Archive

Posts Tagged ‘Mark’

“Stand here where we can see you.”~~Jesus

November 10, 2012 Leave a comment

Jesus is in church. He found a man with a crippled hand.

The Deacons (Pharisees) had their eyes on Jesus to see if he would heal him, hoping to catch him in breaking a church rule. Jesus knows this. And so He is deliberate. He says to the man, “Stand here where we can see you.”

Then he spoke to the people: “What kind of action suits Sunday best? Doing good or doing evil? Helping people or leaving them helpless?” No one said a word. Imagine, they were completely silent. This is stunning that they can’t answer this question.

He looked them in the eye, one after another, angry now, furious at their hard-nosed religion. He said to the man, “Hold out your hand.” He held it out—it was as good as new! The Deacons (Pharisees) got out as fast as they could, sputtering about how they would join forces with Herod’s followers and ruin him.

Jesus is deliberate. His challenge to us is clear. He wants everyone to know the rules aren’t helpful if they don’t focus on doing what God wants.

“Stand here where we can see you.”~~Jesus (Mark 3:3 The Message)

“Isaiah was right about frauds like you, hit the bull’s-eye in fact.” ~~Jesus

Jesus spends special time with religious people. He is direct always. Are we frauds? It is a question to ask ourselves. In this situation, it was a statement not a question.

The Pharisees, along with some religion scholars who had come from Jerusalem, gathered around him. They noticed that some of his disciples weren’t being careful with ritual washings before meals. Seriously, this is all they had to think about. The Pharisees—Jews in general, during that time—would never eat a meal without going through the motions of a ritual hand-washing, with an especially vigorous scrubbing if they had just come from the market (to say nothing of the scouring they’d give jugs and pots and pans). Of course, we have our religious ceremonies now. We pray before meals, even when we eat out. We go to church. We tell people we will pray for them when they are sick or someone in their family dies.

So, on this occasion, the  religion scholars asked, “Why do your disciples flout the rules, showing up at meals without washing their hands?” Jesus has questions for me.  Am I more concerned with saying the right thing than doing what God wants right at that minute? Is my heart not in it? Do I just pretend to worship God? Do I use Jesus? Do I ditch God’s commands? Do I only care about the latest religious trend or fad?

Jesus looks me in the eye and asks me these questions. He isn’t cruel. He just confronts me.

May my love for God and what He wants in my life rule every day. May I fulfill His goal for my life. May I do what He wants.

Jesus has an answer, “Isaiah was right about frauds like you, hit the bull’s-eye in fact: These people make a big show of saying the right thing, but their heart isn’t in it. They act like they are worshiping me, but they don’t mean it. They just use me as a cover for teaching whatever suits their fancy, Ditching God’s command and taking up the latest fads.” Mark 7 (Message)

Categories: Devotion Tags: , , ,

“Live well, live blessed! Be healed of your plague.” ~~Jesus

You have  suffered a condition of hemorrhaging for twelve years—a long succession of physicians have treated you. Your treatment hasn’t gone well.  The doctors have taken all your money. You are now worse off than you were before you started getting medical help. You’ve heard about Jesus. You slipped in from behind and touched his robe. You’re thinking to yourself, “If I can put a finger on his robe, I can get well.” The moment you do it, the flow of blood dried up. You can feel the change and know your plague is over and done with.

When that happened, Jesus felt energy discharging from his body. He turned around to the crowd and asked, “Who touched my robe?”  His disciples say, “What are you talking about? With this crowd pushing and jostling you, you’re asking, ‘Who touched me?’ Dozens have touched you!” But Jesus is persistent and  went on asking, looking around to see who had done it. The woman, knowing what had happened, knowing she was the one, stepped up in fear and trembling, knelt before him, and gave him the whole story. She took a huge risk. Jesus knows when we do that. He actually demands that we have courage and take risks of faith. For ourselves and for others. When we take risks of faith, we will be healed. That is just the way He is.

So Jesus says to her.

“Daughter, you took a risk of faith, and now you’re healed and whole. Live well, live blessed! Be healed of your plague.”

Categories: Devotion Tags: , , , ,

“Who touched my robe?” ~~Jesus

Jesus is wired with the power of God. God’s energy flows through Jesus continuously. So much so, when a sick woman touches His robe, the energy flows out. What happens? She is healed instantly.Jesus senses this has happened. He knows it is an act of faith.

We have the same Holy Spirit in us. Are we in tune with His power, His energy?

May it be so.

At the same moment, Jesus felt energy discharging from him. He turned around to the crowd and asked, “Who touched my robe?” (Mark 5:30 MSG)

“Why all this busybody grief and gossip?” ~~Jesus

We get consumed our feelings. Jesus challenges us to move beyond that and see His world. He can provoke us to sarcasm. We see and feel reality. We are sad beyond belief. Jesus is abrupt with us. We need Him to challenge us. We tell Jesus He doesn’t know what He is talking about. We really say that to Him.

He doesn’t listen to us, thank God. He knows what His Father wants to do. He does it. In spite of us and all our sarcasm. He raises the girl from the dead. That is what God wanted to do. He is God. He has a plan.

He permitted no one to go in with him except Peter, James, and John. They entered the leader’s house and pushed their way through the gossips looking for a story and neighbors bringing in casseroles. Jesus was abrupt: “Why all this busybody grief and gossip? This child isn’t dead; she’s sleeping.” Provoked to sarcasm, they told him he didn’t know what he was talking about. Mark 5:37-40

“The Son of Man is no lackey to the Sabbath. He’s in charge!” ~~Jesus

What is more important? Rules and regulations? Or the Ruler?

Jesus deals with the problem of “being religious” head on. He is in charge. That is the central issue to be dealt with. Do I believe it and act on it? Will I today?

“The Son of Man is no lackey to the Sabbath. He’s in charge!” ~~Jesus

Categories: Devotion Tags: , ,

“Go home to your own people. Tell them your story—what the Master did, how he had mercy on you.” ~~Jesus

February 8, 2012 Leave a comment

Jesus wants us to tell the story of what He has done for us, the mercy He has had on us. It is our story that can’t be denied. Our encounter with Him has changed everything. The new world we live in is so vastly different than this world.

His demand, “Go ..” “Tell …”

“Go home to your own people. Tell them your story—what the Master did, how he had mercy on you.” ~~Jesus

Categories: Devotion Tags: , ,

“Get up. Pick up your stretcher and go home.” ~~Jesus to the paraplegic

February 4, 2012 Leave a comment

The man believed Jesus could heal him. His friends believed it so much that when they couldn’t get in the front entrance, they removed part of the roof and lowered the paraplegic on his stretcher. Now that got Jesus attention. Jesus still, after all this, has one more thing he wants the man to do. He allows the man an opportunity to demonstrate his faith. And he does. And he walks out of there. And those who doubted Jesus rubbed their eyes. They found it hard to believe.

“Get up. Pick up your stretcher and go home.” And the man did it—got up, grabbed his stretcher, and walked out, with everyone there watching him. They rubbed their eyes, incredulous—and then praised God, saying, “We’ve never seen anything like this!”

Categories: Devotion Tags: , ,

“Why are you so skeptical?” ~~Jesus to religious scholars (and now, Page 2)

January 31, 2012 Leave a comment

Jesus had said to a paraplegic, “Son, I forgive your sins.” This infuriated the religious scholars. They whispered “He can’t talk that way! That’s blasphemy! God and only God can forgive sins.” Catch that? Blasphemy. Who is Jesus to forgive sins? Jesus asks them why they are so skeptical. There He is, the Son of God. He can forgive sins. God has given Him that authority. He also knows that may be a tough pill to swallow. So, he says “Which is simpler: to say to the paraplegic, ‘I forgive your sins,’ or say, ‘Get up, take your stretcher, and start walking’? Well, just so it’s clear that I’m the Son of Man and authorized to do either, or both . . .” (he looked now at the paraplegic), “Get up. Pick up your stretcher and go home.” And the man did it—got up, grabbed his stretcher, and walked out, with everyone there watching him. They rubbed their eyes, incredulous—and then praised God, saying, “We’ve never seen anything like this!”

They started out skeptical and ended up praising God. That is Jesus and that is us some days. Starting out skeptical. Ending up praising God. It is our choice.

“Why are you so skeptical?~~Jesus to religious scholars

Am I moving Jesus to compassion like this man?

January 21, 2012 Leave a comment

This man came begging to Jesus. He wanted to be healed like nothing else. He knew Jesus could heal him. This moved Jesus deeply. He healed him.

Am I moving Jesus to compassion? Am I desperate for Jesus’ touch?

A leper came to him, begging on his knees, “If you want to, you can cleanse me.” Deeply moved, Jesus put out his hand, touched him, and said, “I want to heal you. Be clean.” Then and there the leprosy was gone, his skin smooth and healthy. Jesus dismissed him with strict orders: “Say nothing to anyone. Take the offering for cleansing that Moses prescribed and present yourself to the priest. This will validate your healing to the people.” But as soon as the man was out of earshot, he told everyone he met what had happened, spreading the news all over town. So Jesus kept to out-of-the-way places, no longer able to move freely in and out of the city. But people found him, and came from all over.

Categories: Devotion Tags: , ,

Am I offended by Jesus?

January 13, 2012 Leave a comment

In His hometown, the people He grew up with were offended by Jesus. While they knew Him, they didn’t see what He was doing now. They saw Him for who he was, not who He is. They were stubborn and refused to open up to Him in His fullness of power.

May I see Jesus for who He is today!! May I see what He is doing, not what He is not doing.

Jesus told them, ‘A prophet has little honor in his hometown, among his relatives, on the streets he played in as a child.’ Jesus wasn’t able to do much of anything there—he laid hands on a few sick people and healed them, that’s all. He couldn’t get over their stubbornness. He left and made a circuit of the other villages, teaching. Mark 6:1-6

Categories: Devotion Tags: , , ,

Provoked to sarcasm

November 27, 2011 Leave a comment

Am I one Jesus brings into the room with Him or am I the one provoked to sarcasm and left out of His presence? This is an essential question. Imagine telling Jesus he didn’t know what he was talking about. Oh my goodness.

Peter, James and John got in. I want to be one of the ones who goes in with Jesus. I don’t want to be sarcastic with what our Lord can do. Nothing is impossible for Him!!

He permitted no one to go in with him except Peter, James, and John. They entered the leader’s house and pushed their way through the gossips looking for a story and neighbors bringing in casseroles. Jesus was abrupt: ‘Why all this busybody grief and gossip? This child isn’t dead; she’s sleeping.’ Provoked to sarcasm, they told him he didn’t know what he was talking about.

But when he had sent them all out, he took the child’s father and mother, along with his companions, and entered the child’s room. He clasped the girl’s hand and said, ‘Talitha koum,’ which means, ‘Little girl, get up.’ At that, she was up and walking around! This girl was twelve years of age. They, of course, were all beside themselves with joy. He gave them strict orders that no one was to know what had taken place in that room. Then he said, ‘Give her something to eat.’ Mark 5:39-43 

Categories: Devotion Tags: , , ,

Locusts and wild field honey

September 3, 2011 Leave a comment

John paved the way for Jesus. He set the stage. It is all about life-change. We know we have missed the goal that God is mind for us. We need to make it clear that we understand that.  Being baptized with Jesus into death and resurrection gives us a changed life. It is His new plan for us. We can reach God’s goal for us. We don’t have to live a life that misses that. He is in an amaziing mood and gives us this gift simply because He loves us.

Now how great is that?

John the Baptizer appeared in the wild, preaching a baptism of life-change that leads to forgiveness of missing God’s goal for us. People thronged to him from Judea and Jerusalem and, as they confessed their knowledge of missing God’s goal, were baptized by him in the Jordan River into a changed life. John wore a camel-hair habit, tied at the waist with a leather belt. He ate locusts and wild field honey. Mark 1:4-6

I can hear

He is whispering. He is talking. He has some amazing things to say. In what I read. In what I hear in my heart. I have ears. I can hear.

There are also things He is not saying. Am I asking questions about things He has nothing to say? Am I focused on what He is saying or not saying?

Then Jesus said, “He who has ears to hear, let him hear.” –Mark 4:9

May I listen to His word. May I hear what He is saying to me today.

Categories: Uncategorized Tags: , ,

Courage

99 out of 100 things we worry about never happen. And yet, we continue to be afraid. Jesus is ever present letting us to know that we need to take courage. He says “It is I”. He is here. Do we hear Him. He says “Don’t be afraid”. Do we hear Him.

He gives us courage in His world. His world is here and now. On earth, as it is in heaven right now.

Jesus said, “Take courage! It is I.
Don’t be afraid.” Mark 6:50

May I take courage. May I have courage. May I hear Jesus.

Categories: Uncategorized Tags: , ,

He is not here

It is a simple message but the most powerful one I can know. I should not be afraid. Jesus was crucified. He has risen! God so loved me that He sent him to redeem me. The price has been paid and He has risen, defeating death.

What an amazing God we have! And how fortunate I am to have Him! Because Jesus was raised from the dead, I’ve been given a brand-new life!

May I fully know the power of the risen Saviour.

But when they looked up, they saw that the stone, which was very large, had been rolled away. As they entered the tomb, they saw a young man dressed in a white robe sitting on the right side, and they were alarmed. ‘Don’t be alarmed,’ he said. ‘You are looking for Jesus the Nazarene, who was crucified. He has risen! He is not here. Mark 16

Categories: Uncategorized Tags: ,

Am I willfully stupid?

January 23, 2011 Leave a comment

Some days I just don’t get it. Am I being willfully stupid? Jesus knew the truth. It is not what goes in that causes contamination. It is what is in my heart. That is what counts.

What is in my heart will be demonstrated then in what I think, say and do. It works from the inside out.

May I have a heart after God. May nothing else matter.

Jesus said, ‘Are you being willfully stupid?’ …. Mark 7:14-23

Categories: Uncategorized Tags: ,

We've never seen anything like this!!!

Jesus has this way of baffling the religious community. The reaction is “He can’t talk that way” or “He can’t do that”.

When Jesus arrives on the scene, miracles happen and religious people can’t control what he is doing. When Jesus does His outrageous miracles, we rub our eyes. We’ve never seen anything like this. He is doing what He sees the Father doing. He is bringing heaven to earth. Wow!!!

We have never seen anything like what Jesus can do. May we believe that in our core.

Some religion scholars sitting there started whispering among themselves, “He can’t talk that way! That’s blasphemy! God and only God can forgive sins.” Jesus knew right away what they were thinking, and said, “Why are you so skeptical? Which is simpler: to say to the paraplegic, ‘I forgive your sins,’ or say, ‘Get up, take your stretcher, and start walking’? Well, just so it’s clear that I’m the Son of Man and authorized to do either, or both . . .” (he looked now at the paraplegic), “Get up. Pick up your stretcher and go home.” And the man did it—got up, grabbed his stretcher, and walked out, with everyone there watching him. They rubbed their eyes, incredulous—and then praised God, saying, “We’ve never seen anything like this!” (Mark 2:6-12 The Message) 

Follow

Get every new post delivered to your Inbox.

Join 6,827 other followers

%d bloggers like this: