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3. True Discipleship

Conrad Vine
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Conrad Vine

President of Adventist Frontier Missions

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  • July 25, 2020
    8:30 AM
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Good morning everybody. I will sort out my stuff here just. As good to be with you here today and to share the Sabbath hours together and it's a privilege to stand before you in the pulpit and to share with you part of the Word of God I'd like to say a word of thanks to a single This morning I was a beautiful song it matters to us it matters to you than it matters to the master would have beautiful truth was in calculating those words thank you so much for those words. Today we're going to continue through our discussion on the Gospel of Mark last week we looked at Mark chapter one in March up to and today logically speaking we're going to pick up a mock chapter 3 in a 2nd service Mark Chapter 4 reminds me of Calvin actually Calvin the switch reformer who was working his way through the book of Romans and that I was talking it took him many years of verse verse every week he got to about Romans 9 when he went off to France for an extended period of time for some years when he came back Guess where he picked up again the last verse of the preaching or the Book of Romans and I don't think his congregation ever complained about that though because the Word of God is alive what I find with the Word of God is that you may preach you may preach from a chapter and you may think the message of the chapter is x but somebody in the pews here's why and somebody else here is easy because we all come with different conditions of the human heart and God speaks to us in different ways as we hear the Word of God expounded to us and so is my privilege to some before you today and to share with you where God is impressed by my heart for got Mark Chapter 3 for those who are watching online will give you a warm welcome again with the life you can be joining us on the Sabbath day revenue are around the world and also as we open the Bible invites you to open your Bibles to Mark Chapter 3 we'll be working our way through this chapter today or this morning as we open the Bible ask let's by our heads and we offer the Holy Spirit to bless us our Heavenly Father. We want to thank you for the Word of God that in the indeed is living that appears at the soul like a 2 edged soul sword life thank you that you would like a searchlight that search then to every nook and cranny of our lives and reveal to us selves of things we may not even want to admit about ourselves and so we are with a father as we chew on this passage of the Word of God that the same spirit who inspired this writing will speak to our hearts and has passed to Dennis shared in his presence morning that we will be different people tonight to those who rose this morning I made that change policy because your spirit is shaping our hearts and what I ask that you speak through me and for me in Jesus name I pray Amen. All right so so far they marked up to one and 2 what have we seen so far much up to one we've seen Jesus House authority he has authority over disease he has authority over the demonic and he has the authority to call disciples in mock up to 2 though we see that things start to go wrong because Jesus is preaching in the lepers of being cleansed the the demons are being cast out of people the sick of being cured and the people being fed spiritually and there are large crowds following Jesus but all is not as it seems popular applause isn't necessarily a sign that something truly good is happening because in March up to 2 the the religious or forties are starting to and gauging their opposition to Jesus Christ and in March up to to their thinking in their hearts who is it that can forgive sin isn't only God can forgive sin so why does Jesus claim the authority to forgive sin as we go through March up to today is a series of of conflicts between Jesus and the religious leaders conflicts about fostering conflicts about the keeping of the Sabbath conflicts about how to deal with sinners with Jesus he associates he eats with tax collectors and sinners he gets with what might be called the dregs of polite society back then in his 1st century Palestine and so there is Brutus brewing conflict between Jesus and the religious Wolf. And so as we come to March up to 3 Mark is continuing to focus on the question of the authority of Jesus and he's talking 1st about the fact that Jesus will 40 is a deadly authority and there are 3 kinds will for a tomb going to look through today how many authorities are going to be today 3 because everybody remembers things in 3 Chapter one G.'s has demons disciples and disease and today we see that Jesus has 3 kinds of authority and the 1st of those kinds of authority is found in the 1st 6 verses of this chapter Jesus has a deadly. Or 30 and what do I mean by that So open your Bibles are going to pick up the story Mark chapter 3 and verses one and 2 and it says There again he that is Jesus entered the synagogue and a man was there with a with the hands they watched him to see whether he would cure him on the Sabbath so that they might accuse him so Jesus as was his custom you know from Luke Chapter 4 he worships in the synagogues on the Sabbath day he is in the synagogue and on the Sabbath day and there was a man there with a withered hand technically it's a dried up hand it's a stiff hand it is a hand that is of no use to anybody but more critically for the purpose of this story this is a chronic injury this is not an acute or life threatening injury and that's the crux of the matter within this dispute with the Pharisees the Jewish regulations of the time stated that it was permissible to offer 1st aid to somebody to prevent a moon from becoming worse to prevent injury from causing death but that working towards a cure of a chronic disease was viewed as breaking the Sabbath and that was regarded as work and it must wait until the passing of the Sabbath hours this hand was chronically with it he hadn't just within that morning when he woke up in order of his bed and therefore this with that hand was beyond Sabbath intervention Jesus was not supposed to heal this man with a withered hand it says in verse 2 they were watching him and my english version says they watched him in the end lingering as they were watching him like they were continuing to watch and they were watching every motion that he was making every move you make every breath you take be watching you you might paraphrase this verse here they will be watching Jesus continually because they wanted to accuse him. And so was Jesus going to heal this man was Jesus going to let him suffer through the Sabbath day Jesus already had reputation as a Sabbath breaka as a boy. Fema as a friend of sinners and prostitutes as an apostate from religious custom would he heal this man with a withered hand or would he not and Jesus knows what they're thinking of so isn't verse 3 it said and Jesus said to the man who had the withered hand come forward. Now I don't know how many in this congregation here are watching online have a physical disability I notice 3 years ago when I broke my leg up in the Canadian Rockies I fell and snapped my tibia and fibula multiple places it wasn't very pleasant experience what I noticed afterwards was that when you have a physical ability disability you experience the world very differently the world is set up for people who are physically able to just for instance that August 6 weeks after my accident I had to give a talk up here and in order to get up there I couldn't get up here so they put me in an arm chair and they pointed me up on to the front of the platform here now people chuckled some of your chuckling now but for me it was kind of an embarrassing experience it was a humiliating experience or I can get up here on my own people with disabilities are often treated as if they're mentally deficient as well I notice that when I was I've come into church on crutches or I go to go to work or wherever it may be and people say Are you Ok I like my mind wasn't hurt by the breaking of my leg. Would you like some water so I can ask for Trev I want for to thank you very much that they talk down to you when you have a disability and people with disabilities have incredible gifts and abilities the fact that I broke my leg doesn't mean my mind has gone doesn't mean that the gifts that God has given me cannot flourish in flower for his honor and glory. You know and in this story here the healing of this man echoes through eternity for the honor and glory of God whom one lessons for us is that those with physical disabilities are just as gifted by God and we should value them and make space for them so they can serve God and they can use that gives for his own or in his glory and Jesus said to man with a hand come forward and you can imagine the horror in this man's mind having known that his handicap would become a speck a public spectacle the chances are he would have stayed in bed that Sabbath morning rolled over and hit the snooze button on the alarm clock Nobody wants their physical disability to become the object of public focus and public attention yet he comes forward I imagine that by implication because Jesus has latest stretch out your hands by implication he comes forward by that with a hand as well and truly covered within the folds of his garments I'm going to come forward but I'm not going to put my with hand on display for everybody to see and Jesus asks a question verse 4 Is it lawful to do good or to do harm on the Sabbath to save life or to kill and in truth this is 2 questions the 1st half relates to the man and the 2nd half relates to Jesus so let's deal with the 1st half of that question 1st is it lawful to do good or is it lawful to do harm on the Sabbath for Jesus' human need poses a moral imperative where good needs to be done there can be no neutrality and failure to do good when the arises is to contribution to human suffering or to perpetuate the evil around us it is thus not simply permissible to heal on the Sabbath it is morally right to heal on the Sabbath Jesus reorienting of thinking so the Sabbath is not a day for Lay activities as in lying down and going to sleep the Sabbath is a day to be a blessing to people to lift the burdens that people suffer and carry on day by day basis many of which lightness are crippled man who is hiding his crippled hand under his clothes. Jesus is calling us to be a blessing to help lift the burdens for those whose bones are not immediately obvious implies that we know one another we know what's going on in each other's lives we're open about the challenges we're facing as we're open about the challenges we're facing we allow somebody else to come in and if those burdens they are blessed and we are blessed but if I live such a private life and I come to church and everything is just fine thank you very much and nobody has any idea that life is a private hell for me how can I experience the blessing of God manifest through the Ministry of a brother or sister in my life and so Jesus says is it lawful to do good also to harm on the Sabbath by implication it is lawful it is not breaking the Sabbath to her life somebody is burdens it is altering the intent of the Sabbath day that people's burdens are lifted or join the Sabbath hours the authorities reaction though is one of anger in verse 5 this is Jesus looked around them with anger remember in chapter 3 verse from Chapter 2 when Jesus said to the Son by sins are forgiven me and then he looks around the scribes and Pharisees who are questioning in their hearts who is it they can forgive sin and God can forgive sin and Jesus looks around at them with anger in his heart now he looks around after another healing on the Sabbath day he looks around the rulers that and he's grieved at the hardness of the hops and so he says to the man Stretch out your hand the authorities response to the man Siling us is suffering is silence for those religious leaders true religion consists of theological correctness matters of ritual cleanliness purity on the fulfilling of legal requirements but Jesus is upset at the hardness of their hearts the greatest enemy of Divine Love is not oppositional malice to God but the hardness of the human hearts and human willful indifference to the suffering of those around us you might say that the test the acid test of all theology is its response to the weakest in the most vulnerable within our midst as God commanded the Israelites were to tell. Particular care of the widows you often means the aliens within them it's the single mothers struggling to pay their bills and so Jesus now responds to such human suffering the litmus test of true religion is its response to the suffering of those your neighbors your brothers and your sisters but the 2nd half of the question of Jesus does not really relate to the man he says it lawful to do good or to do harm on the Sabbath to save life or to kill and this is the question where Jesus use of his heavenly flirty becomes deadly What does it mean by to save life or to kill the 1st half of the question refers to the with man is it lawful to heal him on the Sabbath or not but now Jesus is talking about himself the man with the with hand is merely a pawn in the hands of those religious leaders seeking to kill Jesus because if Jesus makes a habit of violating the Sabbath your thirty's will have every excuse to kill him how Jesus response of the man with the with that hand will determine the response of the authorities to his ministry if he does not deal with it hand Jesus will be allowed to live if Jesus does heal them with that hand your thirty's will see his death Jesus come ons the man with the with a hand to stretch it out as he said to them stretch it out he stretched it out and his hand was restored this is the moment the man most feared to expose his handicap to public glad to have everybody glare about with a hand like it's a curiosity and he's terrified I mention and Jesus says stretch out your hand and he stretches out his family hand and to his delight he discovers that his hand was restored when it says His hand was restored You can read that 2 ways either in the act of stretching it out he discovers Oh it was already healed when it was hidden and by stepping out in faith in God Jesus I am instance stepping in sorry in stretching out my hand it to I discover that God. Already you know my hand or in stretching out my hand is an act of faith Jesus responds by you can read that verse 2 ways but whatever when you read it he stretched out his hand and his hand was restored just like with the paralytic in mock up to 2 faith is not a private confession of Jesus Christ but it is taking a public risk taking a public square and standing up for Jesus when it matters in front of a hostile audience trusting that Jesus indeed is indeed worthy of trust where no of the hope or source of hope can be trusted and Jesus of 30 is deadly in verse 6 is the Pharisees went out and they immediately conspired with the Herodian is against him how to destroy him now the Pharisees they were the keepers of the law when when the Greeks or the solutions had invaded Palestine 160 years before this happened also they had a ruler called Antiochus appear phonies and he determines that he was going to wipe out the Jewish faith and so he sacrificed pigs in the temple and he forced the religious leaders of the Jews to adopt hell mystical pagan ways but a party arose in response to the persecution of the pagan Jews that is known to history as the Pharisees they were the ones who stuck by the law they were the heroes of the people of Israel and many hundreds of them was slaughtered by this by the solutions because they wouldn't break the 10 commandments. So we give the Pharisees a bad rap but for 160 years they were the policy of the law they had stood up for the law they had died for the law as opposed to bowing down to the pagan gods of the solutions so the Pharisees were known as the the purists on the other hand the the Herodian zzz they were the they were the party of perpetual power you might say they were the ruling class of Washington d.c. doesn't matter what Poppy the name label is they're all the same people they're all the time and so with the Pharisees in the road eons they would normally at all do with the cello they were political enemies that Rodin's were accused of having sold out to the Romans they ruled on behalf of the Romans with the Sodje seas and the Pharisees were the all of the loyal opposition and these 2 groups they didn't like each other at all they hated each other but now Jesus healed this man with a with that hand and you have this bipartisan coalition Pharisees and arrowed Ians Republicans Democrats conservative and labor whichever way you want to describe it now they are united in their hatred of Jesus Christ not only of the Unites in their hatred but the end of the 6 it says they decay conspired how to destroy Jesus Jesus or 30 is used in a costly in a deadly manner to himself. And healing the latter in March up to one Jesus traded places with a leper and he bore the burdens of the left on. The Mark Chapter 2 Jesus a rising cause of the anger of the authorities by forgiving the politic of his sins and they're using him a blasphemy in their hearts which is a charge worthy of death but now in March up to 3 there openly conspiring to kill Jesus the opposition to Jesus is growing within the religious establishment of his day Jesus is giving his all literally that suffering humanity might be healed and reconciled with God So Jesus but Jesus does not plan to proclaim the good news on his own in this chapter he wishes those who he has saved to be partners in the plan of salvation and so he decides to call into commission His disciples and so whether it's Jesus has a deadly of 30 and incidentally for himself he also has a delegate so far to him these things work Indies as well you notice disease demons and disciples in chapter one and it's easy to remember I guess we have here a deadly authority now we move to the delegates of 30 March up to 3 in verse 13 and this is where Jesus calls the 12 as was read for us thank you sister in all scripture reading this morning we read there in verse 13 it said Jesus went up on the mountain and told him those whom he wanted and they came on to him Now we know but at this stage from the other gospels that Jesus is being followed by a large number of krauts these aren't just curious onlookers we actually know some of the names Joseph Asaba son Matthias we know their names from Acts Chapter one Verse 21 we know that Mary Magdalene Mary the mother of James the youngest of Jos is Salome they are also following Jesus we know that from other parts of the Gospels and yet as he chooses to delegate historicity he calls 12 from as wide a following to service his apostles and he says there in verse 13 he went up on a mountain mountains in the Scriptures asked. Signs of a revelation from God. Abraham met God at Mount Merapi Mount Sinai was a stage where God met Moses and the people of Israel and Lige or had the encounters with the prophets of Baal amount Kamel Jesus had had a revelation of His divine glory on the Mount of Transfiguration and then he gave his most famous I'm of all amounts of blessing by the Sea of Galilee Matthew 5 through 7 something important is about to happen a revelation of God It says that Jesus summoned all cold those whom he wanted disciples do not decide to follow Jesus to do him a favor. Jesus someone's us by his own heaven is divine authority out a cycle ship out following them Jesus is based on the call of Jesus a line without Jesus as the focus there is no such thing as discipleship or even of Christian community now rabbis in time of Jesus invited their students to come and learn but the about the Torah from the rabbi that is the teachings of Moses rabbis did not call disciples to follow them personally but disciples today are not called so much to focus on the Torah of the ultimate good but they are called to focus on Jesus and to be with him for he is the ultimate gift and good from God verses $1415.00 says he appointed 12 whom he also named apostles to be with him and to be sent out to proclaim the message and to have authority to cost out Jesus it says that to cast out demons Has he made or created 12 at that the language he echoes Genesis chapter one of verse one in the beginning God created God made the heavens and the earth Jesus is intending for his apostles and his disciples to be a new creation you cannot say the Gospels come into my life it has not been a change in your life when the Gospel enters your life there's a change within your life or any of your innermost being and so disciples are called in this passage. 1st and foremost verse 14 says that to be with Jesus discipleship therefore is a relationship for before it is a Tal's we are not God's beasts of burden we are his beloved without thought to being with him our subsequent service for God becomes dry and empty and lifeless but what current discipleship does not consist of what disciples can do for Jesus but what Jesus can make of us what he sees in us how he transforms us from sin is full of today into sayings for eternity and so to become that new creation that Jesus wants us to be we are called to spend time with him to look for his presence and to listen to his voice disciples news for us are also sent out to a call to be with Him We are also to be sent out to proclaim the word of the good news disciples of Jesus are not silent. If nobody knows you're a disciple of Jesus it's questionable whether you really are a disciple of Jesus if somebody is a Pats fan they'll tell you if somebody is a Steelers fan they'll tell you if somebody was comes from if somebody is a who Zia from Indiana yes or something from California they'll tell you you can tell when somebody is from you can tell them any of the values in their life from the way they dress from the way they speak in from the subject of their conversation and disciples of Jesus are called 1st and foremost to spend time with Jesus but that is not all that we are called to be to we also sent out to proclaim the message it says here to proclaim the message or to proclaim the word we are sent to share to discuss to announce not the weather all the n.f.l. all politics but the good news of what God has done in our lives and what he may do in the lives of those with whom we are speaking they share the story of Jesus they share what Jesus is doing and has done for them and the other thing that Jesus gave them was all pharmacy to cast out demons the authority is given to cost out demons tragically today many professed followers of Jesus have turned into entertainment the things that Jesus died to save us from our minds our hearts feast on the things that cause Jesus to go to calibrate. We allow demonic influences into our homes no hearts but in this passage here we are told and given of thorazine by Jesus Christ to overcome through his name but demonic forces that surround our homes disciples are not many not many defined by what we stand for what we stand against we stand against the principality of Satan and his demons and the temptations he puts in our hearts disciples I call today to resist and to confront evil in demonic forces not only in thought but in action and in verse 16 it says so he appointed the 12 Simon to me gave the name Peter James son of 70 and John the brother of James to whom he gave the name blotted G.'s that is Sons of funda These are guys with the fewest temper apparently and Andrew and Philip and Bartholomew Matthew and Thomas and James and of Alphaeus and Thaddeus and Simon the n.t. for activist and Judas Iscariot who betrayed him this is a very diverse group of Man Jesus calls himself there are 12 which is a reminder of the 12 tribes of Israel and for gentiles it's reminded that salvation deed is of the Jews as you read later in John $422.00 for the Jews it reminds of that Jesus that Israel fulfills its destiny only in relation to service to Jesus and what lessons can we learn about this this this group of 12 men lists for us a well firstly Jesus called Matthew Levi and Simon the Zealot Now Matthew Levi he was a tax collector he was a collaborates with the Romans and he calls Simon the Zealot The zealots were those who was that list for getting rid of the Romans and they were known for walking up in crowds with Colville bagus And you know giving someone between the rips and that person would drop dead these were sworn enemies this was like he called a police officer in Poland an anti for rights are important to follow Him These are diametrically opposed. When Jesus calls people the opposite sickle are historical or ethnic or religious all the rest of it the hatreds and animosities of the past ought to melt away the Jesus is creating a new humanity bonded together by a bond of heavenly love where does not matter the past where we've come from what matters is the future that we look forward to when Jesus calls us political Amity ethnic hatred class and economic divisions off themes of the past Jesus calls us to be new creations and rather than to bring the hatreds animosities of the past into the kingdom of God We call to radiate the principles of the Kingdom of God back to our fallen broken and painful world we are now a new creation the dividing lines of human society are done away with in the kingdom of God Secondly we know a lot about Simon Peter don't we we know about Thomas Thomas was a twin his name we didn't miss we read later in John's gospel means he was a twin He was a doubter unless I see the marks in his hands about my finger in his side I will not believe that doubting Thomas and Jesus met doubting Thomases acid test but look at some of the other names that. Buff Solomon Fadi this Simon the Canaan Does anybody know what these guys actually did after the resurrection in the book of Acts almost Does anybody know where these guys went now the 2 of there are traditions on the world some say that some of them went to North India some of them went to bangle Calcutta some of them went to Armenia some of them went down to Africa to Ethiopia and nobody really knows what these other apostles did we know about James and John and Simon Peter and Thomas we can talk about most of the cows come home but these other names we simply don't know where they went or what they did it is a reminder to us. The existence of God Church today is indebted to the faithful labors of those who unheralded in public those who are relatively unknown who minister in relative silence who do not gain public applause or plaudits there are no plinths erected by following me as far as I know and you are in the world of them the same ball about how many days massacre in Paris back in the 1500s not nor any good reason to remember about following you is it but there are no plants to Thaddeus as far as I know anywhere in the world today is a reminder to us today that the Kingdom of God is just as valuable for those who are preachers light Simon Peter and for those who are deacons on those who clean the pews and those who make the pot lucks and those who make sure that he things working on a weekly basis in the church God has space for everybody in his kingdom and some other public and some a private Some are applauded on some of heralded but they are all necessary for the Kingdom of God We also see in this the civil discussion about these 12 disciples that Jesus calls Judas Iscariot my version says and Judas Iscariot who betrayed him that is an emphasis for mock mock Nonsense know that and he also managed to call Judas Iscariot the man who betrayed Jesus Christ on the night that Judas betrayed Jesus Jesus brought in the New Covenant we learn from this passage here the disciples are not perfect. In fact Judas Iscariot Rusian John 6 Jesus says into one of you is a loss John 65 that Jesus knew from day one that Judas Iscariot It was experiencing demonic harassment in fact demonic control and yet Jesus still cold this demonized man to be his and his disciple in fact he was the treasurer of the disciples you might say that even a conference Treasurer might experience demonic possession I'm not suggesting we do have conference treasures like that but the point is that even a conference Treasurer might experience demonization and Jesus still sees a role for that individual the lesson here is that Jesus doesn't just see who we are today he sees who we may be tomorrow he doesn't condemn us for what we are the baggage we bring we all bring baggage he doesn't repeat condemn us for the personal mosaic of sin the configuration of sin in our lives as it when he met in the parlance can mock to sin some my sins are forgiven me as we discussed last week there's nothing more distinctive about a person than the configuration of sin within their lives Jesus does not condemn us for our past he sees what we may become by the grace of God and if you look through the 12 gospels notice this Jesus never fired one of his disciples. Never fired them. They would argue about who was the greatest They failed to cast out demons he chided them for their lack of faith the lack of belief Oh yes these were not perfect men but nowhere did Jesus ever fire disciple he always worked with His disciples He always hopes that tomorrow would be better than stay and if you're a parent you understand this do you not your children may mess up today but you hope that tomorrow things will be better and you don't discard your children and then them out of what that performance is they because you love them and you pray that tomorrow will be a better day and that's how Jesus treats his disciples he does not fire his soul is faulty faith was disciples he works with them and he grows them and he allows him to go through good and bad experiences bad because he's wanting to shape us and to grow since the image of Jesus Christ we'd pray that he will bring its completion the good work that is necessary in us and you bring that good work to completion by the day of Jesus Christ as Paul says the church of Philip I am and so this is a deadly authority of Jesus it is also a delegate authority Jesus delegate his off already to his disciples and by extension he delegates out of 30 to us today where my favorite stories in the Bible is where Jacob this old old man is frail old man he is he brought his brought in with his walking frame in front of Pharaoh the President Trump of his era remember the story in The Book of Genesis and it says that Jacob a man from a despised ethnic group with a despised profession because the Egyptians hated shepherds says that Jacob blessed Sarah. And you can memorize stories are the Jacob blessed fairy see it doesn't matter what ethnic background you have doesn't matter what job you may have we operate in live under the authority of the God of Heaven of the creator of the universe we are his representatives in society we are his his champions in the disputes of the world we are called to represent him no matter how the world may look down on who we are will rob backgrounder on job whatever it may be we have been given under 30 by Jesus Christ and Jesus is asking us to use out of our team his name to be faithfully representing him to inject the presence of Jesus into the conversations we go through on a daily basis tragically as Christians we live in 2 worlds do we not we have what we do on Sabba what we do in the rest of the week and what we do in Sabbath we can believe whatever you want within the confines of the 4 walls of the church but the moment you leave church it seems that we walk into a secular world and we have to abide by the principles of a secular world and whatever our calling or profession in life may happen to be and people say How can I be a Christian as a software programmer How can I be a Christian as a an engineer how can I be a Christian as a teacher will react cold not just to be live according to secular principles Sunday through Friday in biblical principles on Sabbath but we are called to bring the principles of the Kingdom of God and set them diffuse our daily lives so people know that we have spent time with Jesus Christ what a challenge is think about how we do that in practice in our lives being a Christian in public life doesn't just mean being honest with your tax returns it means being the very presence of Jesus in your workplace looking out for the marginalized lifting up those who are hungry and hurting and poor and thirsty and being a speaker at being a champion for those who cannot speak up for themselves lifting people and lifting human burdens that is what Jesus did that is what he called us to do as well so Jesus gives us a delegates of 30 and no way in the Gospels or in the New Testament to Jesus call that 40 back himself. No Why does he rescind the call to be his representatives to a full and dying planet without a battle 30 extends today it extends to each one of us in our role and I whatever God has places within his vineyard but then we come to the fact that this is a disputed of 30 and we come here to mock up to 3 and verse. The end of Versed 19 says that Jesus went home and the crowd came together again so they could not even eat when his family heard it they went out to restrain him for people were saying he's going out of his mind so the scene here is that Jesus comes home to Capernaum and we believe it's Capernaum and he comes to his home and there's a crowd gathered around it so this such a big crowd that the county even eat when his family heard it they come out to strain him they say Jesus something's going wrong here you're going crazy Jesus we like you we want to follow you but your teachings they might cause offense they might cause a possibilty of rejection and so in the minds of the family of Jesus it was better to control him to repackage him to Section him we might say in England to put him in a mental health institution lock him away somewhere so that we can repackage him into a Jesus that the world will accept and will not arise the anger of the authorities in our world we want an anodyne Jesus an empty Jesus a powerless Jesus. That's how this passage starts and if you drop down to verse $31.00 you have another story that says exactly the same thing so then is for mother and his brothers came and standing outside they said to him and told him so the family here he sitting in the house a crowd was sitting around him so he's in a house there is his family and there are there's a crowd just the same as vs 1020 and they said to him Your mother and your brothers and sisters are outside asking for you and Jesus replied Who are my mother my brothers and looking at those around him he said here are my mother and here are my brothers whoever does the will of God is my brother my sister and my mother now this is what theologians call a sandwich can. Instruction and what do I mean by that well not what Mark does repeatedly through the gospel and I did challenge use you want to mean through the soft new look through the Gospel of Mark sorry Mark and you will see this this construction of him repeatedly now this here's a sandwich Yes as you will recognize this is a sandwich but if I were to say to you would you like this sandwich before you say yes you want to know not whether there's bread on the outside but what you want to know what's on the inside you see a sandwich is defined not by the bread but by what's on the inside if I would say to you this is a p.b. and j. say oh thank you very much as a paper to shake his head you would like it Paper Number All right so. Most school aged kids is a p.b. and j. s. thank you very much that's my favorite food now my favorite sandwich is in here and this is this is the food of the gods you might say it has bread on the outside which is that adds kind of structure to it and add strength to it on the inside I have wrought onion and I have Marmite. It's absolutely delicious and the ending like that Andy Andy is possibly thank divided being from Australia. You need to be for England to be a full sanctification but but all season Brits like Marmite Marmite is like black Margery in it's more than was salty things levitates is made out of made out of east and Tate types are delicious and at the end of a meal my wife says Well would you like a cookie or some no no no nothing I don't like take a don't like cookie I really don't like chocolate if you give me a chocolate cookie then it's an act of self-denial to force it down it's an act of the will to force it through my lips and so what I really have a weakness for is bread a slice of bread with mom I found it in a slice of roll running on it is absolutely delicious it's a sign of a mature palate in case you're wondering. The point why my talking about this though. Is that versus 1020 you have a scene where Jesus is a home with his family around him thinking he's going crazy and he's surrounded by a crowd and then in verse 31 through 35 you have exactly the same scene again all the key components of that these are the 2 slices of the sandwich. That trying to control him they say that we have authority over you Jesus we're going to lock you up we're going to tie you down we're going to take you way through reeducation we're going to commit you to a mental health institution we have authority over you Jesus that's the message of the pieces of bread. But. The real meaning is in the meat not literally which is p.b. and j. I think the real meaning is what's between the bread. I'm not swear we come to the story of bells above and Jesus. Says there in verse 22 in the scribes who come down from Jerusalem sides he has b.l.t. above them by the ruler of the demons he cast out demons and he called them to him and spoke to him in parables How can Satan cost out Satan if the Kingdom is divided against itself like America today that kingdom cannot stand and if a house is divided against itself that house will not be able to stand and if Satan has risen up against himself and is divided he cannot stand but his and has come but no one can enter a strong man's house and plunder his property without 1st tying up the strong man then indeed the house can be plundered the scribes are the opponents of Jesus there following him from g. from Jerusalem wherever he goes to accuse him no longer are they posing insinuating questions in the hot such as why does his father speak like this in Matsue but now their opposition is opens Jesus and they say he has saith will be also above and by the ruler of demons he has cost out demons they do not accuse Jesus of being you know an impostor nor do they denied the ability of Jesus to cost out demons rather they ascribe the source of the power of Jesus to Satan Robin to his heavenly Father them in this is judgment is proof that faith and disbelief are not dependent upon miracles 1 May see miracles and remain confirmed in stopping disbelief 1 May never see a miracle and remain am deeply rooted in a profound faith however whether one sees a miracle or here's the word of Jesus a decision must be made and that decision must be made by all of us today and those was watching online is Jesus coming from Satan or is Jesus coming from God and there are consequences so the odds that you give up fundamental question. Is Jesus from Satan or is Jesus from gold each and every one of us through life must make up basic decision that we must act upon the consequences of that decision if Jesus is indeed from God How do I respond with living faith or am I going to respond with willful stubborn obstinate disbelief Jesus responds them with simple logic if the work of Jesus is diametrically opposed to Satan How can Jesus be empowered by Satan if Jesus truly is empowered by Satan as the scribes are insinuating than Satan's kingdom cannot stand and the evidence of last 2000 years of human history would suggest that Satan is Kingdom is still standing today Jesus indeed when he talks about you know that you cannot enter a strong man's hands house and plunder his property without 1st trying a strong man then the house can be plundered with a mock up to one Jesus defeated a stake in the wilderness and because he defeated Satan the wilderness he can go through his ministry setting free the captives of Satan Jesus defeated sin on Calvary but he defeated Satan in the showdown in the wilderness in March up to Wong later again in Matthew's Gospel and so Jesus can go around setting people free from satanic oppression or possession or harassment because Jesus has 1st tied up Satan and Satan is helpless before Jesus Christ and somebody shoots him until that. And so Jesus plundering of Satan's Dominion is a sign that God's presence has broken into human life Jesus says in verse 28 Truly truly I say unto you now whenever you see in the gospels the expression Truly truly I say unto you This is what scholars call it a good no make statements g. and o. m. I see good news in the statement and what is a good no make statement when you see Truly truly I say to a very very I say unto you Jesus pulling back the curtain and he speaking is the judge of humanity the Judge of all mankind he's revealing to us what the judge is thinking about now if you go to court when you. You know what you'll judge things about them the matter when you like to know what makes the judge take would you like to know what your judge's priorities are you know many years ago my mother in law was sued. For a very for an unfair reason and the post uncertain have paid money to the judge and told my mother in law is a former Soviet republic my mother more was expected to be convicted par the judge because money exchanged hands the judge had an interest in money by God's grace on the morning of the case that person had a heart attack and died and we thank God for that you see it is important to know the hearts of the judge but God intervenes at times thankfully in that case a very direct way but in this case here Jesus speaking as the judge of mankind is his feet people will be forgiven for their sins and whatever blasphemies they also we say Amen we are all sinners but who have a blast for use against the Holy Spirit can never have forgiveness but is guilty of an eternal sinful they had said Jesus House an unclean spirit this is the sin against the Holy Spirit that we speak about otherwise known as the unforgivable sin it is a specific judgment this the unforgivable sin directly is the judgment that Jesus was motivated by Satan rather than by God but he was empowered by Satan robbing my God on natural reality rejecting that is the specific nature of young forgivable sin but more broadly. Anyone who puts through persistent rejection of the promptings of the Holy Spirit and I can no longer distinguish good from evil darkness from light and light from darkness is now beyond the possibility of repentance as I as I said it won't of those who call evil good and good evil who put darkness for light on light for darkness and Jesus did not warn the masses about young forgivable sin he warned the religious leaders of his time those who sat in synagogue every Sabbath those who were faithful in returning that tired as those who gave to Paul fund of the synagogue those who made the 3 on your pilgrimages to the temple of Jerusalem it is precisely to the outwardly religious the inwardly self-righteous that Jesus speaks those who are most susceptible to the young forgivable sin spiritual pride self-righteousness in a sense of one's own worthiness and lack of sinfulness this all closed the hearts of the promptings of the Spirit and if we are not repenting of us ans may lead us off to years of willful rejection from the promptings of the spirit to the place where we no longer hear the voice of the Spirit now lives on the now we haven't committed the unforgivable sin is no longer sense on need for repentance our time is up here so what we say in conclusion in this chapter Well so far as we are making his journey through Mark's Gospel we are presented with the unique and God given authority of Jesus Christ who is the Son of God and the son of mine has authority over the demons has authority over disease he has authority over the disciples but beyond that his authority is a deadly authority is deadly for Jesus because Jesus exercises authority on our behalf none of that is going to be deadly for him you know perhaps another powerful verse in the Word of God is in Genesis chapter 2 where the Lord God made man in Adam out of the dust of the ground. So the Lord God formed man from the dust of the ground and breathed into his nostrils the breath of life and in so doing he gave himself the kiss of death. Jesus exercises his authority in a way that is deadly to himself his authority is the delegates authority Jesus calls disciples to himself to be with him in order that he might send them out to represent him we are today bear about delegates to 40 we're not just many members of village that government is church whichever church we happen to be this morning we are the delegated disciples of Jesus Christ we are his representatives and a fallen world he is personally sending us out beyond these 4 walls at the end of the service to represent him in a dying world I His authority is disputed for Jesus in this passage here on throughout history is the dividing figure of human history you may say that Jesus is not important but you were born on a certain birth date were you not your birthday is calculated from the time of Jesus is it not I was born in 1972 that means I was born my hands and 100 seems 2 years awful time Jesus my 1st Social Security check will come on a certain date from the time of Jesus my wedding was a certain date from the time of Jesus my birthdays or a certain date from the time of Jesus every paycheck is calculated on the month of the year from the time of Jesus every important event in my life is calculated in reference to Jesus Christ and we say he's not important he is the dividing figure of human history it's a disputed of 40 because we must come home decision even today when does Jesus come from if he truly is from God and He does so far in his Gospel was only God can do then how do we respond. In faith or willful rejection in this chapter here disciples have 3 characteristics Firstly when he called the disciples of them we have to he says and he pointed 12 Hermia and them to puzzles Firstly to be with him so disciples spend time with Jesus how is your prayer life these days. How is your reading of the Word of God. This delightful sandwich here on a moment it does me no good sitting on the pew here in the pulpit doesn't actually need to chew into it I need to turn it over my mouth I need to turn it over a piece of lead and swallow it by faith trusting that will always gave me was not poison that was good for me I need to let it do what only it can do in my life Jesus is calling us to spend time with him I saw 1st responsibility is as follows If you're not spending time with him the made that day to day when you start to spend time with Jesus we want his stories and ask yourself what is what is Jesus saying to me here was Jesus asking me in this text is there a promise for me in this text I can build today a poem is there a challenge in this text with Jesus called me to change my life spend time with Jesus the 2nd thing the disciples is that he says he sent the mouse proclaim the message Jesus doesn't just call us to cheer on the world with the energy that the world gives us he expects us to win labor for him to become laborers in the Gospel commission he's asking us to share with the world what Jesus means for us he's not asking us to be an active Christians to be a reason in the reserve forces when he's calling us to be on the front lines for him wherever he calls us to live and thirdly disciples of Jesus are obedient to God through the old Will. We step out in faith we have your farty to cost out demons we have to spend time in the Word of God and we are the ambassadors for Jesus Christ today and it is to following Jesus today that we are abducted into the family of God We not only co neighbors with Jesus and humanity salvation but we are co as of this of the gifts of salvation we have the promise that one day we will live in a world where there are no more paralytics electros no more diseased individuals or people coming to church with hands to hide the shameful fare what people may say about them we have the promise that one day all things will be made new again that every tear will be wiped away the death and disease and suffering will be no more than the sea will give up the data to read Revelation 21 we have the promise that there is a new happens a new earth coming and we are citizens of that Kingdom we're not just citizens of United States of America Paul says Our citizenship is in heaven above from where we are expecting our Savior the Lord Jesus Christ and they that they come soon but all things we make you again and the disciples of Jesus will no longer need to live in a world of sin but will live in a world of joy and peace and love until that day comes be faithful to him spend time with Jesus represent Jesus in the world in the name of Jesus conquer the force and be true to Jesus and there it is. 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