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January 10, 2018

Please read today’s Scriptures and use the comment section on this page to share your insights from today’s reading. You can also just mention a verse that impacted you or post a question!

Read (and Hear) the Bible in One Year

Text: Genesis 30 – Genesis 31
Audio: Genesis 30 – Genesis 31

You can use the audio Bible as a guide to help “set the pace” as you read along.

Memory Verse of the Week

 And he asked them, “But who do you say that I am?”
Peter answered him, “You are the Christ.”
(Mark 8:29 ESV)

Mark 10 (ESV)

And he left there and went to the region of Judea and beyond the Jordan, and crowds gathered to him again. And again, as was his custom, he taught them.

And Pharisees came up and in order to test him asked, “Is it lawful for a man to divorce his wife?” He answered them, “What did Moses command you?” They said, “Moses allowed a man to write a certificate of divorce and to send her away.”And Jesus said to them, “Because of your hardness of heart he wrote you this commandment. But from the beginning of creation, ‘God made them male and female.’ ‘Therefore a man shall leave his father and mother and hold fast to his wife, and the two shall become one flesh.’ So they are no longer two but one flesh. What therefore God has joined together, let not man separate.”

10 And in the house the disciples asked him again about this matter. 11 And he said to them, “Whoever divorces his wife and marries another commits adultery against her, 12 and if she divorces her husband and marries another, she commits adultery.”

13 And they were bringing children to him that he might touch them, and the disciples rebuked them. 14 But when Jesus saw it, he was indignant and said to them, “Let the children come to me; do not hinder them, for to such belongs the kingdom of God. 15 Truly, I say to you, whoever does not receive the kingdom of God like a child shall not enter it.” 16 And he took them in his arms and blessed them, laying his hands on them.

17 And as he was setting out on his journey, a man ran up and knelt before him and asked him, “Good Teacher, what must I do to inherit eternal life?” 18 And Jesus said to him, “Why do you call me good? No one is good except God alone. 19 You know the commandments: ‘Do not murder, Do not commit adultery, Do not steal, Do not bear false witness, Do not defraud, Honor your father and mother.’” 20 And he said to him, “Teacher, all these I have kept from my youth.” 21 And Jesus, looking at him, loved him, and said to him, “You lack one thing: go, sell all that you have and give to the poor, and you will have treasure in heaven; and come, follow me.” 22 Disheartened by the saying, he went away sorrowful, for he had great possessions.

23 And Jesus looked around and said to his disciples, “How difficult it will be for those who have wealth to enter the kingdom of God!” 24 And the disciples were amazed at his words. But Jesus said to them again, “Children, how difficult it is to enter the kingdom of God! 25 It is easier for a camel to go through the eye of a needle than for a rich person to enter the kingdom of God.” 26 And they were exceedingly astonished, and said to him, “Then who can be saved?” 27 Jesus looked at them and said, “With man it is impossible, but not with God. For all things are possible with God.” 28 Peter began to say to him, “See, we have left everything and followed you.” 29 Jesus said, “Truly, I say to you, there is no one who has left house or brothers or sisters or mother or father or children or lands, for my sake and for the gospel, 30 who will not receive a hundredfold now in this time, houses and brothers and sisters and mothers and children and lands, with persecutions, and in the age to come eternal life. 31 But many who are first will be last, and the last first.”

32 And they were on the road, going up to Jerusalem, and Jesus was walking ahead of them. And they were amazed, and those who followed were afraid. And taking the twelve again, he began to tell them what was to happen to him,33 saying, “See, we are going up to Jerusalem, and the Son of Man will be delivered over to the chief priests and the scribes, and they will condemn him to death and deliver him over to the Gentiles. 34 And they will mock him and spit on him, and flog him and kill him. And after three days he will rise.”

35 And James and John, the sons of Zebedee, came up to him and said to him, “Teacher, we want you to do for us whatever we ask of you.” 36 And he said to them, “What do you want me to do for you?” 37 And they said to him, “Grant us to sit, one at your right hand and one at your left, in your glory.” 38 Jesus said to them, “You do not know what you are asking. Are you able to drink the cup that I drink, or to be baptized with the baptism with which I am baptized?” 39 And they said to him, “We are able.” And Jesus said to them, “The cup that I drink you will drink, and with the baptism with which I am baptized, you will be baptized, 40 but to sit at my right hand or at my left is not mine to grant, but it is for those for whom it has been prepared.” 41 And when the ten heard it, they began to be indignant at James and John. 42 And Jesus called them to him and said to them, “You know that those who are considered rulers of the Gentiles lord it over them, and their great ones exercise authority over them. 43 But it shall not be so among you. But whoever would be great among you must be your servant, 44 and whoever would be first among you must be slave of all. 45 For even the Son of Man came not to be served but to serve, and to give his life as a ransom for many.”

46 And they came to Jericho. And as he was leaving Jericho with his disciples and a great crowd, Bartimaeus, a blind beggar, the son of Timaeus, was sitting by the roadside. 47 And when he heard that it was Jesus of Nazareth, he began to cry out and say, “Jesus, Son of David, have mercy on me!” 48 And many rebuked him, telling him to be silent. But he cried out all the more, “Son of David, have mercy on me!” 49 And Jesus stopped and said, “Call him.” And they called the blind man, saying to him, “Take heart. Get up; he is calling you.” 50 And throwing off his cloak, he sprang up and came to Jesus. 51 And Jesus said to him, “What do you want me to do for you?” And the blind man said to him, “Rabbi, let me recover my sight.”52 And Jesus said to him, “Go your way; your faith has made you well.” And immediately he recovered his sight and followed him on the way.

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Next: Mark 11

Back: Mark 9

This Post Has 13 Comments
  1. When we are born, we are literally helpless. Unless someone cares for us, we will die within hours of birth. If someone cares for us for six months or even a few years and decides to leave us on the side of the road, unless someone finds us and cares for us, we will die. 

    When Jesus says, "Let the children come to me; do not hinder them, for to such belongs the kingdom of God. 15 Truly, I say to you, whoever does not receive the kingdom of God like a child shall not enter it" (Mark 10:14-15), I see this as a picture of our desperate need for care, provision, protection . . . for everything.

    Complete dependence.

    Jesus uses this as the illustration of our posture before God. A baby can't do anything for the care they receive. They can't even say thank you with their words (the "thank you" comes when they stop crying and are content when they are fed and cleaned). 

    Do we appreciate what God has done for us? Do we stop fussing and crying because of all that Jesus provides us, His children? Do we say thank you with our actions and not just our words? 

    When the "young man" comes to Jesus and asks, "Good Teacher, what must I do to inherit eternal life?" (Mark 10:17), and Jesus asks him, "Why do you call me good? No one is good except God alone" (Mark 10:18), Jesus is not saying He is not God but rather, pointing out to the young man that he doesn't recognize Jesus's deity, His Lordship or His authority. A good teacher is not the God in the flesh. When Jesus tells him, “You lack one thing", it is this.

    This young man was rich. He could buy whatever he wanted. But Jesus shows him that eternal life can't be bought with wealth, it's only through following Jesus Christ, who is way more than just a "good teacher." When the young man realized the cost of following Jesus, he walked away. 

    Imagine having enough money to buy whatever you wanted except for one thing. Now imagine this "one thing" would cost you everything you had. Would you buy it? Would you give up your ability to buy anything else ever again so this "one thing" was yours?

    If you wanted it badly enough, you would. But this young man wanted it all. He wanted to "have his cake and eat it too." If Jesus told him to sell half of all he had and he would have treasure in heaven, he would have. If Jesus told him to sell most of all he had, he would have since you could take what little you have left and make more (for yourself) with it. But to give up everything you have means you are completely dependent on others (and in this case, since you would be following Jesus), you would be completely dependent on Him – just like a child. 

    Who would become a beggar for Jesus? 

    This goes back to the previous chapter when Jesus says in Mark 9:43-48, if your hand, foot or eye causes you to sin, cut it out (or off). These things are essential to our lives and losing one or all of them would drastically change our lives. This young man's wealth was as important to him as his hand, foot and eye and because he wasn't willing to cut it off, the narrow gate to the kingdom of God was closed to him.

    Interesting that this young man believed he kept all the commandments since he was young. Jesus says, “You know the commandments: ‘Do not murder, Do not commit adultery, Do not steal, Do not bear false witness, Do not defraud, Honor your father and mother” (Mark 10:19) and at this point, the young man was feeling pretty good. But when Jesus says, "go, sell all that you have and give to the poor, and you will have treasure in heaven; and come, follow me" (Mark 10:21) this proves the young man didn't even keep the first commandment, "You shall have no other gods before me" (Exodus 20:3). 

    Jesus is God, not a "Good Teacher" and the young man left Jesus to worship his god. 

    1. Wow, Scott. That was powerful. I'm so thankful to God I get to read this first thing today.

      Your description of what the young man might've done if Jesus had only asked him to give up SOME of his wealth? That really convicted me. Do I have the faith to lay everything down to follow Jesus? What a piercing question.

  2. Jesus blows my mind every single day!

    Mark 10:27 is something I remind myself of very frequently. Doing this alleviates my fear and anxiety – the burden is gone. I have never felt so safe, secure, cared for, and loved, since I let Jesus all the way in. I thank Him constantly, for every little thing, and I marvel at how he loves me, even though I don't deserve these blessings. 

    1. Thanks for sharing this testimony, Brynne! 

      "Do not be conformed to this world, but be transformed by the renewal of your mind, that by testing you may discern what is the will of God, what is good and acceptable and perfect" (Romans 12:2).

      We could paraphrase this… Be transformed by the blowing of our minds. 🙂

       

    2. When I tell people who struggle with anxiety and fear that Jesus set me free completely, this is what I mean, Brynne! I'm so glad you get it, too.

      God's sovereignty + His great love for me = Peace. 

  3. Mark 10:15. I am a little child. I can't do anything without Jesus help. Sometimes I don't like this helpless feeling and I feel that 'I' should be doing something to run my life. But then I am reminded that Jesus wants to run my life, I am to but submit to His desires.

    1. I'm the same way, Charlene. How wonderful God is to not leave us alone on the side of the road to fend for ourselves, but to take us in and provide for all our needs. 

  4. No time to write today, so I'll just share this question I'm left with today after watching a docudrama about Martin Luther last night and then reading Mark 10 this morning:

    Which part of the crowd am I in? As the gate narrows, will I lay down whatever is keeping me from entering in and following Jesus?  

     

  5. In the middle of Jesus' teaching on divorce and remarriage is something important that we can easily miss. Notice that Jesus regards Genesis as history, factual. He quotes from it as truth, not as an allegory or story meant to amuse the kids, or that contains some deeper level of meaning. It was the primary basis for his argument about marriage. It is truth by which we are to live. In today's time, it is all too common to dismiss Genesis as a 'myth' because man has a high regard for science and a low regard for the authority of God's word. When science seems to contradict God's word, our default is not to see where we have made a mistake in science but to see where God's word is 'broken', and devise a way to twist scripture to 'align' with man's error-prone science as if it is a god.

    Sad to say that this isn't anything new. Even in the days of Origen, an early church father of the 3rd century, claimed that the Bible's true meaning could be found only by reading it allegorically. Saint Augustine taught that the Biblical text should not be interpreted literally if it contradicts what we know from science and our 'God-given reason'.

    If I make the teaching of Genesis a myth, where then is the origin of sin?
    * Where do we have the beginning of redemption if not in Genesis 3?
    * Where do we have the consequence of sin, death?
    * Why would the early believers, such as Paul, regard the teaching of Genesis as the basis for sin and death?
    * Why would Jesus use a fairy tale to argue for marriage? 
    * Notice that the Pharisees accept his reply, indicating that they also accept Genesis as history.

    The answer is that the Bible itself treats Genesis as history. We can trust what God says in Genesis, even when science presents 'facts' that seems to contradict its teaching.

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