’ works bear witness of Himself >> Demon possession >> Human state >> Filthiness >> That which Is unclean – The Bible describes demons as unclean. We could say that this particular demon is categorized as an unclean spirit, while there are other demons that are categorized in other ways, but it is more likely that all demons are unclean, meaning that any person who harbors them is unclean. What does it mean by “unclean”? Maybe it means that demons lead people into sexual perversions, though it is more likely these demons are spiritually unclean. Paul makes a comment in 2Cor 7-1, “Therefore, having these promises, beloved, let us cleanse ourselves from all defilement of flesh and spirit, perfecting holiness in the fear of God.” We know all about fleshly sins, but there are also spiritual sins, and these pertain to blasphemy against the Holy Spirit, denying Christ and developing a reprobate mind; these are all examples of spiritual sins, and it is the aim of every demon to lead mankind into sins of this kind. Sometimes demons find inroads into people’s lives to the point of literally possessing them. It is highly unlikely that a saved person can be possessed by demons. If the Holy Spirit dwells in someone, how can a demon dwell in the same person? That is good logic, but we are talking about spiritual matters, which are not cut-n-dried as we would like to suppose.

KJV    NAS  /  Parallel Gospel  /  Navigation Bar

24-29 saying, "What business do we have with each other, Jesus of Nazareth? Have You come to destroy us? I know who You are-the Holy One of God!" 25 And Jesus rebuked him, saying, "Be quiet, and come out of him!" 26 Throwing him into convulsions, the unclean spirit cried out with a loud voice and came out of him. 27 They were all amazed, so that they debated among themselves, saying, "What is this? A new teaching with authority! He commands even the unclean spirits, and they obey Him." 28 Immediately the news about Him spread everywhere into all the surrounding district of Galilee. 29 And immediately after they came out of the synagogue, they came into the house of Simon and Andrew, with James and John.

 

Mk 1-24,25

(146d) Witness >> Validity of Jesus Christ >> Jesus’ works bear witness of Himself >> Demon possession >> Human state >> They know the Holy Spirit – Jesus told the demon to be quiet before He exorcized it; He didn’t want the demons to reveal His identity, because they have a hidden agenda for everything they say. It is a spiritual principle that demons cannot speak the truth. The demon spoke the truth when it named Jesus as the Holy One of God, but its evil motive turned it into a lie. Satan worked with Adam and Eve in the same way; what he said to them was technically true, but because of his motive it was a lie. Truth the devil speaks is a lie, because it is coming from his mouth, and in his heart there is only deception. During Jesus’ temptation in the wilderness, He never argued with the devil, but answered him with Scripture, “It is written….” Jesus probably would not have won any argument with the devil; besides, it was not necessary to argue with him; it is just plain dangerous. He is so wily that he can turn our thoughts inside-out, and before we know it we are thinking backwards and we don’t even know it. We must not argue even with his servants (unbelievers), in that arguing with some people is just like arguing with the devil. If the devil wants to argue with the written word of God, he will accomplish nothing, because the Bible is an inanimate object, whereas the devil’s objective is to interact with mankind to twist his mind around his little finger. His objective is to change our minds, but Scripture consists of paper and ink and the words on the page cannot change no matter how much the devil argues with it.

Mk 1-24

(47d) Judgment >> God Judges the world >> Hell is a place of destruction

(49g) Judgment >> God judges the world >> Enemies of God’s will are destroyed – The demons said, “Have You come to destroy us?” This question sounds like Jesus' primary purpose of ransoming mankind with His own blood never entered the devil's mind, because the idea of God humbling himself was incomprehensible to him. A few chapters later the demoniac confronted Jesus in the Gerasenes, and after Jesus asked his name, it said “My name is legion; for we are many” (Mk 5-9). He exorcised the demons, and they entreated the Lord if they could enter the herd of swine that were in the area, and He allowed them, so the demons entered the pigs, and they all rushed into the sea and were drowned. So Jesus did not destroy them. Once the pigs had died, they demons became disembodied spirits again and roamed the earth, seeking someone to inhabit. So it appears that Jesus did not come to destroy them, but in fact He did! Paul commented in Col 2-15, after disarming the rulers and authorities “He made a public display of them, having triumphed over them through Him.” The death of Christ and subsequent resurrection put the demon world on notice that their judgment was coming; Jesus sent the Holy Spirit in His place and created the Church, and now God is completing the next phase of Satan's demise by destroying the works of the devil. The next phase of Satan’s destruction will come when Jesus returns to the earth during the Millennium. It says that Christ will command His angels to grab the antichrist and false prophet and throw them alive into the lake of fire and bind Satan for a thousand years, wrapping him in chains to keep him from tempting the nations (Rev 19-20,21 through Rev 20-1,2). We can assume the demons were bound with him, and so the world will be demon-free during the Millennium. Then it says that Satan will be released after the thousand years are completed, and he will tempt the nations once more, organizing an attack on Jesus' throne at the end of the Millennium. A human army will come like a cloud against the throne of Christ, and it says that fire will descend from heaven and consume them, and then Satan and his demons will finally be thrown into the lake of fire (Mat 25-41). This is to prove that man’s sinfulness was partly Satan’s doing throughout his six thousand-year reign on earth. Man did a lot of evil, but the devil was there spurring him into sin the whole way. So when the demons asked Jesus, “Have You come to destroy us?” the answer was both Yes and No, no not immediately but yes eventually.

Mk 1-27

(71c) Authority >> Believer’s authority >> We have authority over demons

(165c) Works of the devil >> Manifestations of the devil >> The world is at enmity with God >> The world is wicked -- Jesus was born in a generation that was familiar with demon possession. Rampant demon possession is the last stage of any society just prior to its collapse (from all the wickedness they did to invite the demons to live in them). Since demon possession is the trademark of a wicked generation, it indicates that the last days will also encounter the problem of demons wanting to crawl inside people and take up residence there, described as a more perverse generation than all subsequent generations. In many respects Jesus' second coming is the mirror image of His first visit. Demon possession was so common in Jesus' day that the people even gave it a name, calling them unclean spirits. At least people back then knew they were living in a spiritual world. Our society does not accept the notion of spirits because of its scientific slant, so that if demon possession became common again, we would probably explain it as a medical aberration. 

Mk 1,28-45

(143g) Witness >> Validity of Jesus Christ >> Witnesses of Jesus >> Popularity >> Sought commendably >> seeking Jesus to be healed – It was a great blessing to heal Simon Peter's mother, and it no doubt helped her and the family to realize what Simon was doing. Like so many of us who find Jesus, when we tell our family members that we have changed course, we are now Christians, they start accusing us of joining a cult. It is possible that this happened to Simon and some of the other disciples. Jesus went to other towns and preached the gospel there and healed many who were sick and cast out demons, thus fulfilling prophecy about the Messiah. He performed other signs and wonders among them, so what kept the people from believing in Him as their Messiah? He spoke strange things that almost no one understood, yet He performed amazing signs and wonders. Had He come as one who was haughty and willing to take on governments and politicians and be interested in Israel’s autonomy from Rome, they would have gladly accepted Him. Had He just delivered them from the Romans, they would have accepted Him without question, but because He concerned Himself only with delivering Israel from spiritual bondage, they weren't interested, so they rejected Him.

 

30-39 Now Simon's mother-in-law was lying sick with a fever; and immediately they spoke to Jesus about her. 31 And He came to her and raised her up, taking her by the hand, and the fever left her, and she waited on them. 32 When evening came, after the sun had set, they began bringing to Him all who were ill and those who were demon-possessed. 33 And the whole city had gathered at the door. 34 And He healed many who were ill with various diseases, and cast out many demons; and He was not permitting the demons to speak, because they knew who He was. 35 In the early morning, while it was still dark, Jesus got up, left the house, and went away to a secluded place, and was praying there. 36 Simon and his companions searched for Him; 37 they found Him, and said to Him, "Everyone is looking for You." 38 He said to them, "Let us go somewhere else to the towns nearby, so that I may preach there also; for that is what I came for." 39 And He went into their synagogues throughout all Galilee, preaching and casting out the demons.

 

Mk 1-30,31

(144j) Witness >> Validity of Jesus Christ >> Jesus’ works bear witness of Himself >> Methods of healing >> Healed by Jesus’ touch -- These verses go with verses 40-42

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Mk 1,32-38

(100i) Devotion (Key verse)

Mk 1,32-34

(101a) Thy kingdom come >> Devotion in your ministry to people >> Devoted to ministering to their spiritual needs

(145c) Witness >> Validity of Jesus Christ >> Jesus’ works bear witness of Himself >> Jesus healed them all

Mk 1-34

(182j) Works of the devil >> The origin of lawlessness >> Deception >> Being deceptive with people >> Telling the truth with an evil motive -- This verse goes with verses 23-26

Mk 1,35-38

(51h) Judgment >> Judging the Church with the world >> No partiality among us with God -- Everyone was looking for Jesus and His response was to leave them and go elsewhere. If they want to seek Him, they can find Him ministering to other people who needed Him just as much. 

(100m) Thy kingdom come >> Devotion >> In your ministry to people >> Devoted to ministering to their physical needs

Mk 1-35

(7k) Responsibility >> Use time wisely >> Get ready >> Make time to pray – Jesus maintained a relationship with His Father; it was very important to Him. The last thing He wanted and the last thing He could afford was to get so absorbed in human relationships that He lost touch with His Father, and so He always found time to pray, even if it meant sacrificing sleep to remind Himself of heaven and of all the riches and glory He left behind to serve mankind, and to remind Himself why He was there and what He was doing. We too pray to remind ourselves of our identity as the children of God and to be reminded of what we are doing. It is easy to get absorbed in human affairs and revert to an old way of thinking, to a secular worldview and take on its priorities, interests and values, and forget God. Prayer is how we understand God’s plan for our lives. Prayer is how we right our ship and get it pointed north again, and it is how we remember what He has previously revealed to us. Jesus had a landmass to cover; He wanted other people to know about God’s plan and purpose for mankind. He traveled to other places because the gospel belonged to them too.

(82g) Thy kingdom come >> Three elements of prayer >> Where to pray -- Where we pray is important; we go to the place that makes us feel most comfortable. Has God spoken to us somewhere? We should go back there and make it our personal prayer closet. If we think it is spooky-spiritual to adopt a place of prayer, as though we should be able to go anyplace and pray, don't knock results; if we can break through better one place than another, so be it. If we think we will hear from the wrong spirits, test them against the word of God; if what we are hearing stands the test of Scripture, what demon would teach us about God's truth? We should judge everything we hear from God, and let others judge it too. 

Mk 1-39

(146e) Witness >> Validity of Jesus Christ >> Jesus’ works bear witness of Himself >> Deliverance from demon possession >> Casting out spirits with a word – Demon possession was rampant in the people who rejected their own Messiah. Any nation that has received the knowledge of God and rejected it is ripe for demon possession. There are certainly many crazy people in the world today, shooters who are mentally ill, whom the Bible would say are demon possessed. To the degree that a nation rejects the knowledge of God is the degree that the people open themselves to demon possession. Israel was taken in chains to Babylon and seventy years later were allowed to return to their homeland, and Herod was gracious to rebuild their temple. They were the people whom God wanted to use to accomplish His will, and for that reason Satan worked on them harder than any other people, turning their minds into slush and a quagmire until they didn’t know if they were coming or going. They had become disobedient and rebellious and became susceptible to demon possession more than other ethnic groups or neighboring countries. They had disobeyed the Lord and spurned His reproof and rejected His call to such a degree that demons were able to infiltrate. This is what happens when people and nations reject God. It has to do with conscience. They so defiled their conscience, considering it a mere figment of the imagination, and the devil agrees with them. Since man determined there are no absolutes, the devil absolutely possessed him. Whole societies and nations have come to know the Lord and have turned away from Him and become most susceptible to demon possession.

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40-42 And a leper came to Jesus, beseeching Him and falling on his knees before Him, and saying, "If You are willing, You can make me clean." 41 Moved with compassion, Jesus stretched out His hand and touched him, and said to him, "I am willing; be cleansed." 42 Immediately the leprosy left him and he was cleansed. 

 

Mk 1,40-45

(150g) Witness >> Validity of Jesus Christ >> Works of the Church bear witness of Jesus >> Confessing what Jesus has done

(181b) Works of the devil >> Practicing witchcraft >> Rebelling against the witness of God

(185l) Works of the devil >> The result of lawlessness >> Blasphemy >> Unwilling to obey the revelation from heaven >> Unwilling to walk in God’s freedom

(196e) Denying Christ >> Man exercises his will against God >> Not mature enough to die to self >> Unable to obey God If anyone would challenge the idea that the leprous man whom Jesus healed and then spread the word about Him to such an extent that He could no longer publicly minister without being mauled by the crowds did not hinder Jesus’ preferred method of taking the gospel to the people instead of the people coming to Him, Lk 4,42-44 gives a convincing answer, "When day came, Jesus left and went to a secluded place; and the crowds were searching for Him, and came to Him and tried to keep Him from going away from them. But He said to them, 'I must preach the kingdom of God to the other cities also, for I was sent for this purpose.' So He kept on preaching in the synagogues of Judea." Jesus' handiwork of healing the leper brought attention to the Pharisees, making them all the more aware of what He was doing. There were a couple reasons for Jesus wanting to go to the people. First, He wanted to minister to them where they lived in their homes and where they worked in their neighborhoods, and second, He was very particular about fulfilling Old Testament prophecy about Himself (Isaiah 52-7). 

(199a) Denying Christ >> Man exercises his will against God >> Frustrating the grace of God >> Frustrating Jesus’ ministry – Jesus said, “I am willing,” but the leper was unwilling to follow Jesus’ simple instructions to keep his healing a secret. He was supposed to show himself to the priest and receive an official validation of his cleansing, but it doesn't say that he even did that. Lepers generally lived in quarantine camps, so what was he doing on the streets? Note that Jesus probably knew all these things but healed him anyway. Perhaps he was infecting society with his leprosy from a heart of bitterness and rebellion, so when is says that Jesus acted in compassion, maybe His compassion was more aimed at society. The man continued cohabiting with people, only with a new purpose to subvert Jesus' ministry.  Perhaps this man was so excited to have been cleansed of his leprosy that he had to tell somebody, but he wasn’t doing what he was told. Had he loved the Lord, he would have obeyed Him; instead, he blabbed to everybody about his healing so profusely that Jesus could no longer show himself in public. It seems that he did it to spite the Lord.

(217a) Sovereignty >> God overrides the will of man >> God’s will over man >> God Is Independent Of His Creation >> No one can make God do anything – This did not stop the Lord; nothing can stop the work of God. If someone puts a roadblock in front of God's purpose, it is like building a dam in front of a river, or even a little stream; the water builds up until it finds a way around the obstacle. There are hydrologists who study the movement of water, and the one thing that hydrologists know is that no one can stop water, nor can anyone stop the work of God.

Mk 1,40-42

(114h) Thy kingdom come >> Faith >> Working the grace of God >> Jesus does God’s work >> All his works are done through the father >> Jesus exercises His will through the will of His Father – Jesus spoke in Jn 14-10 regarding the word of God and the miracles He performed, “The words that I say to you I do not speak on My own initiative, but the Father abiding in Me does His works,” and Peter said in Act 3-12,16, “Why do you gaze at us, as if by our own power or piety we had made him walk?... It is the name of Jesus which has strengthened this man.” Jesus performed His miracles through His Father, and once He returned to heaven, His disciples performed miracles through Christ. We like to attribute power and authority directly to Jesus, but His only power was from the Father, as our only power is through Christ. He had a relationship with the Father unlike anybody else, in that the Father and Son have known each other throughout eternity past.

(144j) Witness >> Validity of Jesus Christ >> Jesus’ works bear witness of Himself >> Healing >> Methods of healing >> Healed by Jesus’ touch -- These verses go with verses 30&31

Mk 1-41

(123e) Thy kingdom come >> Manifestations of faith >> Love >> Spiritual affection >> Compassion >> Being willing because you are able -- It is one thing to be able to bless someone, but it is another thing to be willing. There are many capable people who are not willing to use there gifts to bless other people in need. The question is not whether God is able to help us, but whether He is willing. Those three words that Jesus spoke, "I am willing," speaks volumes about the character of God and points directly at God's motive for sending His Son to save us from our sin. The man who was healed demonstrated faith and insight by his words in the power of Christ, implying that the only limiting factor was Jesus' willingness to heal him.  

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43-45 And He sternly warned him and immediately sent him away, 44 and He said to him, "See that you say nothing to anyone; but go, show yourself to the priest and offer for your cleansing what Moses commanded, as a testimony to them." 45 But he went out and began to proclaim it freely and to spread the news around, to such an extent that Jesus could no longer publicly enter a city, but stayed out in unpopulated areas; and they were coming to Him from everywhere.

 

Mk 1,43-45

(20l) Sin >> Disobedience >> Paying no attention to the word – This guy who wrecked Jesus’ ministry, maybe he wasn’t a very good listener. Jesus probably spoke loud enough and fluent enough, and the man’s hearing was probably acute enough to hear what He said, but maybe he just got excited and had to tell somebody, or was it that he told everybody out-of rebellion? Either way this former leper was being disrespectful of the Lord’s command after He graciously healed him. He no doubt was excited that Jesus healed him, but if he were truly grateful, he would have done what He said. If we want to show the Lord gratitude, we will do what He says. We can’t just go and do whatever we want and think it’s the right thing, especially when it diametrically opposes His will. The former leper might say, ‘Yeah, but this was a good thing I did, giving the Lord free publicity,’ but not when He expressly said He didn’t want it.

(94l) Thy kingdom come >> God’s perspective >> God reflects on His plan – When the original plan failed, going from city to city spreading the gospel, another plan took its place; the people came to Him. This was the occasion for the feeding of the five thousand. People came from all around the surrounding area while He resided in a place somewhere outside the city limits far enough to make it inconvenient for His enemies to come after Him. The common person had greater physical and spiritual needs for Jesus than the Pharisees had interest in capturing Him.

(119h) Thy kingdom come >> Manifestations of faith >> Freedom >> Having freedom to minister – There were a number of reasons Jesus wanted to avoid popularity, for it speeded up the clock to His demise. The more people learned about Him, the quicker it would come to the attention of the chief priests, scribes and Pharisees, who would invariably turn the wheels of prophecy in motion regarding His death. He only needed to wait for people to come to Him, but that is not what He wanted. He wanted to go to the people and choose for Himself those who would hear His word and feel His healing touch. Instead, He got a lot of yahoos who came for a free dinner and theater.

(176d) Works of the devil >> The religion of witchcraft >> Zeal without knowledge (Spirit w/o the word) >> Conviction without commandment -- This man was excited enough about what Jesus did for Him, but it was as though he never heard what Jesus commanded him to do. First, Jesus told him not to blab it all over town, and then it never says whether he showed himself to the priest to get an authoritative ruling of his cleansing. This guy had a listening problem. People who are not good listeners are generally loud speakers. This guy fit the mold.

(179d) Works of the devil >> Practicing witchcraft >> Wolves stir up the crowd through jealousy

(184d) Works of the devil >> The origin of lawlessness >> Darkness >> God controls darkness >> God hides unbelief in darkness – Jesus didn’t allow the demons to speak (Mk 1-34), because they knew Him and He wanted to protect His identity. He didn’t want people knowing He was the Son of God; had He allowed His identity to be publicly known, His ministry would have been cut short; the Pharisees would have all the sooner called for His crucifixion. For 3½ years he kept His identity a secret, letting people come to their own conclusions about His identity, many who determined He was the Son of God, for who else could perform the signs that He did, but others doubted. For this reason from ignorance His ministry could continue; He used man’s ignorance to prolong His ministry before the Pharisees demanded His death, who could no longer tolerate His presence in their world. The Pharisees actually knew He was the Son of God better even than His own disciples, indicating that Jesus prefers faithfulness over education and intelligence. It was all there in the Old Testament Scriptures and the Pharisees knew them backward and foreword, dozens of prophecies foretelling the first coming of Christ, who would perform signs and wonders and preach the gospel to the poor. They knew what Scripture said, but they closed a blind eye to it, until He began to interfere with their business of religion; then something had to be done about Him.

(202i) Denying Christ >> Man chooses his own destiny apart from God >> Running from God >> Running from walking in faith >> Running from God through disobedience

 

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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 2

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1&2 When He had come back to Capernaum several days afterward, it was heard that He was at home. 2 And many were gathered together, so that there was no longer room, not even near the door; and He was speaking the word to them.

 

Mk 2,1-12

(46d) Judgment >> Spiritual warfare >> Subjecting your flesh >> Hindrances to the kingdom

(123e) Thy kingdom come >> Manifestations of faith >> Love >> Spiritual affection >> Compassion >> Being willing because you are able

(241f) Kingdom of God >> Opposition toward the Kingdom of God >> Hindering the kingdom >> Obstacles in the way of the kingdom >> Obstacles that keep you from Jesus

Mk 2,1-5

(68b) Authority >> Doing God’s work under His authority >> Natural Ministry of helps

Mk 2,1-4

(136j) Temple >> Your spirit is the temple of God >> Body of Christ is the temple of God -- Consider this analogy: The house where Jesus was staying represents the Church, and the people that Jesus was teaching in the house represents the individual members.

(143g) Witness >> Validity of Jesus Christ >> Witnesses of Jesus >> Popularity >> Sought commendably >> Seeking Jesus to be healed

Mk 2,2-12

(145e) Witness >> Validity of Jesus Christ >> Jesus’ works bear witness of Himself >> Healing >> Pursuing the healing power of God

Mk 2-2

(79j) Thy kingdom come >> Know the word >> Listen to the word >> Listen to Jesus – Jesus drew quite a crowd. People came to see His miracles, which proved His identity and and gave them a reason to listen to Him. After Pentecost when the disciples began preaching Jesus, they met those who had seen the Lord and saw His miracles and heard His words, and they came into the Church by the thousands. Throughout His 3½-year ministry Jesus had prepared Israel to receive their Messiah after He ascended to heaven. Things went well for a while, but then Israel's religious leaders turned the people against the gospel, and the Jews rejected the word of God. In the beginning, though, there was a great influx of believing Jews into the Church; in fact, Jewish people were the first to believe in Jesus.

(255d) Trinity >> Holy Spirit’s relationship between Father and Son >> God’s word is Spirit >> Jesus is the word of the Spirit >> Jesus is the authority of God’s word -- This verse goes with verses 8-12

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3&4 And they came, bringing to Him a paralytic, carried by four men. 4 Being unable to get to Him because of the crowd, they removed the roof above Him; and when they had dug an opening, they let down the pallet on which the paralytic was lying.

 

Mk 2,3-12

(28a) Gift of God >> God is our advocate >> God protects the faith of His people -- It was a very radical decision to tear that roof apart to get to Jesus. Had someone else been in charge they would have stopped those guys immediately, but they damaged the roof in faith. Jesus has a better set of priorities than ours, knowing that the roof can be fixed after considering that faith is far more rare and valuable than the labor and materials of repairing the roof.

(32l) Gift of God >> Father will honor your devotion to Him >> He will honor your faith

(98j) Thy kingdom come >> Endurance (Thorn in the flesh) >> (Faith à Suffering [Circumstances] à Glory [Victory])

(99n) Thy kingdom come >> Perseverance (Working to keep in motion) >> Persevere in faith

(101e) Thy kingdom come >> Zeal does not count the cost >> Zeal goes to extremes

(193l) Die to self (Process of substitution) >> Turn from sin to God >> Run to God in your freedom to choose righteousness -- Those guys demonstrated tremendous faith; they could not have called on God this bravely without Jesus being present. If the Holy Spirit visits us, we are to take full advantage of it and be bold enough to ask Him for the things we need that only He can give. Once He leaves, we don't know when we will have another opportunity to believe in Him this fearlessly to see the power of God demonstrated in our lives. 

(226k) Kingdom of God >> Illustrating the kingdom >> Rewards of heaven >> God rewards us for obeying Him >> Rewarded for believing in God

(236j) Kingdom of God >> Pursuing the kingdom >> Invest in the treasures of the kingdom >> Invest your life in God’s faith

Mk 2,3-5

(115k) Thy kingdom come >> Faith >> Working the grace of God through obedience of faith >> Through diligence -- These verses go with verses 9-12. The grace of God had come to town and these guys were not going to let anyone get in their way. We usually don't receive God's grace sitting in our easy chair, but God usually has something for us to do as a means of overcoming obstacles that naturally occur. As in this example, these guys went through the roof to negotiate an appointment with Jesus. Maybe God has something for us to do in order to receive or understand His grace a little better, such as becoming a student of His word. Whatever His calling, if it sounds a little radical, we should not let that detour us from pursuing it, because by this example, He could just lead us that way.

(129l) Thy kingdom come >> Manifestations of faith >> Unity >> Being in one accord >> Single minded >> Going to any limit to fulfill God’s will – The paralytic concurred with everything his friends were doing; he was just along for the ride, meaning that whatever Jesus said to him He meant also for the guys who were helping him, “Son, your sins are forgiven” (Mk 2-5). This story is a great illustration of unity, being that they were all working together for a common cause, and the cause was to get their friend in the presence of Jesus. The other men needed no healing, just like there are many in the Church who are spiritually mature and some who are not. The men were striving to bring this one into the presence of Jesus that he too may become strong in the faith and enter into unity with the body of Christ that He also may share in the work of bringing others to Jesus. If we want unity to grow in our church, we must make sure that everyone's faith is rewarded and not to stifle the work of God.

Mk 2-4,5

(176l) Works of the devil >> The religion of witchcraft >> False doctrine >> Extremes >> Exception to the rule; going to extremes to love God – They tore up the house trying to get their friend next to the Jesus, and not a single person complained about the damage they were doing, because there was so much grace, mercy, love and vision that overruled the circumstances. The fact that Jesus did not complain was the queue to everyone else not to complain about it either. That is, while Jesus was teaching the people, He was leading them into the proper value system and perspective regarding the situation unfolding there. Damage was done to the house, but these men were seeking something from God, and Jesus wouldn’t discourage them. They wanted their friend healed, and this took precedence over the damage they did to the house. Everyone there must have been thinking that after these guys destroy the roof, they better make sure the owner of the house (Jesus) is compensated with a brand new roof. These are the ways of God: everyone God uses benefits. If this were not the case, no one would let Jesus in their house for fear that He would draw a crowd and everyone would destroy the house and leave it a leaking mess, but as it was, people regularly invited Him to their homes. If the people forgot themselves, Jesus would remind them what is right, so their pursuance of God does not result in someone’s despair.

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5-8 And Jesus seeing their faith said to the paralytic, "Son, your sins are forgiven." 6 But some of the scribes were sitting there and reasoning in their hearts, 7 "Why does this man speak that way? He is blaspheming; who can forgive sins but God alone?" 8 Immediately Jesus, aware in His spirit that they were reasoning that way within themselves, said to them, "Why are you reasoning about these things in your hearts?

 

Mk 2,5-13

(62j) Paradox >> Anomalies >> Being clever >> Let the Holy Spirit vindicate you -- If God has called us to do something, do it. If someone tries to stop us, we are to continue until we reach our goal, and let God answer the one who gets in our way. Once we achieve your objective, what we were doing will make more sense to people, but until then, most won't understand. 

Mk 2,5-12

(120h) Thy kingdom come >> Manifestations of faith >> Forgiveness is an act of mercy >> God forgives us through His power

(178l) Works of the devil >> The religion of witchcraft >> Hypocrisy >> Jesus rebukes the Pharisees >> Rebuked for having no love for God

Mk 2-5

(32d) Gift of God >> God is our Father >> Grace >> The grace of God’s healing power

(59b) Paradox >> Two implied meanings >> Your sins are forgiven / You are healed -- What can we conclude when Jesus said "You are forgiven" and "You are healed"? Do they mean the same? For one thing, we can conclude that it is no harder for Him to heal a person than to forgive him, suggesting that the showing of one is a sign of receiving the other. The Pharisees rightly said that only God can forgive sin, but what is the sign that Jesus can forgive sin? Who else can heal a person's body through His touch? Jesus proved His deity and thus His authority to forgive sins by healing the paralytic. Jesus paid for both our forgiveness and our healing on the cross (Isaiah 53-5,6). If we are open God's forgiveness, then we should also be open to His healing, though bitterness can resist both.

(88f) Thy kingdom come >> Faith produces works >> The purpose of our works done in faith

Mk 2,6-12

(68l) Authority >> Discernment >> Judging between truth and error >> Perceiving false reasoning

(158g) Works of the devil >> Essential characteristics >> Divide and conquer >> Division (Cliques) >> Special interest groups

Mk 2,7-12

(253a) Trinity >> Relationship between Father and Son >> Jesus is equal with the Father >> Jesus has all the external qualities of the Father >> Son has equal authority with the Father -- This passage references the great truth that Jesus is equal with God. To get the full impact of these verses we must first realize that the Pharisees were absolutely correct in their assessment, that no one can forgive sins but God alone. (The Pharisees were no doubt evil, but they were also highly educated in the Old Testament Scriptures.) From there Jesus proved His authority from God by healing the paralytic. The question is: if Jesus were bearing false witness about His authority to forgive sin, (breaking one of God's commandments, "you shall not bear false witness") then why would God give Him the power to heal the paralytic? Again, If this miracle proves that Jesus has authority to forgive sin and consequently proves that He is equal with God, then not just this miracle but every miracle recorded in Scripture proves His deity. This indicates that the Bible is packed with references delineating the trinity.

Mk 2,8-12

(255d) Trinity >> Holy Spirit’s relationship between Father and Son >> God’s word is Spirit >> Jesus is the word of the Spirit >> Jesus is the authority of God’s word -- These verses go with verse 2. In Mat 9,4-7 Jesus said to the Pharisees, who grumbled at Him for claiming to have authority to forgive sins, “Which is easier, to say to the paralytic, 'Your sins are forgiven'; or to say, 'Get up, and pick up your pallet and walk?’ But so that you may know that the Son of Man has authority on earth to forgive sins’ -He said to the paralytic, ‘I say to you, get up, pick up your pallet and go home.’” By this statement He said two things: the son of man has authority to forgive sin and He also has the power to heal, and they are one and the same. That is, if a man has faith to be healed, then he also has faith to be saved; and if a man has faith to be saved, then he also has faith to be healed. There isn’t a faith for healing and a faith for salvation; there is just faith. So anybody who gets healed by the Spirit of God is also a candidate for salvation.

Mk 2-8

(18f) Sin >> False Judgment lacks evidence >> Accusing God

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9-20 "Which is easier, to say to the paralytic, 'Your sins are forgiven '; or to say, 'Get up, and pick up your pallet and walk '? 10 "But so that you may know that the Son of Man has authority on earth to forgive sins "-He said to the paralytic, 11 "I say to you, get up, pick up your pallet and go home." 12 And he got up and immediately picked up the pallet and went out in the sight of everyone, so that they were all amazed and were glorifying God, saying, "We have never seen anything like this." 13 And He went out again by the seashore; and all the people were coming to Him, and He was teaching them. 14 As He passed by, He saw Levi the son of Alphaeus sitting in the tax booth, and He said to him, "Follow Me!" And he got up and followed Him. 15 And it happened that He was reclining at the table in his house, and many tax collectors and sinners were dining with Jesus and His disciples; for there were many of them, and they were following Him. 16 When the scribes of the Pharisees saw that He was eating with the sinners and tax collectors, they said to His disciples, "Why is He eating and drinking with tax collectors and sinners?" 17 And hearing this, Jesus said to them, "It is not those who are healthy who need a physician, but those who are sick; I did not come to call the righteous, but sinners." 18 John's disciples and the Pharisees were fasting; and they came and said to Him, "Why do John's disciples and the disciples of the Pharisees fast, but Your disciples do not fast?" 19 And Jesus said to them, "While the bridegroom is with them, the attendants of the bridegroom cannot fast, can they? So long as they have the bridegroom with them, they cannot fast. 20 "But the days will come when the bridegroom is taken away from them, and then they will fast in that day.

 

Mk 2,9-12

(31f) Gift of God >> Grace >> Salvation >> God is willing to respond to man’s need – We need to differentiate between God’s mercy and His grace: undeserved favor and undeserved power. We come into favor with God after He forgives us, and then we experience His power through His grace. This is a case where God’s grace and mercy are working together to accomplish His will.

(115k) Thy kingdom come >> Faith >> Working the grace of God through obedience of faith >> Through diligence -- These verses go with verses 3-5. The paralytic received the green light from Jesus to rise off his pallet and carry it home, but he still had the option to remain a paralytic on the pallet, unhealed. Working the grace of God is a matter of utilizing the gifts that God gives us to the fullest, as opposed to squandering them. A picture of squandering the gifts according to this example would be for the paralytic to remain on the pallet waiting for God to heal him. What would he be expecting God to do for him, physically pull him off the pallet, or take him by the hand? We are not in control of how God meets our needs, but we are in control of what God gives us. He expects us to participate in the healing process. This man was diligent and walked off with his pallet as instructed, standing to his feet totally healed. That took faith, which is the common ingredient that we supply in everything God does.

(146k) Witness >> Validity of Jesus Christ >> Jesus’ works bear witness of Himself >> Purpose of Miracles, Signs and Wonders get peoples’ attention to hear the word

Mk 2-10

(66k) Authority >> Lordship of Christ >> Jesus’ authority >> Jesus has authority over man

Mk 2-14

(215l) Sovereignty >> God controls time >> Suddenly >> The disciples immediately followed Jesus

Mk 2,15-17

(91g) Thy kingdom come >> The called >> Walking along the narrow way >> Responding to the call of God – Jesus spoke to the multitudes in parables because He knew they didn’t believe in Him, though whenever anyone came to him and asked for clarification, He would explain His parables, but the rest were left in the dark. What is the point of telling someone the truth if they will not believe it? The Pharisees considered themselves righteous, but Jesus was not calling them, and the Pharisees took it as not needing a physician, but Jesus didn’t call them because they would not believe in Him. Jesus said in Mat 22-14, “Many are called, but few are chosen.” He calls many but not all, and He chooses even less. There are some who are never called, such as the Scribes and Pharisees; there are others who are called but don’t respond, and the few who respond are thereby chosen. Everybody who is called hears the voice of the Holy Spirit, but not all follow Him, but everyone who is chosen both hears and obeys the voice of God.

(207la) Salvation >> The salvation of God >> Salvation verses >> The kindness of God >> God is kind to sinners >> He calls sinners to repentance – Obviously, the Scribes and Pharisees did not associate with tax collectors and sinners, because they were considered low-class. The Pharisees wanted to associate with the elite and hobnob with dignitaries, that people might equate them with their privileged friends. Who were these sinners that Jesus mentioned? They were not criminals. They were people who did not respect the traditions of the Pharisees and held their religion in contempt. There are a lot of sinners who don’t go to church today for the same reason. It will take some kind of religious reform before our churches will reach modern-day sinners with the gospel, just as Jesus came to revolutionize Israel’s religious establishment. It never once occurred to the Pharisees to make an attempt to reach the tax collectors and sinners with their religious traditions, simply because they had no honor, dignity and respect to offer the Scribes and Pharisees. We shouldn’t think any differently of our dignitaries in office today in government and even some in our churches. It was very well documented in Scripture how Jesus felt about the poor and destitute and those who were estranged from society, that if the Church cannot reach them, then there is something wrong with the Church.

Mk 2,18-20

(189k) Die to self (Process of substitution) >> Separation from the old man >> Masochism (Self-made martyr) >> Fasting is a state of mourning – John’s disciples fasted but Jesus’ disciples did not, and the Lord’s answer was that He was with them, so there was no reason to fast. After His crucifixion, resurrection and ascension to heaven, His disciples would no longer have His physical presence, and so they would fast in those days. This marks the difference between the physical presence of Jesus and the Holy Spirit who has come to take His place. His objective is to manifest Christ in our lives through the fruits of the Spirit. The difference between His physical and spiritual presence is best seen through fasting. Although we may have the Holy Spirit in us, we do not have His physical presence, and for that reason we must fast in order to better get in touch with the Holy Spirit who dwells in us. When the disciples lacked direction and Jesus was physically standing in front of them, all they had to do was ask Him what they should do. They didn’t need to fast in order to get in touch with Jesus when He was physically standing right in front of them. Often we have difficulty understanding our own way and have difficulty finding His spiritual presence through the haze of our flesh. When we quit paying attention to Him, He often gets buried underneath our thoughts and emotions, and His influence is smothered; fasting works to uncover His presence in our hearts.

Mk 2,19-22

(225k) Kingdom of God >> Illustrating the kingdom >> Parables about the wedding feast – Jesus said that while He was with His disciples, they cannot fast. What did He mean by “cannot fast”? First, His disciples were far too active to go without food. They were traveling all the time. Second, for the disciples the days of Jesus’ ministry were in celebration of His presence. Fasting was not on the table or even realistic, and He put it in the context of a wedding. We know that a wedding is a celebration and that there is always a wedding feast. We cannot fast when we go to a wedding because we are expected to eat and celebrate with the new married couple. To refuse to eat at a wedding would be an insult to the host; it would be totally inappropriate, and it would be just as inappropriate for the disciples to fast while they were with their Lord.

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21-28 "No one sews a patch of unshrunk cloth on an old garment; otherwise the patch pulls away from it, the new from the old, and a worse tear results. 22 "No one puts new wine into old wineskins; otherwise the wine will burst the skins, and the wine is lost and the skins as well; but one puts new wine into fresh wineskins." 23 And it happened that He was passing through the grainfields on the Sabbath, and His disciples began to make their way along while picking the heads of grain. 24 The Pharisees were saying to Him, "Look, why are they doing what is not lawful on the Sabbath?" 25 And He said to them, "Have you never read what David did when he was in need and he and his companions became hungry; 26 how he entered the house of God in the time of Abiathar the high priest, and ate the consecrated bread, which is not lawful for anyone to eat except the priests, and he also gave it to those who were with him?" 27 Jesus said to them, "The Sabbath was made for man, and not man for the Sabbath. 28 "So the Son of Man is Lord even of the Sabbath."

 

Mk 2-21,22

(132i) Temple >> Your body is the temple of God >> Holy Spirit is in God’s people >> Filled with the Spirit >> Filled with the blessing of God

(166l) Works of the devil >> Manifestations of the devil >> Carnality/Secularism (Mindset of the world) >> The carnal mind cannot discern between good and evil >> The old mind -- The new patch pulls away from the old cloth, meaning that the Spirit is repulsed by the flesh. Although people who live in the flesh do not understand and despise the things of the Spirit, the Spirit Himself has a bigger problem with the things of the flesh. The Holy Spirit is repulsed by the fleshly behavior of His people, but remains committed, working with them toward becoming more Christ-like. 

(199c) Denying Christ >> Man exercises his will against God >> Frustrating the grace of God >> Frustrating Jesus >> Frustrating the Holy Spirit – Love was not something Jesus’ enemies had in them, according to His parable of the wineskins. New wine continues to ferment and old wineskins are brittle. The wineskins need to be flexible and able to expand to accommodate the building gas, so if we pour new wine into old wineskins, the gas would build in the sealed container and burst the skins and both wine and skins would be ruined. Jesus was saying that His enemies were spiritually old and brittle and could not accommodate the Holy Spirit, who would want to expand their horizons, but they were too stubborn and inflexible, and the Holy Spirit would only break them, and both they and God's efforts would be wasted.

(222e) Kingdom of God >> The elusive Kingdom of Heaven >> Do not give what is holy to dogs >> God does not entrust his treasures to dogs >> If you are unfaithful, God won’t bother with you

Mk 2,23-28

(79l) Thy kingdom come >> Know the word as a sword in spiritual warfare >> To defend yourself from religion -- The Pharisees seized upon certain laws and obeyed them to the hilt, and as we all know ignored other laws like justice and mercy.... They were excessive and obsessive about keeping the Sabbath, defining the slightest movement as work and thus unlawful. They sabotaged the constraints of the Sabbath until fulfilling it was more work than plowing their field. They lost sight of the very purpose of the law, which was meant to guarantee everyone at least one day off work a week to devote to the service of worshipping God. They twisted the law until they made Israel serving the Sabbath instead of the Sabbath serving them.

(118m) Thy kingdom come >> Manifestations of faith >> Freedom >> Law of the spirit >> Newness of the spirit transcends oldness of the letter – When the Law was first given to Moses, the exclamation point of God’s very presence was appended to it, but later the Law stood alone as a set of mandates by which man should govern Himself. When we look to the days of Moses and what he wrote about the Sabbath, it is no wonder the Israelites interpreted it the way they did, because Moses was very severe. For example, Numbers 15,32-36 tells about a man who was stoned to death for picking up sticks on the Sabbath. That is how seriously the Israelites took their law; nevertheless, Moses did not have the man stoned for breaking the Sabbath but for having the audacity to sin in the presence of God, who had been working very closely with the Israelites in those days. Contrasting that against Jesus and His disciples picking heads of grain on the Sabbath, it prompted Him to say, “The Sabbath was made for man, and not man for the Sabbath,” and that was the end of it. Therefore, comparing the time of Moses with the time of Christ is the difference between the Law first given, being a time when God revealed Himself in person to the Israelites and demanded their reverence, and a time centuries later when they walked in abject spiritual darkness. The intricacies of the Law were strictly enforced when they were first given, but as time elapsed these things became far less significant, until the old covenant wore out altogether and God replaced it with a new covenant, as it says in Heb 8-13, “When He said, "A new covenant," He has made the first obsolete. But whatever is becoming obsolete and growing old is ready to disappear.”

(177d) Works of the devil >> The religion of witchcraft >> False doctrine >> Doctrines of the precepts of men – Since God gave the Law to Israel man has never ceased to ascribe meaning to it in their formation of religion. For example, the Catholics changed the Sabbath from Saturday to Sunday, possibly just to exercise their authority. Since the days of Moses the Sabbath was observed on Saturday, the last day of the week, as it is written, “By the seventh day God completed His work which He had done, and He rested on the seventh day from all His work which He had done” (Genesis 2-2). The Seventh Day Adventists rebelled against Catholic authority and refused to acknowledge their edited day of Sabbath, and so they still worship God on Saturday as a doctrine of their religion, which is fine. If someone wants to lay aside Saturday to worship God, that is great, and if someone wants to worship God on Sunday, that is just as great. What matters to God is that man reserve one day a week to focus on Him, but the Seventh Day Adventists have taken it too far and mandated Saturday as the proper day of worship, which is not that much different from what the Catholics did, turning their Saturday Sabbath into a religion. They have copped the attitude that anybody who acknowledges Sunday as the Sabbath worships God in ignorance, but not everybody who worships God on Sunday recognizes Catholic authority. The Seventh Day Adventists should take Jesus’ statement to heart, “The Sabbath was made for man, and not man for the Sabbath” (Mk 2-27). What people should recognize about the Sabbath is that God gave it to man for his own benefit and not for the Law's sake. In other words, the Sabbath is not a law by which God would judge mankind, but a law by which God would bless mankind.

(178k) Works of the devil >> The religion of witchcraft >> Hypocrisy >> Jesus rebukes the Pharisees for accusing Him of Sin

Mk 2-27 

(19g) Sin >> Having the mental disease of the world >> Man’s twisted understanding

(248k) Priorities >> God’ s preeminence >> The Highest Values >> Some things take precedence over others – The Sabbath has remained in effect all these centuries, because God rested on the seventh day of His work, therefore we should too. God has done a lot of things since the creation, but what he created in six days was the basis of all life and existence, and He has done nothing like that since. Therefore we should say that God has been resting ever since. We are still living in God’s Sabbath, and for this reason it speaks in Heb 4-1 about entering His rest. Therefore we are to rest once a week from our labors but to enjoy a perpetual rest in our spirit, resting in our faith in Jesus to save us from our sins, and to realize that there is nothing else we need do to find favor with God or to be accepted into His heaven. Meanwhile, the leaders of Israel stood in the presence of the very same God who gave the Law to Moses. Cloaked in human flesh, He argued with the Pharisees who enforced ridiculous rules and regulations regarding the Sabbath, and they tried to hold Jesus to them, and He ignored their legalism. In fact, Jesus purposely healed people on the Sabbath, which did not violate any Law of Moses. It was a good day to be healed, being the reason God gave man the Sabbath, a time of refreshing in a state of rest. The Pharisees, the Scribes and Sadducees, along with the priests conferred with each other and scribbled out a laundry list of duties for the Sabbath, essentially breaking the Sabbath, and Jesus said about them, “They tie up heavy burdens and lay them on men's shoulders, but they themselves are unwilling to move them with so much as a finger” (Mat 23-4).

Mk 2-28

(66c) Authority >> Lordship of Christ >> Jesus is Lord of His people

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