Mark (Program #12) – The Parables of the Kingdom (2)
All genuine Christian believers love to hear the preaching of the gospel. We admire greatly those whom the Lord had raised up with the gift of evangelism and most of us prayed fervently for the spread of the gospel. But as such believers we should also asked ourselves a couple of basic questions regarding the gospel.
First, what is the gospel? Then, what is the goal of the gospel? If our answer to the first question did not incorporated the realization that the gospel really is just Christ Himself then we need some further enlightenment. And if our answer to the question in regarding to the goal of the gospel was something along the line that the goal of the gospel is to save sinners so that they can go to heaven then we should pray as Paul the apostle prayed that the Father in His mercy would grant us a spirit of wisdom and revelation in the full knowledge of Him.
Mark (Program #11) – The Parables of the Kingdom (1)
The true gospel of God always issues in the kingdom of God. In the gospel of Mark chapter 4 there are 4 parables of the kingdom of God.
Prior to chapter 4 we had seen the beginning with its contents in Mark chapter 1 and the ways of carrying out the gospel service with the auxiliary acts in chapter 2 and 3. So the simple message here is that the gospel issues in the kingdom of God.
Mark (Program #1) – The Slave-Savior’s Auxiliary Acts for the Gospel Service (1) & (2)
The gospel of Mark is not a book concerning the great doctrines of the Christian faith. Much more it is a book of many cases that illustrate the reality of the gospel being carried out even lived out by the Slave Savior Jesus.
Early on in the book on the third chapter there is an account of the Lord instructing His followers to prepare a boat so that He can escaped the large crowd, the pressing throng that had come out to Galilee to see this One who was performing miracles and healing the sick. It was because of the pressing of this large crowd had become a frustration to the real seeking ones who did not desire to be part of great new religious movement but rather longed for a simple, intimate touch with the Lord Jesus Himself.
Chapter 5 shows us such an intimate encounter, “When she heard the things concerning Jesus, she came up in the crowd behind Him and touched His garment, And immediately Jesus, realizing in Himself that power had gone out of Him, turned around in the crowd and said, Who touched My garments?“
Mark (Program #9) – The Ways the Slave-Savior Carried Out His Gospel Service (4)
By the time Jesus was ready to begin His earthly ministry, a well established God ordained religious system was firmly entrenched in the land of Palestine. But as the very God Himself who was the fulfillment and reality of all of the components of that established religion you would think that He would had taken a great care to approach the leaders of that religion and to bring them into His ministry.
But the record of the New Testament reveals quite the opposite. The gospels, in particularly the gospel of Mark revealed that Jesus showed no interest in maintaining the old religion with its’ traditions and rituals. Even those were among the ones that God had originally instituted such as the Sabbath.
Rather, Jesus offended the religious community to the uttermost by breaking the Sabbath regulation repeatedly and revealing that as the Lord of the Sabbath He was well within His authority to use the Sabbath to care for His people instead of as a religious fetter to bind them and even to kill them.
Mark (Program #8) – The Ways the Slave-Savior Carried Out His Gospel Service (3)
After opening with the clear picture of meaning and contents of the glad tidings of the gospel. The book of Mark then give us the 5 cases in which the Lord Jesus carries out the gospel in His dealing with so many fallen people. The first of these cases involved a paralytic man who not only received healing from the Lord, but even more importantly at least in its’ significance was the forgiveness of sins. We then had the case of a saved sinners, Matthew, the tax collector preparing a feast for His Savior and for many of His friends. This case was a case of enjoyment.
Three additional cases followed in chapter 2, and the first part of chapter 3. Each one depicting the carrying out of His gospel service. A gospel not only of forgiveness and of enjoyment but of joy, of satisfaction and freedom as well.
We come to another enjoyable, joy-filled, satisfying and liberating message from this life study of Mark.
Mark (Program #7) – The Ways the Slave-Savior Carried Out His Gospel Service (2)
Mark chapter 2 gives us the account of the Lord Jesus as the Slave-Savior carrying out His gospel service to care for the need of fallen people. It’s a marvelous chapter that shows us 5 cases or incidents, each one demonstrating this loving care in a particular way meeting the need of all manner of weak, sick and sinful people.
What a picture of the glad tidings being lived out in their midst! Of course, not all the people are eager and happy to see such a manifestation of the reality and the enjoyment of God. The scribes and the pharisees, the self-righteous and religious among the people were indignant that their own the authority and their time on the traditions were completely ignored by the Lord Jesus. For as He Himself told them, “those who were strong have no need of a physician but those who are ill. I did not come to call the righteous but sinners.“
Mark (Program #6) – The Ways the Slave-Savior Carried Out His Gospel Service (1)
The gospel of Mark is unique in many ways among the four gospel accounts of the life and ministry of the Lord Jesus on the earth. One of the unique aspects of Mark, is that, it is arranged according to the actual historical sequence of events. Well, this can make it more difficult to study and understand but the divine and sovereign arrangement is really quite marvelous.
Chapter 1 for example, presents us with the complete contains of the gospel. And chapter 2 follows then with 5 cases illustrate how the Lord Jesus as the slave savior carry out the gospel in His service to all the weak, hungry and needy people. The first of these 5 cases is a really marvelous account that when understood correctly open the way for all us, fallen sinners to enter into the rich gospel of the Lord Jesus Christ.
Mark (Program #5) – The Contents of the Slave-Savior’s Gospel Service (1) & (2)
The book of Mark opens with these words, “The beginning of the gospel of Jesus Christ, the Son of God,” It then reveals that this gospel is really the fulfillment of the types, the promises and the prophesies of the Old Testament. Along with the removal of the custody of the law. But Mark chapter 1 goes further because it shows us not what just the gospel is but the content of the gospel. This gospel is not something vague but rich in its’ details. And in this chapter, chapter 1 which is divided into 5 sections. We see the rich content of the gospel of Jesus Christ, the Son of God.
Mark (Program #4) – The Beginning of the Gospel and the Initiation of the Slave-Savior (2)
Each of the four gospels is unique in how it begins. The gospel of John begins with Jesus Christ in eternity past. Matthew began with the generations of Jesus Christ the Son of David, the king. Luke also presents us with the genealogy but not in the line of the kingship. Luke’s introduction shows us Jesus as the genuine and proper man.
Mark on the other hand does not begin with any reference to the origin of the man, Jesus. Rather it begins this way. “The beginning of the gospel of Jesus Christ, the Son of God,” Notice is not the gospel of Jesus or the gospel of the Son of God. But the gospel of Jesus Christ, the Son of God. This is a marvelous beginning to Mark’s gospel because it highlights both His divinity as well as His humanity.
Mark (Program #3) – The Beginning of the Gospel and the Initiation of the Slave-Savior (1)
Matthew, Luke and John all begin one way or another with the origin of Jesus Christ. Matthew shows us His kingly genealogy. Luke, His human genealogy. And John, His divine, eternal origin as the Son of God. But Mark begins not with the genealogy rather with the gospel. “The beginning of the gospel of Jesus Christ.” What is the gospel? Well, Roman tells us that the gospel is the glad tidings, the good news. The reality of that good news is Jesus Christ our savior. And as Mark shows us the slave of God serving His people.