February 12th Mark 1 A. The Credentials of the Servant John the Baptist introduces Christ
1: The beginning of the gospel of Jesus Christ, the Son of God; 2: As it is written in the prophets, Behold, I send my messenger before thy face, which shall prepare thy way before thee. 3: The voice of one crying in the wilderness, Prepare ye the way of the Lord, make his paths straight. 4: John did baptize in the wilderness, and preach the baptism of repentance for the remission of sins. 5: And there went out unto him all the land of Judaea, and they of Jerusalem, and were all baptized of him in the river of Jordan, confessing their sins. 6: And John was clothed with camel's hair, and with a girdle of a skin about his loins; and he did eat locusts and wild honey; 7: And preached, saying, There cometh one mightier than I after me, the latchet of whose shoes I am not worthy to stoop down and unloose. 8: I indeed have baptized you with water: but he shall baptize you with the Holy Ghost.
The Father identifies Christ
9: And it came to pass in those days, that Jesus came from Nazareth of Galilee, and was baptized of John in Jordan. 10: And straightway coming up out of the water, he saw the heavens opened, and the Spirit like a dove descending upon him: 11: And there came a voice from heaven, saying, Thou art my beloved Son, in whom I am well pleased.
Satan tests Christ
12: And immediately the Spirit driveth him into the wilderness. 13: And he was there in the wilderness forty days, tempted of Satan; and was with the wild beasts; and the angels ministered unto him.
Lord’s word’s & work’s authenticate Christ
14: Now after that John was put in prison, Jesus came into Galilee, preaching the gospel of the kingdom of God, 15: And saying, The time is fulfilled, and the kingdom of God is at hand: repent ye, and believe the gospel.
B. The Works of the Servant Jesus calls four fishermen
16: Now as he walked by the sea of Galilee, he saw Simon and Andrew his brother casting a net into the sea: for they were fishers. 17: And Jesus said unto them, Come ye after me, and I will make you to become fishers of men. 18: And straightway they forsook their nets, and followed him. 19: And when he had gone a little further thence, he saw James the son of Zebedee, and John his brother, who also were in the ship mending their nets. 20: And straightway he called them: and they left their father Zebedee in the ship with the hired servants, and went after him.
Jesus delivers a man and others
21: And they went into Capernaum; and straightway on the sabbath day he entered into the synagogue, and taught. 22: And they were astonished at his doctrine: for he taught them as one that had authority, and not as the scribes. 23: And there was in their synagogue a man with an unclean spirit; and he cried out, 24: Saying, Let us alone; what have we to do with thee, thou Jesus of Nazareth? art thou come to destroy us? I know thee who thou art, the Holy One of God. 25: And Jesus rebuked him, saying, Hold thy peace, and come out of him. 26: And when the unclean spirit had torn him, and cried with a loud voice, he came out of him. 27: And they were all amazed, insomuch that they questioned among themselves, saying, What thing is this? what new doctrine is this? for with authority commandeth he even the unclean spirits, and they do obey him. 28: And immediately his fame spread abroad throughout all the region round about Galilee. 29: And forthwith, when they were come out of the synagogue, they entered into the house of Simon and Andrew, with James and John. 30: But Simon's wife's mother lay sick of a fever, and anon they tell him of her. 31: And he came and took her by the hand, and lifted her up; and immediately the fever left her, and she ministered unto them. 32: And at even, when the sun did set, they brought unto him all that were diseased, and them that were possessed with devils. 33: And all the city was gathered together at the door. 34: And he healed many that were sick of divers diseases, and cast out many devils; and suffered not the devils to speak, because they knew him.
Jesus heals many - a leper
35: And in the morning, rising up a great while before day, he went out, and departed into a solitary place, and there prayed. 36: And Simon and they that were with him followed after him. 37: And when they had found him, they said unto him, All men seek for thee. 38: And he said unto them, Let us go into the next towns, that I may preach there also: for therefore came I forth. 39: And he preached in their synagogues throughout all Galilee, and cast out devils. 40: And there came a leper to him, beseeching him, and kneeling down to him, and saying unto him, If thou wilt, thou canst make me clean. 41: And Jesus, moved with compassion, put forth his hand, and touched him, and saith unto him, I will; be thou clean. 42: And as soon as he had spoken, immediately the leprosy departed from him, and he was cleansed. 43: And he straitly charged him, and forthwith sent him away; 44: And saith unto him, See thou say nothing to any man: but go thy way, shew thyself to the priest, and offer for thy cleansing those things which Moses commanded, for a testimony unto them. 45: But he went out, and began to publish it much, and to blaze abroad the matter, insomuch that Jesus could no more openly enter into the city, but was without in desert places: and they came to him from every quarter.
Mark presents before us a portrait of Christ as the Servant of the LORD. There is no genealogy given. Servants have no family line. Mark gives the Servants two references and Christ immediately begins work. However before Mark can tell us about Christ he must first introduce John. John comes as an OT prophet calling Israel to return unto the LORD their God. He calls on them to repent because the Kingdom is very near. (Prophetically its only 10 years away.) John also baptises those who wish to return unto the Lord. This baptism is a Jewish custom in which the seeker demonstrates their desire to present themselves before the LORD in a fit state of cleanliness. The effect of John’s ministry was very striking. Huge crowds of People flocked to John. Confessing their sins and being restored unto the LORD. John is clothed in a camel hair coat symbol of broken heartedness and ate locusts and wild honey, symbols of judgment and blessing. John’s ministry was to herald the truth that the Messiah was coming. John says He is greater than l and l am unworthy to be his lowest servant. When John met Christ he recognised his as a more righteous man than himself, probably because when the time for confession came Christ would have been silent. Therefore Christ had to insist that John baptise him. In this way Christ submitted to the ordinances of the Law. At Christ’s baptism the Holy Spirit came upon him. And from now on Christ was empowered to do the work the Father had called him to do. He would not speak from himself, he would only speak the Fathers words and he would not perform miracles in his own power, only in the Power of the Holy Spirit. The Holy Spirit begins immediately to guide Christ and the first thing was to be led into the wilderness for testing. Christ’s holiness was untested so far. Now he will face the full force of testing by the Devil. Christ is tempted to move away from the leading of the Spirit. The lower animals come to him and the higher creatures’ minister to him. After John is executed Christ moves his ministry to Galilee where he calls disciples to follow him. And he begins going from synagogue to synagogue preaching the Gospel. People are astounded by his preaching. And he demonstrates his power in healing the sick and liberating the demoniacs. The fame of Christ is overwhelming so that Christ rises early for prayer. When his fame becomes too much he simply moves on to other cities. A crucial healing takes place the healing of a leper. This is a Messianic sign and Christ sends him to the High Priest to offer a sacrifice for his cleansing. There had never been an offering made like this before. The religious leaders knew that this sign was in need of investigation. So then set in motion an investigation as to the Messianic claims of this healer. The first stage would be a ten day rabbinical investigation of his preaching. They would not come to talk but to listen. Then they would report back to the High Priest.
- Who was John and what was his unique mission?
- What preparation does Christ have at the beginning of his ministry?
- Why does Christ find so many sick people in lsrael?