Week 3(21-27 Jan.)
Sunday – Healing the Multitude
Scripture Reading: Mark 3:7-12
As the news of this man, Jesus, spread, so more and more people from seemingly everywhere were coming to Jesus. This begins what I call the glory days of Jesus’ ministry. There are so many people that Jesus had “to have a boat ready for him because of the crowd, so that they would not crush him.” As the crowd’s witness, Jesus continues to heal diseases and cast out demons with them recognizing that “You are the Son of God.” This would be a scene that, as a witness, would confirm to me that Jesus is the Son of God with faith in action.
Pastor’s Pondering: What would be your reaction if you were part of the crowd witnessing this man, Jesus?
Monday – Appointment of 12
Scripture Reading: Mark 3:13-19
The next action step we see Jesus make here is appointing the 12 disciples that would be the Apostles. These were people called to “proclaim the message and to have authority to cast out demons.” Talk about a glory day in ministry, to be called by Jesus from the crowd of followers to be able to minister like Jesus as an apostle. Though, there is one who’s position is to be the one to not be like Jesus but to betray Jesus as an apostle desiring not the glory of the Lord but the glory of the world.
Pastor’s Pondering: What does it mean to be called to ministry in a life of action like the 11 disciples/apostles and how might that also lead to a life of betrayal like Judas, who betrayed Jesus?
Tuesday – Answering Slander
Scripture Reading: Mark 3:20-27
With more and more people recognizing the glory of the Lord in Jesus, the scribes of the Pharisees came to discredit him as a man of God saying he himself is possessed by Beelzebul, the ruler of the demons. Jesus refutes them with common sense and logic, a kingdom divided against itself cannot stand. Instead, one must bind up the strong man of the house in order to plunder it. Obviously, Jesus is able cast out the demons because he has authority over them (and Satan) which is the glory of the Lord.
Pastor’s Pondering: How does this story teach and encourage us followers of Jesus in living our life of action with the glory of the Lord?
Wednesday – The Unforgivable Sin
Scripture Reading: Mark 3:28-30
The lesson of the unforgivable sin (Blasphemy of the Holy Spirit) comes as a result of the scribes/people accusing him of “having an unclean Spirit.” If one’s life of action is through the Holy Spirit then they cannot speak against the Holy Spirit. Only those without the Holy Spirit are able and willing to speak against/blaspheme the Holy Spirit. God’s house is not divided against itself. Especially since the Holy Spirit is not only the sign but the seal and the gift from Christ for God’s glory in us.
Pastor’s Pondering: What does it mean for someone to blaspheme the Holy Spirit and what is that action itself a sign of when witnessed?
Thursday – True Family
Scripture Reading: Mark 3:31-35
Christ continues to teach about the unified glory of the Lord in that “Whoever does the will of God is my brother and sister and mother.” To truly be in God’s family is live a life of action like Jesus doing the “will of God.” It is to recognize that all who repent, receiving forgiveness of sin, taking up the cross of Jesus and follow himing are those who do the “will of God” and become family – God’s family! That is the true Kingdom, true Family, true Church are those who have taken the action of coming to Christ.
Pastor’s Pondering: How can we recognize those that are a part of God’s true family?
Friday – Sower Parable
Scripture Reading: Mark 4:1-9
Christ’s next action in life is to teach a parable to the crowds that gather. The parable of the Sower is told as an action story of a Sower of Seeds that Jesus ends with, “For those who have ears to hear listen!” This doesn’t mean that the seed is corn but more importantly that the action we are to take in listening to Jesus is to have “ears to hear.” That means not just listening and leaving like a form of entertainment but listening and thinking about what is being said like a form of education. In order to have faith in action we have to have faith to Listen to learn to live.
Pastor’s Pondering: How can we have ears that hear and ears that don’t hear?
Saturday – Reasons for Parable
Scripture Reading: Mark 4:10-12
When those around Jesus ask him why He teaches in parables, he shares with them, “To you has been given the secret of the kingdom of God, but for those outside, everything comes in parables…” The difference is the action of the people. To those truly following Jesus and are there asking him questions, “secrets of the kingdom are revealed.” But, to those outside because they didn’t stick around to ask questions and truly listen…”they may indeed look, but not perceive, and may indeed listen, but not understand.”
Pastor’s Pondering: How is the action of staying with Jesus, truly listening to Jesus key to having faith in action?