Yesterday we had our third session and it was good to meet some new folks. We’re always open for newcomers to join us as we explore and discuss biblical Christianity together. It was great to have Melody join us and we were delighted to congratulate her and Matthew on their recent Valentine’s Day engagement.
This week we discussed the reason why Jesus came to earth by examining his teaching on hell in the Gospel of Mark and we talked about some of the challenging questions surrounding that teaching.
In our “big picture” segment where we put the Gospel of Mark into the larger storyline of the Bible, we looked at “First Adam vs Last Adam.” We compared the Devil’s tempting tactics both with Adam and Eve in the Garden of Eden and with Jesus. It’s interesting to note that the devil tempted Adam and Eve in the same way he tempts Jesus. But, the cool thing is that unlike Adam and Eve who fell for the devil’s deceptions, Jesus does not using Scripture every time to foil the attack of the devil. Jesus is described in the book of Romans as the ultimate successor of Adam: Romans 5:14 ” Yet death reigned from Adam to Moses, even over those whose sinning was not like the transgression of Adam, who was a type of the one who was to come. ” You can read about Adam and Eve’s Temptation here: Genesis 3:1-7, and you can compare it with and read about Jesus’ temptation here: Mark 1:12-13, Luke 4:1-13). You can also download our “big picture” handout by clicking on the thumbnail or on this link.
The homework questions for next week are to read Mark 6:1-8:29 and answer:
1. In earlier chapters (1-5) Mark has built up a picture of Jesus’ power and authority. He’s shown various miracles: healing the sick, casting out demons, raising the dead. How does our passage this week add to that (See: Mark 6:32-44, 47-48, 7:31-37; 8:1-10, 22-26).
2. In Mark 6:2-3 Why was Jesus’ hometown offended at Jesus? Why did they find it so hard to believe in Him?
3. What were the different reactions to Jesus’ preaching:
a) in his home synagogue? (Mark 6:1-6)
b) among people generally (Mark 6:14-15, 53-56, 7:37)
c) from the disciples (Mark 6:51-52)
d) from other religious leaders (Mark 8:11)
e) Why do you think people responded so differently?
4. Jesus saw the large crowd in Mark 6:34 as “sheep without a shepherd.”
a) What can we learn about Jesus from this? What does He do?
b) What can we learn about ourselves?
5. How would you have answered Jesus Question in Mark 8:29 before you began Exploring Biblical Christianity? How has your understanding changed since the beginning?
Hope to see you at our next session!