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-LESSON 10: Mark 8

by Dr. D ~

Mark 8- Things you don’t see everyday:

Vs. 6-9  Jesus feeds 4,000 men + women & children.

Vs. 22-26  Jesus heals a blind man.

Vs. 29  Peter is inspired by the Holy Spirit to proclaim that Jesus is the ‘annointed one’, Messiah , or Christ (Greek).

Vs. 31  Jesus predicts his own suffering, death, & resurrection.

Vs. 32-33  Peter is now influenced by the wrong ‘spirit’, and rejects what Jesus just predicted.

Vs. 38-9:1  Jesus references his own future coming in power & glory.

Vs. 1-10:  Jesus Feeds 4,000 Plus

Jesus has compassion on the crowd following him.  The people have been with him for 3 days without food, & many have come considerable distances.  He is concerned that many would suffer along the way if they were sent home hungry. Again, the disciples are seeming clueless, in spite of the feeding of 5,000+ in Chapter 6.  Again, there was considerable food left over after everyone was filled.

Vs. 11-13:  The Pharisees Ask for A Sign

Jesus & his disciples had just recently left the scene of the feeding of 4,000+, and now they come across a group of Pharisees sent to ‘test’ Jesus.  They are now across the lake in the region of Dalmanutha (Magadan).  Jesus has healed 100s of people, feed thousands, & yet they ask for a sign?  This event is like Nazareth, no major miracles or healing are recorded here.  No ‘sign’ or miracle can ever really satisfy those who have no faith, and are fully vested their unbelief.  If Jesus did a miracle here, they would undoubtedly claim that he did it through the power of the evil one.  Many are like that today, so convinced that miracles have ceased, that if a healing does happen, they are concerned about it being a deception of the enemy.  Meanwhile, lives are changed, people come to Christ, God is praised & His Kingdom is advanced.

Vs. 14-21  The Disciples & ‘The Yeast of The Pharisees’

Jesus tells the disciples to “Watch out for the yeast of the Pharisees and that of Herod.”  The disciples are concerned that he is criticizing them for not bringing any bread. ‘Leaven’ was traditionally a symbol of sin, during religious rituals & during the Passover, only ‘unleavened’ bread was used.  Jesus is warning his people to beware of the influence of the Pharisees, their major sin here was unbelief, & theological blindness. They failed to see the current move of God in the ministry of Jesus.  His own disciples don’t really get it, even though they have witnessed all the healings & miracles.  They too, have a prescribed & determined understanding of what the Messiah is supposed to do.  Jesus surprises them time and again.  They would have undoubtedly preferred Jesus to co-operate with the noted religious leaders and further the cause.  After all, wasn’t the Messiah supposed to take over the whole country in a miraculous way?

Vs. 22-26  Healing of A Blind Man

Jesus lead the blind man outside of the village.  A blind person’s comfort zone would have been in the familiar surroundings of the village.  Here, the man must depend totally on Jesus to guide him.  Not only is the man now in an unfamiliar environment, but Jesus spits in his eyes and then touches him.  One wonders what the blind man was thinking at this point.

He begins to see, but the healing is not complete. He says that “people…look like trees walking around”.  Perhaps at one time he could see and somehow lost his sight.  Or maybe he had run into enough trees in his life, that it was easy to imagine what one might look like.  Nevertheless, the healing was only partial.  It is instructive, that Jesus asks for feedback, and then continues to pray for his complete healing once more.  I have heard some well meaning Christians teach that one should only pray once, & then leave the healing in God’s hands.  Fortunately for the Blind man, Jesus continues until a full healing is accomplished.

Vs. 27-30  Who Do People Say That I Am?

Jesus asks his disciples what the people are him.  Is he John The Baptist, Elijah, or just one of the prophets?  Then he asks them what they think.  Peter gets it right–“You are the Christ”. But Jesus is not yet ready for them to proclaim him as such, and he warns them to tell no one.  Why? The timing was not right for Jesus to be revealed as the Messiah.

Vs. 31-33  Jesus Predicts His Own Death & Resurrection

Jesus tells his disciples that the time would come that he would be rejected, suffer, be killed, and raise again after 3 days.  Peter contradicts Jesus,  after all, this was not the scenario that they had been raised upon.  The Messiah was supposed to kick the Romans out and take over.  The disciples thought that they were going to rule with Jesus.

Earlier, Peter got it right, but here he is so wrong that Jesus rebukes him,  and proclaims that thinking originated from an evil source.

Vs. 34-38  Jesus: “Follow Me”

Jesus has hundreds of people, even thousands at times, following him & hanging on his every word.  Here he identifies what it means to be a ‘real’ follower or disciple & it is insctructive for us today.

Those who want to really be a part of his work, are called upon to set aside their own priorities in life, and live according to his guidance, both in the scriptures & by his Holy Spirit.  Many may call themselves Christians,  but it is those who live by his teachings and have publically identified with him, those are the ones who will be caught up to meet him when he comes in his glory with the angels.

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