Welcome to Week 2 of the Higher Hope Church 2018 New Testament Reading Plan! If you haven’t already, go pick up your 5x5x5 Reading Plan and join our private Facebook group for daily interaction and discussion. In today’s post, I will share a brief recap of chapters 6-10 from the Gospel of Mark, but I would love to hear how the Lord spoke to you in this week’s readings! Please leave a comment below or in the Facebook group!
The chapter opens with Jesus returning to His hometown where he receives a less than warm welcome. He cannot perform many healings due to their unbelief. He commissions and sends out the Twelve, granting them the authority to heal in His name. He feeds the 5,000 and walks on water. Yet, the disciples still do not see Jesus as the Messiah. We contrast this to our chapters from last week where the evil spirits immediately knew Him as the “Holy One of God.”
The Pharisees question Jesus about ritual washing. It’s important to understand that they were not evaluating Jesus and His ministry based on the tenets of God’s Word (the Old Testament) but rather on their religious traditions (their interpretation of God’s Word). The chapter closes with two healings – one of a Gentile woman’s request to heal her daughter and one of a man who was deaf and mute.
Jesus shows compassion on the people again by feeding the multitude. The Pharisees came out after asking Jesus for a sign from heaven (a sign from the sky). They had already made up their minds about Jesus and were not going to be swayed no matter what. Jesus warned his disciples that a little bit of yeast (sin) can corrupt the whole loaf. He then heals a man of blindness, but gradually. Peter then declares that Jesus is the Christ and Jesus warns them not to tell anyone about Him. He then announces that He must be rejected and killed and rise again.
Jesus selects a small group of the apostles to join Him on the mountain where he is transfigured. He heals a boy with an unclean spirit that the disciples were unable to cast out. Jesus again reminds the disciples of his mission and foretells of his impending death and resurrection. He explains to them what true greatness in the Kingdom of God means. He later describes sin and its consequences.
Jesus teaches on divorce, blesses the children, and explains how the rich can get into Heaven. Jesus predicts His death again, discusses “greatness” in the Kingdom of God, and heals the blind Bartimeus.
Questions for Reflection
- Why was Jesus rejected in His hometown in Mark 6?
- Why do you think Jesus sent the Twelve with basically only the clothes on their backs in Mark 6?
- Describe what Jesus was trying to tell the Pharisees about tradition and ritual in Mark 7.
- Why do you think Jesus performed the healing of the blind man in two stages in Mark 8?
- Describe what you think Jesus means by true greatness in God’s Kingdom in Mark 9 and 10.
- What is ONE THING you can take from the readings this week and apply it to your life?
Looking forward to continuing our reading! Next week we dive into chapters 11-15!