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BIBLE STUDY on the Gospel of Mark
Theme: Four thousand fed; leaven explained; blind man of Bethsaida healed; death of Christ.
The eighth chapter is about the same length as the seventh chapter, and it continues the great theme of Mark, with the emphasis upon action. Jesus feeds the 4000 in the coasts of Decapolis, the Pharisees ask for a sign at Dalmanutha, the friends of a blind man ask Jesus to touch his eyes at Bethsaida, and Peter makes his confession of faith in Caesarea Philippi. What the Lord Jesus did was important then and it is VERY important for us today. Can the Lord Jesus REALLY save to the uttermost? Can He REALLY do what the Bible says He can do? YES!!! He is the Son of Almighty God, and He is the Servant of the Father, and He is GOD! And YES! He can do everything the Bible says He can do! Believe it my friend.
In this chapter, the Lord Jesus moves around quite a bit, and there were no good highways then. That land is not a very large land, but when a person had to walk, it is a fairly large tract. Jesus traveled by walking.
Some say that the feeding of the 4000, which opens this chapter, is a repetition of the feeding of the 5000, and they just about ignore it. This causes some to say that the feeding of the 4000 is the neglected miracle of Jesus. Critics in their usual way, seek to eliminate the Bible of anything supernatural. They claim this miracle was included after the feeding of the 5000 to strengthen the apostles’ claim that Jesus was a miracle worker. This is ridiculous, for IF this were true, the second miracle would be much greater than the first one . . . instead of 4000, it would be closer t0 10,000. Because when men make up stories, they exaggerate; but here it is restricted. What utter nonsense!
The TWO miracles of feeding the multitudes are very similar in several ways. He feeds the thousands, one time it is 5000 and the next time it is 4000 . . . BUT . . . there are seven ways that the two are not the same:
#1. The 5000 were Jews (Jn.6:14-15), the 4000 were probably Gentiles (Mk.7:31).
#2. In the first miracle, the multitude had been with the Lord one day (Mat.14:15; Mk.6:35); in the second miracle it had been three days (Mat.15:32; Mk.8:2).
#3. On the first occasion the disciples were told to "go and see" (Mk.6:38) what supplies were available, while upon the other they were ready with the information before they were asked (Mat.15:34).
#4. When the five thousand were fed there were five loaves and two fishes (Mat.14:17), while for the four thousand there were seven loaves and a few fishes (Mk.8:5).
#5. The first time, which was near the Passover, the multitude was told to sit in companies "upon the green grass," (Mat.14:19) while the second time, later in the year when the green of the Near East would be burnt by the oriental sun, they were instructed to sit "on the ground" (Mk.8:6).
#6. In the first instance our Lord is said to have "blessed... the loaves," (Mk.8:6), while on the second occasion He is said to have given thanks, first for the loaves, and later to have "blessed" the fish (Mat.14:19).
#7. After the five thousand were fed twelve baskets of fragments remained (Mat.14:20), but when the four thousand were satisfied there were seven baskets left over (Mk.8:8)
It is quite clear that the number that was fed was different in each instance.
As you see, there is a sharp contrast between the two miracles when Jesus fed the multitudes. In the feeding of the 5000, it was at the end of the first day. Jesus had been teaching them, but according to John, He followed the feeding of the five thousand with the discourse of the Bread of Life. This important sermon was sort of an after-dinner speech. In the feeding of the 4000, the multitude had been with Jesus for three days listening to His teaching. The physical food followed the teaching. In other words, the crowd had NOT come to eat but to hear the teaching of Jesus.
I think church dinners are nice . . . BUT, I have seen people come JUST for the dinners, showing up AFTER the sermon. Are churches using physical food just to get the crowd? If so, that is WRONG! Do you think God is pleased with these ‘dinners only’ crowds? Do you think He will bless these people?
This chapter begins: "in those days" which places this incident during the time the Lord Jesus was in the Decapolis. The multitude evidently had followed Jesus into a desert place which was convenient for teaching but not readily accessible to supplies. Great multitudes are following Him now.
Feeding the Four Thousand (Mark 8:1-9)
Mark 8:1 In those days the multitude being very great, and having nothing to eat, Jesus called his disciples unto him, and saith unto them, (KJV)
In those days . . . one version reads, on that day . . . as if it was on the same day that the deaf man was healed (Mk.7:32-37); and so it might be, and on the third day from Christ's coming into those parts; and so is correctly expressed, "in those days" (Mk.7:31), when compared with the following verse:
The multitude being very great . . . speaking of the number of men that ate, when the following miracle was done were about 4000 (Mk.8:9). One version adds, "again", speaking of the former miracle of the 5000, who were fed with five loaves, and two fishes (Mk.6:44).
And having nothing to eat . . . IF the people had brought any food with them, after 3 days, it would probably be gone, and since they were in a desert, there was nothing to be had, nor bought.
Jesus called his disciples to him, and saith unto them . . . Mat.15:32.
Mark 8:2 I have compassion on the multitude, because they have now been with me three days, and have nothing to eat: (KJV)
I have compassion on the multitude . . . the Lord Jesus was a very compassionate Saviour, of both the bodies and souls of men. He had compassion on the souls of this multitude, and so had been teaching them sound doctrine and He had compassion on the bodies of many of them, and had healed them of their diseases; and His Heart went out to them all;
Because they have now been with me three days, and have nothing to eat . . . for if they had brought any food with them, it was all gone by now, and here in a wilderness, there was nothing to be had, there were no houses to go into, and no provisions to be bought. These people had been two nights and three days with Jesus; which showed their great affection and zeal of these people, and a close attachment to Christ. They exposed themselves to all these hardships, which they seemed to bear with great patience. OH! If people today would be like that. They rally at sports events like idiots, but would they ever consider doing what these people did? Absolutely NOT! Maybe someday soon it will change!
Mark 8:3 And if I send them away fasting to their own houses, they will faint by the way: for divers of them came from far. (KJV)
And if I send them away fasting to their own houses, they will faint by the way: for divers of them came from far . . . . if He were to send them home, their strength will be exhausted from lack of nourishment. It is possible that some had followed him from the coasts of Tyre and Sidon, from where He was last, and others from all parts of Decapolis.
Mark 8:4 And his disciples answered him, From whence can a man satisfy these men with bread here in the wilderness? (KJV)
And his disciples answered him, from whence can a man satisfy these men with bread here in the wilderness? . . . it seems that they had already forgotten the recent miracle of feeding 5000 with five loaves and two fishes, for they now had a lesser number, and more provisions. The former miracle of feeding 5000 men, besides women and children, with five loaves and two fishes, must never have entered the minds of the apostles, because of their reply, from whence can a man satisfy these men with bread here in the wilderness?
Mark 8:5 And he asked them, How many loaves have ye? And they said, Seven. (KJV)
And he asked them, How many loaves have ye? And they said, Seven . . . it was important in this case, as in the former, that the exact number of the loaves should be brought out. Thus also does the clarity of the two miracles appear. (Mat.15:34). Matthew adds, "and a few little fishes", which are here afterwards mentioned.
Mark 8:6 And he commanded the people to sit down on the ground: and he took the seven loaves, and gave thanks, and brake, and gave to his disciples to set before them; and they did set them before the people. (KJV)
Verses 1-6 . . . there is something very interesting here. It seems as though the apostles had forgotten about His feeding of the 5000. What about OUR memories concerning the goodness of God? I'm afraid that many of us have the same kind of memory lapse. God does something wonderful for us, and we forget it by the next time He blesses us.
Since they had made an inventory of the crowd, and they knew how many loaves there were, maybe they thought that Jesus would repeat the miracle of the 5000. This time there were more loaves for fewer people . . . BUT . . . "What are these among so many?" And who was it that had the loaves this time? We are not told.
In this case of the 4000, they sat on the bare ground, while at the feeding of the 5000 they had been told to sit on the grass. How many fish were there? Mark simply says "a few small fishes" (verse 7). Does the number really matter? NO! The number is unimportant. When God is in it, there is always a surplus. Whether He feeds 5000 or 4000, He does NOT just give them a snack; He gives them a full meal.
Something else we should consider: if we add just one woman and one child for each of the men, the actual number of people who were fed were about 12,000.
Mark 8:7 And they had a few small fishes: and he blessed, and commanded to set them also before them. (KJV)
And they had a few small fishes . . . these fish were also brought to Jesus.
And he blessed, and commanded to set them also before them . . . it seems here that the fishes were blessed, and broken, and distributed separately, after the blessing, breaking, and distribution of the bread. According to Matthew they were both blessed, and brake, and distributed together, as it is highly reasonable to suppose they were both eaten together (Mat.15:36). And gave thanks (verse 6) . . . to God for the provisions, although it was so small, teaching us to do so likewise, and to be thankful for, and content with our portion, be it more or less. We should be grateful to God for our daily food, and we should render unto Him well deserved and proper thanksgiving. Most people do NOT give thanks before they eat. They are like hogs at a trough. Do YOU give thanks before you eat? If not . . . why not?
Mark 8:8 So they did eat, and were filled: and they took up of the broken meat that was left seven baskets. (KJV)
So they did eat, and were filled . . . Christ and His apostles, and the whole multitude . . . they not only had some, but they ALL had enough, a full meal. It was surprising that what they had could be so divided, that everyone would have not just a bit; but that they should all be satisfied to the full. Amazing!
And they took up of the broken meat that was left seven baskets . . . as many baskets of leftovers, as there were loaves (Mat.15:37).
Can we learn anything from this? Absolutely! Do NOT waste food!
Mark 8:9 And they that had eaten were about four thousand: and he sent them away. (KJV)
And they that had eaten were about four thousand, and he sent them away . . . all the men, women and children, the Lord Jesus sent away with their tummies full!
Verses 1-9 . . . the account of this miracle is nearly identical with that given by Matthew.
In Dalmanutha, A Sign Demanded (Mark 8:10-12)
Mark 8:10 And straightway he entered into a ship with his disciples, and came into the parts of Dalmanutha. (KJV)
And straightway he entered into a ship, with his disciples . . . as soon as He had dismissed the multitude, He got on the boat with His apostles, for He was at the sea of Galilee, either at a place near it, or upon the shore of it (Mk.7:31).
And came into the parts of Dalmanutha . . . Dalmanutha is the unknown destination of Jesus on the shores of the Sea of Galilee, after He fed the 4000. It is sometimes believed to be in the vicinity of Magdala, the alleged home town of Mary Magdalene, since the parallel Passage in Matthew mentions Magdala (Mat.15:39).
Mark 8:11 And the Pharisees came forth, and began to question with him, seeking of him a sign from heaven, tempting him. (KJV)
And the Pharisees came forth, and began to question with him, seeking of him a sign from heaven, tempting him . . . Matthew indicates the Sadducees as participating in this conversation (Mat.16:1).
The Sadducees and Pharisees did not agree on many things, but they united here against Christ, to whom they bore a relentless hatred. They came NOT to be taught by Him, or learn anything from Him. What they wanted was to trap Him, and expose Him to the people. They were not content with the miracles He had done, and they ask Him to produce a sign from Heaven, since He claimed to come from there, and His being the Son of God, and supposedly the true Messiah. It seems what they wanted was a sign as the standing still of the sun and moon, in the times of Joshua (Josh.10:12-13); and as raining manna (Ps.78:24), in the times of Moses; or of the appearance of thunder and lightning at the giving of the law (Ex.19:16), the appearance of the rainbow (Gen.9:13).
What they wanted was some unusual and uncommon sights in the heavens, as proof Christ’s mission was from God. The Pharisees and Sadducees demanded a sign "from Heaven." They attempted to explain away Jesus' other miracles as sleight of hand, coincidence, or use of evil power, but they believed that only God could do a sign in the sky. This, they were sure, would be an accomplishment far beyond Jesus' power. Although the Lord Jesus could have very easily done what they wanted, He refused. He knew that even a miracle in the sky would not convince them He was the Messiah (Lk.16:31), because they had already decided NOT to believe in Him.
Mark 8:12 And he sighed deeply in his spirit, and saith, Why doth this generation seek after a sign? verily I say unto you, There shall no sign be given unto this generation. (KJV)
And he sighed deeply in his Spirit . . . in His human soul; revealing that He had one, and was subject to grief and sorrow, and all passions and infirmities of man, except sin. This deep down moan was because of the hardness of their hearts, their intense hatred and a strong desire to do harm, the deadly maliciousness of their minds, and insincerity of their intentions. They had NOT come to hear or view the Truth by their demand, instead they wanted desperately trap Him.
And saith, Why doth this generation seek after a sign? . . . when so many “signs” had already been shown among them, and they still refuse to believe.
Verily I say unto you, there shall no sign be given to this generation . . . Matthew adds, "but the sign of the Prophet Jonas" (Mat.12:40; 16:4). Our Lord had provided them with many signs (miracles), but they would NOT accept them. These determined enemies of Jesus were NOT going to accept Jonah as a sign.
Mark 8:13 And he left them, and entering into the ship again departed to the other side. (KJV)
And he left them . . . as a stubborn and hardened generation, with whom it was not worth while to waste His breath.
And entering into the ship again . . . which ship probably brought Him over, and waited for Him.
Departed to the other side . . . of the sea of Galilee, towards Bethsaida (Mk.8:22).
Warns Apostles about Leaven (Mark 8:14-21)
Mark 8:14 Now the disciples had forgotten to take bread, neither had they in the ship with them more than one loaf. (KJV)
Now the disciples had, forgotten to take bread . . . at Dalmanutha, or Magdala, where they were before they took shipping, as was their usual method.
Neither had they in the ship with them more than one loaf . . . for thirteen passengers. One version reads: "and they forgot to take bread with them, not indeed one loaf, and there was no bread with them in the ship" (Mat.16:5).
Mark 8:15 And he charged them, saying, Take heed, beware of the leaven of the Pharisees, and of the leaven of Herod. (KJV)
And he charged them . . . when they were in the ship, and had remembered that they did not bring any provisions with them.
Saying, Take heed, beware of the leaven of the Pharisees; and of the leaven of Herod . . .
in Matthew, instead of "the leaven of Herod", it is "the leaven of the Sadducees", which really is the same, because Herod and his court were Sadducees, or favored them. The Sadducees stuck close to Herod and his government, while the Pharisees had no good opinion of them. Christ Jesus cautions against the doctrines of the Pharisees, which regarded the traditions of the elders, AND of the Sadducees, concerning the resurrection, AND of the Herodians, who thought Herod was the Messiah; AND against the unreasonable request and demand of them all to have a sign from Heaven, as proof of His own Messiahship (Mat.16:6).
Consider: the leaven of the Pharisees = arrogance, conceit, deception, double standards, pretense, hypocrisy, falseness, ceremonial procedures, ritualism, self-righteousness, bigotry, prejudice.
The leaven of Herod = doubt, disbelief, distrust, skepticism, corruption, dishonesty, immorality, lewdness, lust, materialism, covetousness, greed, sexual impurity, worldliness.
In the Scriptures leaven represents wrong or evil teaching; it NEVER means the Gospel. One of the deceptive things that is being taught today is that leaven represents the Gospel in the parable of the woman who hid leaven in three measures of meal (Mat.13:33). The meal symbolizes the Gospel, and the leaven, which symbolizes false and/or wrong teaching, was hidden in it. Leaven (false teaching) simply makes something taste good to the natural man. What is liberalism? It came into being by preachers in the pulpit trying to please the unsaved church members. And my dear friend, today we have a lot of preachers trying to please the congregation, even when they themselves are NOT saved. They are putting leaven in the meal! They are mingling wrong teaching with the Truth of the Holy Gospel. Leaven is EVIL that is put in meal to make it taste better! The Lord Jesus is warning them about the wrong teaching of the Pharisees and Herod.
Beware of the leaven: (Ex.12:20; Lev.2:1; Pro.19:27; Mat.13:33; 16:6-12; Mk.8:15-21; Lk.12:1; Gal.5:7-9; 1 Cor.5:6-8).
Mark 8:16 And they reasoned among themselves, saying, It is because we have no bread. (KJV)
And they reasoned among themselves, saying, It is because we have no bread . . . just a little while ago He was tried with the stubbornness of the Pharisees; now His patience is tried with the ignorance of His own disciples. There are nine questions that follow each other in rapid succession (Mk8:17-21), revealing just how deeply He was hurt at their lack of spiritual uncertainty, and I think still worse was their low thoughts of Him, as if He would utter such a solemn warning IF the subject were not important. "It is because we have no bread" . . . the Lord's was amazed that by this time they should have known better . . . with what took up His attention. (Mat.16:7)
Mark 8:17 And when Jesus knew it, he saith unto them, Why reason ye, because ye have no bread? perceive ye not yet, neither understand? have ye your heart yet hardened? (KJV)
And when Jesus knew it . . . as He did immediately, because of His omniscience; for just as He knew the thoughts and reasonings of the Scribes and Pharisees (Mat.9:4), so too did He know those of his own apostles. http://www.hisservants.org/is_jesus_god_h_s.htm
He saith unto them, Why reason ye because ye have no bread? . . . how can you possibly think that I cautioned you because of “no bread”? Do you think that I warned you because of your forgetfulness and negligence?
Perceive ye not yet, neither understand? . . . the meaning of the parabolic expressions, which He had used; or His power in providing food for them, and supporting a great number of persons with very little food, of which they had witnessed very recently.
Have ye your heart yet hardened? . . . very strong words to use of true-hearted disciples! After the second miracle of the loaves, their understandings should have been more enlightened, and their faith increased, and that their false notions, their anxieties, doubts and unbelief should have departed. (Mk.6:52).
Mark 8:18 Having eyes, see ye not? and having ears, hear ye not? and do ye not remember? (KJV)
Having eyes, see ye not? . . . maybe He means both the physical eyes and the eyes of their understanding. They had bodily eyes, and with them saw the miracles He had done, and yet it seems they took little notice of them; for the eyes of their understanding should have been enlightened by Christ, and yet they could not see things very clearly. What about us?
And having ears, hear ye not? . . . they had natural hearing, and but it seems they made little use of it; for they did not really pay attention to what Jesus was saying. Even though they had spiritual ears given them, yet they were very dull of understanding and taking in things. What about us?
And do ye not remember? . . . the interpretation of parables He had given before (Mk.4), and the miracles of the loaves, performed so recently.
Mark 8:19 When I brake the five loaves among five thousand, how many baskets full of fragments took ye up? They say unto him, Twelve. (KJV)
When I brake the five loaves among five thousand, how many baskets full of fragments took ye up? . . . do you not remember? Have you forgotten what was done so recently? Surely not.
They say unto him, twelve . . . their memories were refreshed, and they remember the exact number of the baskets of left-overs that were taken up, which was more than double the number of the loaves, the multitude were fed with.
Mark 8:20 And when the seven among four thousand, how many baskets full of fragments took ye up? And they said, Seven. (KJV)
And when the seven among four thousand, how many baskets full of fragments took ye up? . . . when seven loaves were broken among four thousand men, surely you must remember that, it being so recent an action, but just done, as it were:
And they said, seven . . . this could not have slipped their memories; although they had been reasoning among themselves because of their lack of provisions, just as if these miracles had never been done.
Mark 8:21 And he said unto them, How is it that ye do not understand? (KJV)
And he said unto them . . . since they so well remembered the miracles He had done, and the conditions of them, for this claims great absence of both understanding and faith, and shows great foolishness, ignorance, and unbelief, to give such a sense of my words, and to be anxiously concerned on the score of your provisions.
How is it that ye do not understand? . . . Mark does not tell us, neither does Matthew, if the apostles finally understood or not; but he takes it for granted that his readers would understand it.
Seven Reasons the Bible is NOT Understood
#1. Man’s reasoning, which brings on doubt and unbelief (Mk.8:17).
#2. Lack of discernment, implying dullness (Mk.8:17).
#3. Ignorance, indicating lack of interest and study (Mk.8:17).
#4. Hardness of heart, meaning stubbornness and rebellion (Mk.8:17).
#5. Eyes that cannot see, which is simply willful blindness to Truth (Mk.8:18; Mat.13:14-15).
#6. Ears that will not hear, which is willful rejection of Truth (Mk.8:18).
#7. Dull memory, suggesting willful forgetfulness (Mk.8:18). See Mark 4:12.
My friend, ALL these reasons are conscious, deliberate, malicious and willful. People should NOT reason, doubt, question, harden themselves, be dull of seeing and hearing, or be forgetful. There was NO excuse whatsoever for the apostles to be in this class because they had seen multiple thousands fed, healed and delivered from every kind of disease, destruction, demon possession and curse. They should have had faith enough in Christ by now to meet every problem. May we all learn a lesson from this!
The Word of God is the Bread of Life because the Word of God reveals Him to us. We, as His children, are to feed on the Bible and to be extremely careful of false teaching. I think this should be very clear to us in the teaching that He gives. BEWARE!! False teachers are abundant in every direction!
Blind Man Of Bethsaida Healed (Mark 8:22-26)
This specific instance of the healing of the blind man is found only in Mark.
Mark 8:22 And he cometh to Bethsaida; and they bring a blind man unto him, and besought him to touch him. (KJV)
And he cometh to Bethsaida . . . the city of Andrew, Peter and Philip (Jn.1:44), a fishing town situated by the sea of Galilee, although some say this was not the Bethsaida where Peter, Andrew and Philip had formerly lived, but another Bethsaida, afterwards called Julias, which was situated on the east bank of the Jordan, just above its entrance into the lake of Galilee. This is clear from the fact that Jesus had crossed from the west to the northeast side of the lake, in approaching the place (verses 10 &13). I think what is important here is what was done, NOT where it was done!
And they bring a blind man unto him . . . Jesus had been here before, and was known by the people there, who as soon as they heard of His arrival, and knowing what miracles were done by Him, brought a poor blind man, of their town, to Him, to be cured by Him.
And besought him to touch him . . . they had heard of, or seen cures performed by Him this way. This man is a symbol of those who are spiritually blind. He had no natural sight at all; he could not see anything; not the least bit of light of anything, UNTIL he was touched by Christ. So too it is with the natural man, everything is quite dark, even darkness itself, UNTIL they are made light by the Lord Jesus. These have NO sight and NO sense of their sinful, lost and dangerous condition they are in. They do NOT know that they blind, wretched, poor, miserable and naked (Rev.3:17). They cannot see Christ Jesus! They cannot see the majestic glory of His Person, they cannot see the fullness of His amazing grace, so they cannot see the nature and necessity of the salvation that comes only through Him! They are completely blind to any saving knowledge of God in His only begotten Son, the one and only Way of life and peace by Him. They are completely blind to the work of the Spirit of God upon the eternal soul of man. They have NO concern about any spiritual experience of the power of Gospel, or the glories of the world to come.
Here is another one of these remarkable miracles of our Lord. He assented to their request by touching his eyes. But you notice that He led the blind man out of town. Had Bethsaida, where many of His mighty works had been performed, become like Nazareth where He could no longer perform mighty works? Surely there is no medical value in saliva, but the Lord uses this to increase the faith of this man. Let us read this and learn the spiritual truth for us here.
Blindness, spiritual: (Mic.4:12; Mat.13:13-16,19; Jn.1:5,10; 3:20; 14:17; Rom.1:19-22; 11:25; 1 Cor.1:18; 2:14; 2 Cor.3:14; 4:3,6; Eph.4:18; 5:8; Col.1:13; 1 Thes.5:4-7; Tit.1:16; 1 Pet.2:9; 1 Jn.1:6,8. 2:9,11; 3:6)
Mark 8:23 And he took the blind man by the hand, and led him out of the town; and when he had spit on his eyes, and put his hands upon him, he asked him if he saw ought. (KJV)
And he took the blind man by the hand . . . not just to touch him, but in order to heal him, as they had asked, but to be his guide.
And led him out of the town . . . to shun all form of vain glory and popular applause, being willing to do the miracle in private, and because of the stubbornness and unbelief of the people who lived there, who were not worthy to be witnesses of such a cure (Mat.11:21).
And when he had spit on his eyes . . . He led the man on through the town, in the direction of His own journey, to heal him outside of town. Spit on his eyes . . . here again the act of spitting goes before the act of healing, as in the cure of the deaf stammerer (Mk.7:33). Here, He spits on the man's eyes, the part which is to be cured . . . not as a cause of healing him; for whatever use spittle may be of to such that have weak eyes, it cannot restore his sight unto him.
And put his hands upon him . . . . as He sometimes did, when He healed persons of any disorder.
He asked him, if he saw ought . . . if he saw anything at all. Christ's taking the blind man by the hand, and leading him out or the town, and spitting on his eyes, and putting his hands upon him, and then asking him if he saw anything, are symbolic of what Jesus does in spiritual conversion, when He turns men from darkness to light.
Christ had already cursed this city so now refused to do another miracle in it publicly (Mat.11:21).
Mark 8:24 And he looked up, and said, I see men as trees, walking. (KJV)
And he looked up . . . this is omitted in some versions. The sense here is, that he opened his eyelids, and lifted up his eyes, to try if he could see, and he could, but was imperfect yet.
And said, I see men, as trees, walking . . . he saw something at a distance from him, which he supposed to be men. He had not been born blind, or he would not have known how trees were different from men; but having lost his sight, when it was partially restored he received a distorted vision of the men around him, for they seemed tall and jagged in their outline like trees.
Mark 8:25 After that he put his hands again upon his eyes, and made him look up: and he was restored, and saw every man clearly. (KJV)
After that he had put his hands again upon his eyes . . . by the former account it does not say on what part of him Jesus put His Hands; but this decides it; for it seems plain, that Jesus first spit on his eyes, and then closed them, and put His Hands on them; which last action of His He repeated, although not the former one.
And made him look up . . . this is omitted in some versions. The words are an order or command of Christ to the man to lift up his eyes, and try again, to see if how he could see, and whether any better than before . . . which he did.
And he was restored . . . his sight was restored to him and he was perfectly cured of his blindness.
And saw every man clearly . . . this man, as before stated, was a symbol of one that is spiritually enlightened by the grace of God. Christ first separated this man from the rest of the multitude, this being the first step in election, and redemption and calling . . . for those who are illuminated by the Spirit of God can then be healed (of the disease of sin) by Christ. This man, upon his first response of sight, had a very dim, murky and imperfect view of things; could not very well tell one thing from another, even though he saw.
As at first conversion, the enlightened soul has just a cloudy view of things, especially of Christ Jesus, the glory and fullness of Who He is, the effectiveness of His precious Blood to save them (1 Pet.1:18-19), the merit of His righteousness (1 Cor.1:30), His ability and willingness to serve as our Saviour (Jn.3:15-18; 14:6); and especially those doctrines of the Gospel (Jn.1:17; Eph.1:13), that are more uplifting and personal.
Just as this man afterwards had a more clear and distinctive view of objects; so it is with TRUE believers in Christ . . . for their light increases and shines more and more each day. The Gospel light is not perfect in any who have the clearest views of things, because there is some darkness and imperfection in them yet; even though they may think they see all things clearly in comparison of what they did before. Saints under the Gospel dispensation (Rom.6:14-15), see more clearly than those under the legal dispensation did, because the object was at a greater distance from them then, and they saw the Promises afar off (Heb.11:13). The legal dispensation saw Promises that were obscure types shadows and sacrifices and dark prophecies. Moses, and his law, had a veil over them; but New Testament saints saw open face, without a veil, beholding as in a glass (2 Cor.3:18), the glory of the Lord Jesus and of Gospel Truths. Those who know most, see things most clearly and speak of them most clearly. How clearly will all things be seen in the New Jerusalem state when there will be no need of the light of the sun or moon of ordinances (Rev.21:23) . . . for Christ, the Lamb will be the everlasting Light in which the nations of them that are saved shall walk! Thank You Jesus!
2 Cor. 6:17 Wherefore come out from among them, and be ye separate, saith the Lord, and touch not the unclean thing; and I will receive you, (KJV)
Separate yourselves: (Ps.1:1-2; Jn.15:19; 17:6,16; 1 Cor.5:9-13; 2 Cor.6:17; Eph.5:11; 2 Thes.3:6; 1 Tim.5:22; 2 Tim.2:4,21; 1 Jn.2:15; Rev.18:4).
Mark 8:26 And he sent him away to his house, saying, Neither go into the town, nor tell it to any in the town. (KJV)
And he sent him away to his house . . . which seems to have been in one of the close neighboring villages.
Saying, Neither go into the town . . . the town or city of Bethsaida.
Nor tell it to any in the town . . . to any of the people of the town that he should meet with anywhere or at any time . . . the reason was mainly because the inhabitants of this place were notorious for their impenitence and unbelief. Christ had done many wonderful works among them and they refused to repent. They did not believe in Him, but despised Him, His doctrine and His miracles. Because of their neglect and contempt of Him, He was firm in His decision to withdraw His miracles from them.
What about today? Do you think that Christ Jesus at times deals with nations, cities and towns that disbelieve, reject and despise Him and His Gospel? Do you think that He is going to turn His Back on open and vulgar sin? Do you think that those hypocrites that sit in church every Sunday and continue to practice their sin in public, with no remorse, no repentance, but instead pride in what they were doing, will be overlooked on Judgment Day? NO!!! NOT according to the Bible! According to works: (Ps.62:12; Pro.24:12,29; Isa.59:18; Jer.21:14; 25:14; 32:19; Lam.3:64; Eze.7:8-9; 18:30; Hos.12:2; Zec.1:6; Mat.16:27; Rom.2:6; 2 Tim.4:14; Rev.2:23; 18:6; 20:12-13; 22:12).
Why did Jesus open this blind man’s eyes the way that He did? Possibly because there is a lesson for us here. There are three stages in this situation:
#1. Blindness. We ALL are at first spiritually blind. Just like the man here, we can say, "Once I was blind, but now I can see." But do you see that He gained only partial sight.
#2. Partial sight. This is our condition today. "For now we see through a glass darkly; but then face to face..." (1 Cor.13:12). NOT every believer has great spiritual discernment. There are just a few of these around! And NOT every believer has the SAME spiritual discernment. There are many things we do not fully understand yet.
#3. Perfect sight. The third stage of this healing is perfect vision. We shall get our 20-20 spiritual vision when we come into His Presence, and that's when we will really be able to see. Consider this: when our Lord had finished, He had healed this man perfectly. Eventually when we come into His awesome Presence, we shall be like Him; for we shall see Him as He is (1 Jn.3:2).
Have you noticed the different ways that our Lord used in opening the eyes of the blind? Here at Bethsaida when He healed the blind man, He touched his eyes. This man had quite an experience! When Jesus healed blind Bartimaeus (Mk.10;46), He did NOT touch him anywhere, He just spoke to him, and faith alone opened his eyes. The man who had been born blind was told to go and wash in the pool of Siloam and that is yet another totally different method according to John, chapter 9. My friend, there is a lesson for us.
Peter’s Confession of Jesus
Death Of Christ (8:27-38)
Mark 8:27 And Jesus went out, and his disciples, into the towns of Caesarea Philippi: and by the way he asked his disciples, saying unto them, Whom do men say that I am? (KJV)
And Jesus went out, and his disciples . . . from Bethsaida and Galilee
Into the towns Caesarea Philippi . . . Caesarea Philippi was a pagan city known for its worship of Greek gods and its temples devoted to the ancient god Pan. The ruler Philip, referred to in Mark 6:17, changed the city's name from Caesarea to Caesarea Philippi so that it would not be confused with the coastal city of Caesarea (Acts 8:40), the capital of the territory ruled by his brother Herod Antipas. This pagan city where many gods were recognized was a suitable place for Jesus to ask the apostles to recognize Him as the Son of God. (Mat.16:13).
And by the way he asked his disciples . . . as they were going from Galilee to those other towns.
Saying unto them; Whom do men say that I am? . . . He did not need any information of this; for He knew not only what was said by men but what was in their thoughts . . . but He asked them this question, to bring out their sense of Him, their faith in Him and to convey something to them that was SO very necessary, that they should be aware of. In Matthew16:13, it reads: "whom do men say that I, the son of man am?"
Christ Jesus speaks here of Himself, according to His outward appearance, and the existing opinion of men concerning Him. He looked to be just a man, born as other men were; and was a son of man, and no more to most, then and now. That is WHY He asks this question of the apostles. He is NOT asking what kind of a Man He was . . . was He a good, holy Man, or not, or was He the Messiah, or not . . . His question is, what do men in general, be they high or low, rich or poor, learned or unlearned, say of Him? "Whom do men say that I the Son of man am?" This is the SAME question that He is still asking today. He is still is the most controversial Person who has ever lived on this Earth, and people are still very confused about Him. Who do men say . . . This is the world's greatest question! WHO is Jesus? The Nazarenes had said that He was only the son of the carpenter; yet they acknowledged that on this belief they could not account for His wisdom and His mighty works. In other parts of Galilee they thought that He was something more, but WHAT He was more than, was a matter of dispute . . . then, and it still is today.
If you look on a map, you will find three Caesareas. Caesarea Philippi is located to the north of the Sea of Galilee. The Lord Jesus was in the north and He was in a position from which He was going to turn and begin a movement directly toward Jerusalem and the Cross.
Mark 8:28 And they answered, John the Baptist: but some say, Elias; and others, One of the prophets. (KJV)
And they answered, John the Baptist . . . some said He was John the Baptist, which was the opinion of Herod, and others.
But some say Elias . . . Elijah the "Tishbite", whom the Jews expected in person before the coming of the Messiah and imagined that Jesus was he: Elijah the Tishbite: (1 Ki.17:1; 21:17; 21:28; 2 Ki.1:8; 9:36)
And others one of the prophets . . . such as Jeremiah or Isaiah. All spoke highly and honorably of Him. The common people did not see Him as a mean person; they supposed by His doctrine and especially by His miracles that He was an extraordinary Prophet, which He was! (Mat.16:14).
Mark 8:29 And he saith unto them, But whom say ye that I am? And Peter answereth and saith unto him, Thou art the Christ. (KJV)
And he saith unto them, But whom say ye that I am? . . . it was because of this question that He asked the first one. (Mat.16:15).
And Peter answereth and saith unto him, thou art the Christ . . . the Messiah that was long ago promised and so often prophesied of in the books of Moses and the prophets; and whom the Jews have so much and so long expected. This confession of Peter, with which all the apostles agreed, speaks out what Jesus really was, and FAR exceeds the most exalted sentiments which the people had of Him. Jesus was NOT the forerunner of the Messiah, Jesus WAS the Messiah! He was NOT John the Baptist, not Elias in whose Spirit His forerunner was to come and did come, He was NOT any of the prophets . . . He was the Holy Prophet (Deut.18:15).
This is the best thing that Simon Peter ever said. He spoke for the group. Mark gives us only a brief section of the confession. See Matthew 16:13-20 for a more in depth version.
Christ is not a name. Jesus is His name. Christ is a title . . . in the Hebrew, it was the Messiah, which means the "Anointed One." The title assembles all the rich meaning of the Old Testament, but it is just a fragment of the fullness of Christ (Ps.2:2; 45:6-7; Isa.7:14; 9:6; Jer.23:6; Dan.9:24-25; Zec.9:9; Mal.3:1; 4:2). These are but a few of the many Old Testament references. Jesus, the Son of God, came to reveal God.
This was the apostles’ final examination for the first part of His ministry. They were now within six months of the Cross.
Mark 8:30 And he charged them that they should tell no man of him. (KJV)
And he charged them that they should tell no man of him . . .after He had declared His approval and praise of Peter's confession of faith, and signified He would build His church on that rock, and the gates of Hell would not prevail against it, and He promised Peter the keys of the kingdom of heaven; and that whatsoever was bound, or loosed by him on earth, should be bound and loosed in heaven; which are omitted by Mark, but told to us by Matthew (Mat.16:13-20). Why did Jesus warn His apostles not to tell anyone the Truth about Him? Jesus knew they needed more instruction about the work He would accomplish through His death and resurrection. Even though they confessed Jesus as the Christ, they still did NOT know just what it meant. SO . . . Why this strange warning? They were to wait until the Gospel story was completed, and they had more spiritual discernment. Notice the next verse.
Mark 8:31 And he began to teach them, that the Son of man must suffer many things, and be rejected of the elders, and of the chief priests, and scribes, and be killed, and after three days rise again. (KJV)
And he began to teach them . . . up to now, He had said nothing to them about His sufferings and His death, at least not in certain terms. But, now that they had been firmly established in their faith of Him, as the Messiah, He would tell them more, in more straight forward terms.
That the son of man must suffer many things . . . the Son of Man was one of His favorite titles of Himself. This title is used in the Gospels and Book of Acts about 390 times, means that He Himself, would be betrayed, apprehended, bound, smitten, spit upon, buffeted, and scourged; and which things must be done, and that He would suffer them, because it was so determined by God (Acts 2:23), and foretold many times in the Scriptures (Ps.22:6-20; 16:9-11; 18:2-3; 41:9; 68:18; 69:4-21; Isa.52:14; 53:1-12; Dan.9:24-27; Zec.11:12).
The name for Jesus, Son of Man, is Jesus' most common title for himself. It comes from (Dan.7:13-14), where the Son of Man is a heavenly Figure who, in the end times, has authority and power (Ps.8:4-6). The Son of Man means Jesus as the Messiah, the representative and the human Agent of God who is justified by God. The Son of Man here is connected closely with Peter's confession of Jesus as the Christ and confirms its Messianic significance. From here on, Jesus spoke very clearly and straight forward to His apostles about His approaching death and resurrection. He wanted to prepare them for what was going to happen to Him by telling them three times that He would soon die (Mk.8:31, 9:31; 10:33-34).
And be rejected of the elders, and of the chief priests and Scribes . . . these groups made up the grand Sanhedrim of the nation, and are the builders that were prophesied of by whom He would be rejected (Ps.118:22).
And be killed . . . in a violent way; His life would be taken away by force, without law or justice.
And after three days rise again . . . not on the fourth day, but after the third day came. Some versions read; and even the Pharisees themselves thus understood Christ (Mat.27:63-64).
Jesus did not reveal Himself, apart from His work of redemption. My friend, salvation depends on WHO He is and WHAT He did.
The final phase of their training begins here. It was at Caesarea Philippi that He first revealed His Cross to them.
Mark 8:32 And he spake that saying openly. And Peter took him, and began to rebuke him. (KJV)
And he spake that saying openly . . . about His sufferings, death and resurrection from the dead. He not only spoke it before them all, but in plain words, without a symbol; so that it was clearly understood by them. He spoke it freely but also boldly, with fearless courage, absolutely unafraid, He was NOT in the least discouraged, nor show any sign of fear of what was to befall Him.
And Peter took him, and began to rebuke him . . . at this time, Peter did not consider God's purposes, but only his own natural human desires and feelings. Peter wanted Christ to be King, but NOT the suffering servant prophesied in Isaiah 53. He was ready and eager to receive the glory of following the Messiah . . . but not the persecution. (Mat.16:22).
The Christian life is NOT a smooth highway to wealth, luxury, comfort and ease. Quite the contrary, it is often a rugged mountain path, with many ups and downs! It most often involves hard work, great persecution, deprivation and deep suffering. Peter was only seeing part of the picture. We should NOT echo his mistake. We must focus on the good that God can bring out of what may seem to be an apparent evil. We must remember how much Jesus loves us, and the Resurrection that followed His Crucifixion. HE LIVES!!! He is there for all who love and obey Him!
Mark 8:33 But when he had turned about and looked on his disciples, he rebuked Peter, saying, Get thee behind me, Satan: for thou savourest not the things that be of God, but the things that be of men. (KJV)
But when he had turned about . . . and looked at Peter, and showed quick resentment at what he said.
And looked on his disciples . . . He cast His eye toward them all at the same time, and expressed to them the same displeasure in His countenance, for they too were of the same mind.
He rebuked Peter, Saying, Get thee behind me, Satan: for thou savourest not the things that be of God . . . things which were according to the will of God, as the sufferings of Christ were: they were according to the determinate counsel of his will (Acts 2:23); what He had determined in His purposes and council would be; and what He had declared in the Scriptures of Truth, the revelation of His will would be (Isa.53:6,10).
But the things that be of men . . . such as Christ being a temporal prince, that would set up a worldly kingdom, and deliver the Jews from the Roman yoke, and that He would make His subjects happy, with wealth of all worldly things; and especially His favorites, as the apostles were. These all were schemes of men's planning, and went along with the corrupt nature and carnal feelings of men. These current things, were far too present in Peter’s mind. That is why the Lord rebuked him in such a very severe, although very just way.
Mark 8:34 And when he had called the people unto him with his disciples also, he said unto them, Whosoever will come after me, let him deny himself, and take up his cross, and follow me. (KJV)
And when he had called the people unto him . . . it seems that the people followed Him out of Galilee, from Bethsaida, for it was in the way from there to Caesarea Philippi, that Christ had this conversation with His apostles; who walked together alone. The multitude followed at some distance . . . the private conversation being ended, Christ called, or beckoned to the people, to come nearer to Him.
With his disciples also . . . for what He was about to say, concerned them all.
He said unto them, Whosoever will come after me . . . in a spiritual sense, as this multitude did in a natural one, and which is the same thing as to be a disciple of His. We must go after Him! We must follow Him spiritually, with all our heart and soul and mind and strength! (Mk.12:30).
Let him deny himself, and take up his cross, and follow me . . . meaning that His TRUE followers must deny themselves of worldly advantages, and suffer many things for His sake, just as He did for us! (Mat.16:24). Let him deny himself . . . deny his sinful self, deny ungodliness, deny worldly lusts; leave behind former sinful companions, deny righteous self, and renounce all his own works of righteousness . . . for NONE of these have anything at all to do with justification (Rom.3:24-25; 5:1) and salvation (Lk.12:8; Jn.3:16; Rom.10:9-11). The hardest person in the world to deny is yourself. To deny self is to put SELF completely out of the picture and to put Christ in, in the place of self. Take up his cross . . . joyfully receive and patiently bear every affliction and evil (1 Thes.5:18), no matter how shameful and painful it may be, because there is always One to help us. We must quietly submit, and carry our cross (denial of self), totally accepting the will of God, as we imitate our Lord. We do not to take up Christ's Cross but instead our own cross. There absolutely IS a cross for you and a cross for me . . . IF we are sincere in our desire to follow Him. And follow me . . . following Jesus is an exercise of grace, humility, zeal, patience and self-denial. No more ME, ME, ME! Following Jesus is all about Jesus! NOT YOU! Following Jesus means you surrender to God your will, affections, body and soul. Following Jesus is NOT to seek your own happiness as the supreme object, but be willing to renounce all, and lay down your life, if that is what is required. (Mat.16:24, also 10:38).
Mark 8:35 For whosoever will save his life shall lose it; but whosoever shall lose his life for my sake and the gospel's, the same shall save it. (KJV)
For whosoever will save his life . . . we should be willing to lose our life for the sake of the Gospel, not because our life is useless but because NOTHING . . . NOT even life itself . . . can ever compare to what we gain with Christ. Jesus wants us to CHOOSE (on our own free will), to follow Him . . . rather than lead a life of sin and self-satisfaction. He wants us to STOP trying to control our own destiny and to let Him direct us on the path He wants us to take.
My friend, as the Creator, Jesus knows much better than we do what real life is all about. He wants our submission, not self-hatred; He wants us to lose our self-centered determination to be in charge. Creator, Jesus: (Jn.1:3,10; 1 Cor.8:6; Eph.3:9; Col.1:16; Heb.1:1-2,10; 3:3; Rev.3:14).
Shall lose it . . . meaning he shall not enjoy this life with honor and comfort now, and in the life to come it shall be much less . . . NO peace, NO pleasure and NO happiness in the hereafter, but shall instead be under the power of the second death. Second death: (Rev.2:11; 20:6,14; 21:8).
But whosoever shall lose his life for my sake and the Gospel's . . . this means that if anyone is willing to part with this life on Earth, if and when he is called to do so, rather than deny Christ and His Gospel, standing bold and refusing to deny Christ . . .
The same shall save it . . . there are places in the world today where it is a crime stand up for Jesus. People in this world today are being put to death because the refuse to deny Christ Jesus! BUT . . . although a person will lose his life now, he will be raised to eternal life. BUT . . . all those who have apostatized from Christ, will rise to shame, and everlasting contempt. (Mat.16:25).
Resurrection from the dead: (Job 14:14; Ps.49:15; 71:20; Ecc.3:21; Isa.25:8; Dan.2-3; Hos.13:14; Mat.22:31; Mk.12:26; 16:6; Lk.14:14; 20:37; 24:26,46; Jn.5:21,25,29; 6:40,45,54; 11:25-26; Acts 23:6; 24:15,21; 26:8; Rom.4:17; 1 Cor.6:14; 15:22,42,52,54; 2 Cor.1:9; 4:14; Phil.3:11; 1 Thes.4:16; Heb.6:2; 11:35; Rev.20:13).
Christians killed worldwide, this is fact, folks! They were killed because they believed in Christ as Saviour, and did NOT deny Him! Great will be their reward in Heaven!
Mark 8:36 For what shall it profit a man, if he shall gain the whole world, and lose his own soul? (KJV)
For what shall it profit a man . . . consider this: there shall be millions who by denying Christ, and His Gospel, may not only save their life for in this world, but also acquire for themselves great riches and wealth . . . in THIS world!
If he shall gain the whole world . . . but my friend, even IF that were possible to be done, which the covetous and determined worldly man is hopeful for . . . what IF he did realize his desire . . . of what benefit, what good, would this be in the outcome of things on Judgment Day? Absolutely NONE! For should the following be his case, as it certainly shall,
And lose his own soul? . . . the soul is immortal and undying, and my friend, when the world, and the glory of it passes away, the soul will still be in existence! And the soul is of much more worth than the whole world! The world can only be enjoyed for a short period of time by a person, and then they die . . . but the soul within the body lives forever! IF that soul is lost and damned, its torment always abides, and the smoke of it ascends forever, its worm never dies, and its fire is never quenched (Mk.9:43,45).
Mark 8:37 Or what shall a man give in exchange for his soul? (KJV)
Or what shall a man give in exchange for his soul? . . . what Jesus is really saying is: there is NO amount of money or real estate, or cars in your garage . . . that can ever deliver the soul out of its miserable state and condition! Riches will NOT profit in the day of wrath, wealth will NOT deliver a soul from condemnation and damnation and ruin (Mk.16:16; Jn.3:18). SO . . . IF a person did have the whole world, he could NOT redeem his soul with it . . . for he has nothing else to give for it, and therefore it is past all recovery. (Mat.16:26).
Heb. 10:26 For if we sin wilfully after that we have received the knowledge of the truth, there remaineth no more sacrifice for sins, (KJV) . . . When people knowingly reject Christ's offer of salvation, they reject God's most precious Gift (JESUS)! They ignore the leading of the Holy Spirit, the One who transfers to us God's saving love. This warning applies to anyone, Jew or Gentile, who rejects Jesus for another religion or, when they understood Christ's atoning work, and intentionally turns away from it. (Num.15:30-31; Mk.3:28-30). The FACT is: there is absolutely NO other acceptable sacrifice for sin than the death of Christ Jesus on the cross (Jn.14:6). IF someone deliberately rejects the Sacrifice of Christ after understanding what the Gospel teaches about it, or IF a person refuses to HEAR the Truth when someone brings it to them, then there is NO way for that person to receive eternal life in Heaven (salvation), because God has NOT, nor will He ever, provide any other name in all of Heaven for people to call on to save them (Acts 4:12).
Mark 8:38 Whosoever therefore shall be ashamed of me and of my words in this adulterous and sinful generation; of him also shall the Son of man be ashamed, when he cometh in the glory of his Father with the holy angels. (KJV)
Whosoever therefore shall be ashamed of me . . . He suffered terribly, was crucified and put to death on the cross for us! IF we are too proud to believe God (1 Jn.5:10-13); and accept His only Way to Heaven (Jn.14:6), or IF we, through the disgrace of the cross and fear of men, are ashamed of Christ, and do not profess faith in Him, but conceal and keep it to ourselves (closet Christians, hypocrites) . . . we are ashamed of Him!
And of my words . . . the doctrines of the Gospel: remission of sins by His Blood (1 Pet.1:18-19), justification by His righteousness (Rom.5:1; 1 Cor.1:30), and salvation alone by Him (Jn.14:6), and with every other Truth relating to Him, or connected with these. His Words are His doctrines, His instructions to us! We must NOT be ashamed of His Words!
In this adulterous and sinful generation . . . an age given to wickedness, particularly to adultery. I think this means both in a moral and spiritual sense, because both physical and spiritual adultery was wide spread among them . . . what about NOW? Is this country not consumed with adultery and immorality today?
Of him also shall the son of man be ashamed . . . IF you do NOT take a stand FOR Christ, you are ashamed of Him! IF you do NOT take notice of Him; IF you do NOT confess His Name, you are ashamed of Him! IF you turn away from Him, or do NOT say one favorable word about Him or for Him, you are ashamed of Him! What you in fact are doing is, requesting Him to go away from you, and my friend, this He will do,
When he cometh in the glory of his Father . . . the same glory that the Father has, being His Son, and of the same nature with Him, and equal to Him (Jn.10:30); and as Mediator, He is endued with power and authority from Him, to judge the world; and when He comes, he will be accompanied . . . With the holy angels . . . who will descend from Heaven with Him, and be employed on Earth by Him. Angels serve Christ: (Dan.7:10; Mat.13:41; 16:27; 24:31; 25:31; 26:53; Mk.8:38; Lk.2:13; 22:43; Jn.1:51; 2 Thes.1:7; Heb.1:6; Rev.1:1; 5:11). See: Mat.16:27.
The meaning of this Passage is, that whosoever shall refuse, through lust, pride or wickedness, to acknowledge and serve Christ here on Earth, shall be excluded from His Kingdom hereafter.
The Lord Jesus was poor, lowly, meek and despised. Yet there was a matchless beauty about Him. My dear friend, He will come again, this time in an awesome and majestic splendor! NOT as the Babe of Bethlehem; NOT as the Man of Nazareth; but as the Son of God, in majesty and glory. All those that would not acknowledge Him here in this life, shall be rejected by Him there in His eternal Kingdom! They that would not serve Him willingly in this life, will never enjoy Him in Heaven! Everyone that would cast Him out and despise Him, shall be cast out by Him, condemned and consigned to eternal, hopeless sorrow.
Whosoever shall be ashamed: (Isa.53:3; Mat.10:32-33; Mk.8:38; Lk.9:26; 12:9; Jn.5:44; 12:43; Rom.2:5; 1 Cor.6:9-10; 2 Thes.1:8-10; 2 Tim.1:8; 1 Jn.2:23; Rev.20:11; 21:8).
This amazing Jesus, constantly turns the world's viewpoint upside down with His Words of first and last, saving and losing. My dear friend, He gives us a choice! We have a free will, and we can make decisions for ourselves! We can reject Jesus now and be rejected by Him at His Second Coming, OR we can accept Him now and be accepted by Him then. Rejecting Christ could help us escape shame here and now, but it will guarantee an eternity of shame later on.
The Lord does not reveal His person apart from His work of redemption. After Peter confessed who He was and the apostles truly recognized Him, He immediately told them, "...the Son of man must suffer many things, and be rejected of the elders, and of the chief priests, and scribes, and be killed, and after three days rise again" (Mk.8:31). He is NOT putting down a condition of salvation, but stating the position of those who are saved. This is what He is talking about. "Whosoever therefore shall be ashamed of me." What kind of a Christian are you today? Are you one who acknowledges Him and serves Him and makes every attempt to glorify Him? My friend, this is very important in these days in which we live: an adulterous and sinful generation! Are you ready for Judgment Day?
Gospel of Mark
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