Mark 6

Mark 6

Vs. 3, “Isn’t this the carpenter? Isn’t this Mary’s son and the brother of James, Joseph, a Judas and Simon? Aren’t his sisters here with us?” And they took offense at him.”  Things are not always what they seem, they didn’t get it.  How sad to think that Jesus was rejected from his own hometown (vs. 1-6).  Many of the events we just went over earlier with Matthew’s Gospel.  While the enemy seemed to be victorious over John the Baptist, there was no stopping Jesus (vs. 14-29).  The compassion upon the many people is always a good lesson for us as we seem to get to busy to care for others in our lives (vs. 30-44).

 

Regarding application…Hardened Heart.  Vs. 52, “for they had not understood about the loaves; their hearts were hardened.”  Mark gives us some insight to the feeding of the 5000 and the discilples hearts.  They didn’t get it.  They didn’t understand the purpose of the miracle or even perhaps who Jesus really was.  Even though they had just gotten back on their own missionary journey, their process of understanding still took some time.  Their hearts were still needing to be softened.  Question: What does this mean for us?  Don’t get discouraged, don’t be afraid (vs. 50)…Jesus is so patient.  He does not expect us all at one instant moment to get it.  It takes time, it takes effort, it takes making mistakes.  Though their hearts were hardened, it was a process…for they still desired to soften their heart.  And that’s what God is asking of us too.

Matthew 6

Vs. 33, “But seek first his kingdom and his righteousness, and all these things will be given to you as well.”  Yesterday’s chapter, Jesus focused on inward attitudes toward’s outward actions.  As we continue the “Sermon on the Mount”, we see Jesus address the outward actions of giving, prayer and fasting.  Don’t misunderstand…Jesus is not saying that we must not do these things.  Rather, it is the motive of our heart.  We are also taught by Jesus the model outline of prayer.  We are not to pray as other religions do with repetitious and fancy words.  In essense, prayer is just having that relationship with the Father.  We also see Jesus address the topic of how we are to look at worldy possessions.  There is always the danger of loving them too much and worrying about them in our life.

 

Regarding application…Worrying.  Vs. 27, “Who of you by worrying can add a single hour to his life?”  Question: Is there something in your life that you are worrying about?  If so, allow the words of Jesus to bring comfort in your heart.  When we worry, we get anxious and we can’t think straight.  It takes it toll doesn’t it?  But God is our biggest peace of mind.  When buy something large in value, we generally will get insurance.  That insurance gives us peace of mind that if something happens to our house, car, and even life…the insurance will pay the value of what we lost.  If insurance can give us peace of mind, how much can our Heavenly Father do?  He is our biggest insurance policy when it comes to our lives.  Don’t allow the events of our lives to bring worry that debilitates us.  God is bigger!

Jeremiah 6

Vs. 1, “Flee for safety, people of Benjamin! Flee from Jerusalem! Sound the trumpet in Tekoa! Raise the signal over Beth Hakkerem! For disaster looms out of the north, even terrible destruction.”  The Lord gives a final warning to Judah in the first three verses.  Even in the midst of impending castastrophe, God would give a last chance to any who might hear His voice!  But we also see the LORD Almighty would speak directly to the Babylonians directing them in their attack against Judah!  God is a God of consequences & wrath!  It is only natural that Jeremiah would be saddened that nobody listened or would listen to his warnings (vs. 10).  No one would escape the wrath…Men, women, the elderly & children.  Judah’s hypocritical sacrifices were more than God could bear.  This time…God was not not purifying them with fire, He was punishing them with fire.  Remember that Jeremiah was a prophet & these events have not yet occured.

Regarding application…Shameless.  Vs. 15, “Are they ashamed of their loathsome conduct? No, they have no shame at all; they do not even know how to blush.  So they will fall among the fallen; they will be brought down when I punish them,” says the LORD.”  I think our society today is very shameless in its actions.  When Adam & Even had sinned, they realized they were naked & went to cover themselves.  But, it seems today…if that had happened…Adam & Eve wouldn’t mind.  Sex sells & attracts…so that’s why we see so many shameless people flaunt their bodies and not even blink an eye.  There’s no shame these days in so many other ways too.  Not just physically….but when Christians shamelessly sin outright (get drunk, live with their boyfriends/girlfriends, flaunt their money, etc…)….that’s the type of sin God abhors.  The End Times will be like the days of Noah.  In the midst of this increasing shameless society, let us be “Holy” and set apart from the world.  We don’t have to dress the same, talk the same, and live the same way to be a part of society.  As Christians we cannot escape society, for we must be a light to the world…but let us not conform to it either (Romans 12:1)

Revelation 6

Daniel 9:27, “He will confirm a covenant with many for one ‘seven.’  In the middle of the ‘seven’ he will put an end to sacrifice and offering. And on a wing of the temple he will set up an abomination that causes desolation, until the end that is decreed is poured out on him.”  John begins to explain the first half of the beginning of the 7 year tribulation!  Jesus takes the sealed book and begins to open the seals!

First Seal

The rider on the white horse with the bow has been speculated differently.  Some believe it is Jesus, some believe it represent’s all of creation’s greed, but most scholars today believe this rider is none other than the Antichrist himself!  Remember, the Antichrist will not appear at first as a villain.

Second Seal

The Antichrist now exchanges his white horse for a fiery red one!  God temporarily gives the antichrist authority over the world.  He exchanges his bow for a sword and the world peace ends shortly as wars between countries escalate.

Third Seal

The black horse coincides with the famine that is to come to the whole world.  The rider hasn’t changed…it’s stil the antichrist…and he comes holding scales (weight balances).  This will indicate that the governement’s will have control over the food as food will grow scarce.  The quart of wheat & three quarts of barley were almost nothing and the poor would receive little…while the oil & wine were reserved for the filthy rich.

Fourth Seal

This pale (greenish) horse represents 1/4 of the earth’s population being wiped out by Death & Hades.  Death would come to many, in what would be the largest amount of people to die in all of history!

Fifth Seal

In the OT, priests would poor the blood of sacrifce under the alter…but here we see the souls of those sacrificed for Christ under the alter of God.  But it wasn’t time for God’s vengence, for others who would yet come to know Christ during the tribulation would come and have to die for His Name’s sake.  There were still to be more martyrs…and in fact in the past century…more have died for Jesus’ name then the 1900 years preceding it.  And there are still more to come!  Are you ready to die for Jesus?

Sixth Seal

World chaos will come & a mighty earthquake will desolate much of the earth.  The people who experience this will know it is of the Mighty Hand of God.  This begins the second half of the 7 year period of tribulation.

Regarding application…Wrath of God.  vs. 16, “They called to the mountains and the rocks, “Fall on us and hide us from the face of him who sits on the throne and from the wrath of the Lamb!”  Yes indeed…this is the same Lamb who takes away the sins of the world….the same Lamb who died for all that they know God.  But now we see the wrath of the Lamb!  But what is wrath?  Dictionary meaning: punishment for an offence.  But realize that God is not vengeful and full of anger as we would understand it.  One day soon Jesus will come back to give the biggest consequence to a sinful world.  But it is not our right to shell out wrath…that is only reserved for God.  We must continue to love & draw the lost & sinner to Christ.  But one day, sinners will have no more time.  May we do our best to show this lost world the most incredible Love of the Lamb!

Hebrews 6

Vs. 4-6, “It is impossible for those who have once been enlightened, who have tasted the heavenly gift, who have shared in the Holy Spirit, 5who have tasted the goodness of the word of God and the powers of the coming age, 6if they fall away, to be brought back to repentance, because to their loss they are crucifying the Son of God all over again and subjecting him to public disgrace.” I am sharing this long passage because it is one that is confusing to most of us. The key to looking at this is to remember to step back and look at the full context of Hebrews as well as the the whole of Scripture. When we have an elementary faith (Vs. 1)…it is harder to understand the concept of Salvation. Does this mean we can lose our salvation? Does it mean that there were people that thought they were saved but really were not (Matt. 24), is it referring to certain people who lived in specific times, is this just a hypothetical situation? The main subject of this chapter is not salvation but repentance. I will die on this earth believing to the end in “once saved, always saved.” If we could lose our salvation…this nullifies the Cross of Christ. I think we can most definitely disappoint our Heavenly Father and lose some of the rewards and treasures that could be given to us…but I do not believe we are chastized from Heaven. A Greek study of the word “fall away” would show us the meaning: parapipto, which means “to fall aside, to turn aside, to wander.”…some can interpret this as falling away from salvation, but that is not the case. Does this make sense?

Regarding application…Eternal Security. Vs. 19, “We have this hope as an anchor for the soul, firm and secure…” Question: How does the knowledge “Eternal Security” affect the lives of Christians? To put it in simple terms: We can either take it for granted (like the Hebews) or turn all the more in repetance and spiritual maturity. I would like to think the majority of Christians would continue to grow…but sadly, this does not seem to be the case. With great things brings great responsibility. Eternal Security is one of the most incredible gifts of assurance we could ever ask for. It takes the burden of worry off our backs. It helps us to know that there will be a light at the end of the tunnel.

When I became a Christian at 16, I knew in my heart of hearts I was truly saved….BUT…I did what so many of us have done, Vs. 6 “…are crucifying the Son of God all over again…”  You see…while we have “Eternal Security”…it is very possible to die in this life totally having done little for Jesus….and yet….go to Heaven! Some may cry out injustices…but that is just one of the amazing things about the Love of Christ. The repentant thief on the cross never got the chance to live for Christ…for he would die that same day. He never did anything….yet was still saved because he believed and put his trust in Christ. We have done that too….but we are not dying on a cross. We must take the short time we have on this earth and grow & mature in the Lord so that others will see Christ in Us!