05 March 2018- Mark 3:13-35
Jesus appointed his top team to be with Him in order to train and entrust them with the dynamite of the Good News, to preach it and to authorize them to drive out demons. He called them each by name and set them apart to be the stewards who began ushering His kingdom. If Jesus has called you by name what is something that He is bringing to your attention today as He is training you to be His disciple? What is something new you have learn about our Chief Disciple-Maker so far in Mark’s Gospel?
04 March 2018- Harden hearts Mark 2:18-3:12
The good news of Jesus is liberating and transforming. He invited even those who found Him threatening to contemplate freedom from their legalistic bondage. For the Pharisees, it was all about the rules rather than life for which the rules were made to care for. They watched Him closely so they might find a fault and accuse Him. Jesus watches them and grieves… because of hardened hearts. If Jesus was to look around your community of faith today what would be his evaluation? Will it be marked by the freedom in the Spirit or the life sapping religious rules?
03 March 2018 – Spot check Mark 2:1-17
The Good News about Jesus continues to unfold. It is the first time in Mark where Jesus declares Himself to be the Son of Man with the power on earth to forgive sins. Spontaneity marks the events in these verses and helps expose the heart of Jesus’ mission versus the narrowed yet strayed mind-set of the teachers of the Law. Jesus communicated the presence and the power of God in forgiving sins, healing and eating with a tax collector, while they argued than none of these things can happen according to their understanding of God, tradition and rituals. Unfortunately we are not exempt from a similar mind-set! Therefore, tuning our hearts to the presence and power of the resurrected Christ is paramount, even more so now that we have the Holy Spirit to help and enable us to do that. This is a good time for a spot check on your heart…
02 March 2018 Opportunities – Mark 1:21-45
Embracing the Good News of Jesus cannot be separated from being His disciple. To be a disciple is to be an apprentice, to follow the instructions and the practices of the master. After being called to be Jesus’ apprentices the four fishermen get the first taste of who has called them what it means to follow Him, even more so in their own town. Jesus taught/preached with authority, and the significance of His Words was demonstrated and authenticated by powerful miracles. So far Jesus has been announced by John the Baptist, affirmed by Father God and acknowledged by the devil. Yet, in the midst of this popularity Jesus seeks to not be distracted but looks at the next opportunity to share the good news? If snow and cold weather are our distraction today what is our next opportunity to share the good news in word and action with someone?
01 March 2018 – Good News – Mark 1:1-20
The beginning of the gospel is intense and made up of different characters. Have a look on these characters especially at their conduct, interaction and concerns and make some notes.
What is one thing that God has brought into my attention and invites me to believe about Him (Father, Son, Holy Spirit) today?
Why March Madness?
- Encouragement to commit to read and Scripture together.
- Dig afresh – no assumptions or pre-set ideas as we read through the Gospel of Mark.
- Make time, expect to meet with Jesus and pray for opportunities to talk about Him!
The gospel of Mark is a good place to start as it is an accessible book, it simply gives a clear presentation of the life and the ministry of Jesus which is simply good news. Mark is preparing his readers for something which is a new beginning, a new creation.
Michael Fallon suggests that “in calling it ʻgood newsʼ (gospel), Mark is throwing down the gauntlet to those who were taken in by Roman propaganda in which the word ʻgospelʼ stood for the benefits that came to people when they submitted to the rule of the divine Emperor. No, says Mark. To experience true peace we must look to and listen to Jesus. He can make this declaration because of everything that Jesus has said and done in Galilee up to that point. To understand what Peter means, we have to do what Peter did: we have to watch Jesus and listen to him, as he preaches and lives the good news”.