From Rev Dr Tom Nibbe
YAHWEH'S PROMISE REGARDING JESUS "...'The days are coming' declares the Lord, 'when I will raise up to David, a righteous Branch, a King who will reign wisely and do what is just and right in the land... in His days Judah will be saved and Israel will live in safety...this is the name by which He will be called... THE LORD OUR RIGHTEOUSNESS." (Jeremiah 23:1-6
WE ARE GOD'S HOLY TEMPLE "...you are no longer foreigners and aliens, but fellow citizens with God's people and members of God's household, built on the foundation of the apostles and prophets, with Christ Jesus --- Himself as the chief cornerstone...in Him the whole building is joined together and rises to become a holy temple in the Lord...and in Him, you too are being built together to become a dwelling in which God lives by His Spirit..." (Ephesians 2:11-22)
IN LOVE JESUS' MINISTERS "...when Jesus landed and saw a large crowd ...He had compassion on them, because they were like sheep without a shepherd...so He began to teach them many things..." (Mark 6:30-34,53-56)
"...they begged Him to let them touch even the edge of His cloak, and all who touched Him were healed..." (Mark 6:56b)
Quotations To Think About
"...if you wish to drown, don't torture yourself with shallow water..." (Anonymous)
"...my life is in the hands of any fool who makes me lose my temper..." (Joseph Hunter)
"...the mass of humanity lead lives of quiet desperation..." (Henry David Thoreau)
"...the efforts which we make to escape from our destiny only serve to lead us into it..." (Ralph Waldo Emerson)
"...you can fool some of the people some of the time...
...you can fool most of the people most of the time...
...but you cannot fool all the people all the time..." (Abraham Lincoln)
WE'LL REMEMBER THIS ONE "...if you hate a person, you hate something in that person that is part of yourself...what isn't part of ourselves doesn't disturb us..." (Hermann Hesse)
Gracious, loving God,
This is the day you have made for us to live in. We have a choice to make and you leave that up to us. We can choose to be judgmental, critical, and negative. Or we can choose to accept your invitation that we take the high road in life.
We can give thanks for all situations we will face.
We can make the best of every single circumstance.
We can trust that you won't let anything to happen that isn't part of your perfect plan for our lives.
We promise to do our best, and as in past days, we ask that you forgive us our sins, and know that you will forgive us when we fall short of our goal of pleasing you and acting according to your purpose. We know that you are a compassionate God and we love you for it.
In Jesus' name. Amen.
Now Jesus of Nazareth makes His appearance. His ministry to the common people sets off a dynamic chain reaction throughout Israel, including avid note within the royal household.
The day of the "forbearer" of the promise made to David (2 Samuel 7:13) passes with John's death...
Enter...Jesus of Nazareth (Galilee)
The years of ministry and eventual passion have begun. Emmanuel made His appearance. ["Emmanuel" means "God with us"]. God Almighty took on human flesh through Jesus.
Even King Herod heard about Jesus of Nazareth. Jesus' name had become well known, even in sophisticated Jerusalem. Up until the sixth chapter of Mark's Gospel, Jesus called His disciples, taught in the synagogue in Capernaum, cast out evil spirits, healed Simon Peter's mother-in-law who has fever, healed leprosy, healed a paralytic, taught by the Sea of Galilee, and even calmed a storm or two. The deed which really got King Herod's attention was when Jesus raised up Jairus' daughter....Herod exclaimed,
"John, the man I beheaded, has been raised from the dead!"
God in human flesh, commissioned for service through baptism by John the Baptist in the River Jordan, had begun a ministry among the people. The Gospel of John (1:10ff) says this about Him:
"He was in the world, and though the world was made though Him, the world didn't recognize Him...He came to that which was his own, but his own didn't receive Him ...the Word became flesh and made His dwelling among us...we've seen His glory, the glory of the One and Only, who came from the Father, full of grace and truth..."
Word spread quickly about the healing hands of this special man from Galilee...
Many had come from afar. They were there in the thousands. Some had lost their jobs and needed to hear a word to give them confidence and hope. Some had lost loved ones and needed to be comforted. Some were disabled and mistreated, a fate for many worse than any human being should ever be treated. Some were in pain, many with long-term illness. Many were disabled. Some had nothing at all...no job to support their family, no food to eat, some with no family, no means means of transportation, and no home to live in...homeless---out on the street. Some had been sorely abused all through their live and needed to hear a word that would bring them peace and a sense of well-being. They had one hope, even if, only, to touch the hem of His garment to be healed or made whole. They were all assured that Jesus would help them.
He had compassion on them. They were like sheep without a shepherd...a sad, beaten-down crowd. What a ragged bunch! Jesus' heart went out to them. He knew what they needed...personal comfort took a back-seat within Him...
The phase comes in the 34th verse, "...so He began teaching them many things..." I've wondered for years, what did Jesus say to them. What did he teach them? I can't wait to ask Him that question some day...
Perhaps He let them know, as Saint Paul (Romans 8:28) would say, "...in all things God works for the good of those who love Him, who have been called according to His purpose..." Perhaps Jesus shared what Saint Peter later wrote, (1 Peter 1:6,7), "...for a little while you may have to suffer grief in all kinds of trials...these come so that your faith---of greater worth than gold [which perishes even though refined by fire]---may be proved genuine and result in praise, glory and honor...when you receive the goal of your faith...the salvation of your souls..."
We just don't know what Jesus said to them, but I'm sure it made a great deal of positive difference in their lives.
The Lord Jesus not only had the power to heal the sick, raise the dead, and feed five thousand with extremely limited resources...but---He had compassion...for the Gospel writer Mark this fact seemed so very important.
It causes us to take note of the importance of being a compassionate person at all times, especially when it's inconvenient for us...especially, like Jesus and the disciples, when we're weary and hungry, to be motivated to serve others anyway. That's the real test for a heart bent upon pleasing God. We'd have to admit we aren't always up to it. I'm sure the disciples weren't. I guess that's the great difference between the mindset of Jesus and just trying, on our own terms, to do the right thing and look half-way decent before others.
The call to follow Christ Jesus is to sometimes be tired, weary and hungry, and yet, have the vision to have "compassion". That's the real test. Are we up for that? I rest assured that's what the folks who prepare the lessons for the Sundays of the church year had in mind.
May you have a Sunday and the week following blessing after abundant blessing to carry you through. May the Lord have mercy upon us and grant us peace and joy, no matter what the "enemy" and the world may give us! We're more than conquerors through Jesus who loves us.
Scripture quotations marked (NIV) are taken from the Holy Bible, New International Version®, NIV®. Copyright © 1973, 1978, 1984, 2011 by Biblica, Inc.™ Used by permission of Zondervan. All rights reserved worldwide www.zondervan.com. The “NIV” and “New International Version” are trademarks registered in the United States Patent and Trademark Office by Biblica, Inc.™