Re:Verse reading – Mark 7:1-23 (day six)
The Pharisees were watching Jesus’ disciples from afar, always bent on finding fault, shortcomings. They came by them easy enough, these were fishermen and tax collectors after all. Point, gasp, sneer, all part of their judgemental vernacular. Look they didn’t wash their hands; can’t even follow the simplest of traditions.
Look, it is easy to find fault in others; it doesn’t take much time or effort. It is easy to point, or roll our eyes, quietly feeling better about ourselves. It takes more effort to encourage others, to be a help not a hinderance, but the gains far outweigh any sacrifice.
What are you watching for? Be careful; the watching can keep you from loving and serving others.
Re:Verse reading– Mark 6:1-13 (day seven)
Jesus marveled because of their unbelief. Mark 6:6
People were amazed by the formerly demon possessed man’s story, the people of Capernaum were amazed by Jesus’ teaching, now it is Jesus’ turn to be amazed, but not by their great faith, but by their unbelief. It begs the question, why was he so amazed by their unbelief? It could be that he was amazed by their hardness of heart.
There is nothing truer, more real, than God. This is why blaspheme is such a big deal, it ascribes evil to that which is clearly of God (the Holy Spirit). It is akin to denying that the source of warmth on your skin belongs to the heat radiating from the Sun, and then denying that the Sun even exists. Jesus’ teaching, healing, and even his very person were literal statements of an obvious divine reality. His hometown would not have it; they denied the Son.
The greatest way we acknowledge the reality of the Son is to enjoy his presence and to do what he asks of us. How can you embrace the truth of Jesus today?
Re:Verse reading–Mark 2:1-12 (day six)
What kind of faith gets Jesus’ attention? What kind of faith merits His forgiveness? Jesus doesn’t always heal in this direction, faith first. He doesn’t always say, “your faith has made you well.” Sometimes he chooses to heal first and faith comes later. But not in this case. So what caught the savior’s eye? What kind of faith pleases God?
Hebrews 11:6 tells us, “Without faith it is impossible to please God, for whoever would draw near to HIM must believe that HE exists and rewards those who seek HIM.” What is clear is that all their hope began and ended with this man Jesus. They didn’t know all there was to know about Jesus, but they believed in all they knew, all of what he had taught, and all he had done.
How about you? With all that you know about Jesus, this side of the Cross, is your faith pleasing to God?