It's Day 8 and we're in Mark 8.
Where God Spoke To Me:
- Verse 36 - This is one of my life verses.
- Verses 23-25 - Why did the miracle come in phases? We don't know. It gives me comfort to know, though, that not all miracles happen the same way. Sometimes it's instantaneous and sometimes it's in phases.
- Verses 26, 30 - Jesus regularly tells people to not spread the word of the miracles He's done. Why? Two reasons: 1. He was trying to maintain a timetable for when things would happen as far as His crucifixion and didn't want to get ahead of that. 2. He knew that the interest that brought people out to see the miracles was generally a shallow faith that would be unlikely to bloom.
- Verse 34 - "deny himself" - This means that we have to be willing to put aside our desires and obey Christ's commands, believing that will take us to somewhere better.
- Verse 34 - "take up his cross" - This means that there will be sacrifice involved in this walk of faith.
- Verse 35 - "save, lose" - This means that when we cling to our hopes and desires, we end up losing out. When we lay those aside and run after Jesus' commands, we will find real life.
If you want to read the chapter online, here's a link.
If you have a question or comment, email me at firstname.lastname@example.org.
Your Questions and Comments:
- "We understand that they didn't learn anything from the feeding of the fish and loaves. They should have learned by that point that anything was possible with Jesus. However, we don't understand why their hearts were 'hardened.' Why would this harden their hearts. It seems to us that they would be lifted up and open????" - I'm not sure that the feeding of the 5,000 hardened their hearts. Mark 6:52 says they didn't understand because their hearts were hardened. I take that to mean something like: they weren't open to seeing what God was doing, they were just impressed with free food, they weren't genuinely seeking Christ as the Messiah but just there to see what all the hubbub was about. I think is similar to the reason why Jesus discouraged people from telling about the miracles He did - they were more interested in the "cool trick" aspect than truly seeking evidence that God was moving.
- "When the demons did not want to be sent into the abyss - 1. Why would Jesus grant them permission to flee into the pigs? Why wouldn't he want to send them to the abyss? 2. What happened to the demons when the swine died in the sea?" - 1. It seems as though sending them into the abyss would have been a permanent punishment for them, whereas the pigs was not. We do not know why Jesus did not choose to inflict the more harsh punishment on them. 2. Presumably they were released to go elsewhere.