Mark 7–8: Loss & Gain

Read the Bible in 2011 ◊ Week 14: Saturday

And He gave them orders not to tell anyone; but the more He ordered them, the more widely they continued to proclaim it. They were utterly astonished, saying, “He has done all things well; He makes even the deaf to hear and the mute to speak.”
Mark 7:36–37

In Saturday’s Bible reading of Mark 7–8, Jesus travels into region of Tyre and then back to the area surrounding the Sea of Galilee. The Pharisees are still attempting to trap Him, and the disciples continue to be obtuse in their understanding with the startling exception of Peter’s confession that Jesus is the Christ.

Jesus talks about His death and resurrection, and Peter’s reaction is to rebuke Him—it’s incredible that Peter had the nerve to do this—and Jesus replies to these words by commanding Satan to get behind Him. You have to wonder what went through Peter’s mind when he heard that.

Jesus tells Peter he is setting his mind on man’s interests rather than God’s; He summons the crowd with his disciples and says:

And He summoned the crowd with His disciples, and said to them, “If anyone wishes to come after Me, he must deny himself, and take up his cross and follow Me. For whoever wishes to save his life will lose it, but whoever loses his life for My sake and the gospel’s will save it. For what does it profit a man to gain the whole world, and forfeit his soul? For what will a man give in exchange for his soul? For whoever is ashamed of Me and My words in this adulterous and sinful generation, the Son of Man will also be ashamed of him when He comes in the glory of His Father with the holy angels.”
Mark 8:34–38

That’s such a far cry from the usual concept of the Christian life in many places today. There are clear choices given by Jesus in these words. Choices we each must make.

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Isaiah 42 Photograph: ChristianPhotos.net – Free High Resolution Photos for Christian Publications
Get Thee Behind Me, Satan (Rétire-toi, Satan), James Tissot: No known copyright restrictions

Original content: Copyright ©2011 Iwana Carpenter

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