The Book of Mark [Lesson 2]

The Book of Mark [Lesson 2]

Good morning everyone.

Two weeks ago, we began our study in the Book of Mark.

This book represents the Lord Jesus Christ as a humble servant.

The whole book can be summarized by [Mark 10:45].

I invite all of us to read it aloud together.

Mark 10:45 For even the Son of man came not to be ministered unto, but to minister, and to give his life a ransom for many.

Last time we stopped at verse 5.

God used John the Baptist to proclaim the coming of the Messiah.

In the wilderness, people were repenting after they heard what John preached.

They came forth to be baptized by John at the river of Jordan.

This outward and evident action showed their repenting hearts.

Mark 1:6 And John was clothed with camel’s hair, and with a girdle of a skin about his loins; and he did eat locusts and wild honey;

We can see the description of John the Baptist.

He was clothed with camel’s hair.

He had a belt made of an animal skin.

He ate locusts and wild honey.

Mark 1:7 And preached, saying, There cometh one mightier than I after me, the latchet of whose shoes I am not worthy to stoop down and unloose.

John was preaching the message of the coming of the Messiah.

John simply said that he was unworthy to be compared with the Lord Jesus Christ.

John realized his position. 

He knew that he belonged to the lowest ground.

This showed his humbleness.

Mark 1:8 I indeed have baptized you with water: but he shall baptize you with the Holy Ghost.

We can discuss the word, baptism briefly.

It means to be “immersed”.

In the Bible, you will see this term is used in various contexts.

Water baptism is a symbol of the dead, burial, and resurrection of the Lord Jesus Christ.

Only saved believers can be baptized by immersion into the water.

We often hear the term, baptism of the Holy Spirit

This happens when a person gets saved. 

It happens at the moment of his salvation. 

The Holy Spirit baptizes the person and placing him into the Body of Christ [1 Corinthians 12:13].

1 Corinthians 12:13 For by one Spirit are we all baptized into one body, whether we be Jews or Gentiles, whether we be bond or free; and have been all made to drink into one Spirit.

Next is the term often heard as the baptism of fire.

Those of the Pentecostal background wrongly communicated it.

This term only belongs to all lost sinners who never get saved. 

It is to be burned eternally in the lake of fire [Revelation 20:15].

Revelation 20:15 And whosoever was not found written in the book of life was cast into the lake of fire.

In the local church, we will have a saved person who is baptized by the Holy Spirit.

But that person, after his salvation, may probably never get baptized scripturally by immersion.

A saved person will never have a baptism of fire!

Mark 1:9 And it came to pass in those days, that Jesus came from Nazareth of Galilee, and was baptized of John in Jordan.

We can see that the Lord Jesus Christ, in His humanity, was raised in Nazareth.

He came to be baptized by immersion by John the Baptist in the river of Jordan.

Mark 1:10  And straightway coming up out of the water, he saw the heavens opened, and the Spirit like a dove descending upon him:

Mark 1:11  And there came a voice from heaven, saying, Thou art my beloved Son, in whom I am well pleased.

Here we start to see the word, straightway, used to describe the action of the Lord Jesus Christ.

Verse 10 and 11 support the doctrine of the Trinity. 

One God. 

Three distinct persons.

In verse 10, we have the Lord Jesus Christ, God the Son, in the river of Jordan.

In the same verse, we see the manifestation of God the Holy Spirit like a dove descending.

In verse 11, we see the announcement from heaven by God the Father.

This verse also tells us that the Lord Jesus Christ pleases God the Father.

Mark 1:12 And immediately the Spirit driveth him into the wilderness.

Mark 1:13 And he was there in the wilderness forty days, tempted of Satan; and was with the wild beasts; and the angels ministered unto him.

In the Book of Mark, you will not see details of how the Lord Jesus Christ dealt with the Devil in the wilderness.

You cannot find the famous quote by the Lord Jesus Christ to Satan saying, “it is written,” in the Book of Mark.

If you would like to see a detailed narrative about this, you need to go to [Matthew 4:1-11] and [Luke 4:1-13].

Without reading the Book of Matthew and Luke, you will not get a complete view of this temptation by Satan to the Lord Jesus Christ.

Only in the Book of Mark, we can see the additional description that the Lord Jesus Christ was also with the wild beasts.

Mark 1:14 Now after that John was put in prison, Jesus came into Galilee, preaching the gospel of the kingdom of God,

Mark 1:15 And saying, The time is fulfilled, and the kingdom of God is at hand: repent ye, and believe the gospel.

John the Baptist was later put to jail because he preached against the adultery of the governor, Herod. 

When the preacher agrees with the word of God to go against sins, affliction and persecution will come!

We will learn about this in chapter six.

Verse 14 and 15 lead us to another biblical term called the “Kingdom of God.”

Its counterpart is the term called the “Kingdom of Heaven.”

To study the distinction between these two terms in detail, we need a separate class dedicated to them.

For today’s study, we will use the Bible to get the basic definition of these two terms.

When we hear the word, kingdom, we immediately think about one outstanding figure. 

A king who would rule and reign. 

The Kingdom of God and the Kingdom of Heaven both have only one true King.

That King is the Lord Jesus Christ.

Out of my curiosity, I used the program called e-Sword, a computerized Bible study tool, to search for the exact word of “the Kingdom of Heaven.”

This term appears only in the Book of Matthew, with 32 verses mentioned.

When we began our study two weeks ago, we learned that each gospel has a different key theme representing the Lord Jesus Christ.

The Book of Mark, which we are now studying, represents the Lord Jesus Christ as a humble servant.

On the other hand, the Book of Matthew represents Him as the King of the Jews.

Now let us get the Bible definition for the term, the Kingdom of Heaven.

Let us go to [Matthew 11:12].

Matthew 11:12  And from the days of John the Baptist until now the kingdom of heaven suffereth violence, and the violent take it by force.

… the kingdom of heaven suffereth violence, and the violent take it by force.

This is the kingdom promised to the nation of Israel since the time of the Old Testament.

Throughout the Old Testament, we can see one pattern concerning the nation of Israel.

When they obeyed the Lord, they got His blessing, prosperity, and safety.

Sadly, the Jews forfeited it!

They disobeyed the Lord. 

As a result, destruction, war, and oppression came to their land.

God sent the Assyrian, the Babylonian, and the Roman to conquer their land.  

The kingdom was then taken over by the Gentile nations.

Still, the Israelites are God’s chosen people. 

One day, the Lord Jesus Christ will come back. 

He will be a true King to rule over this earthly and physical kingdom.

The Kingdom of Heaven is an earthly, physical, and visible kingdom.

What about the Kingdom of God?

Let us go to [Luke 17:20-21] and [Romans 14:17].

Luke 17:20  And when he was demanded of the Pharisees, when the kingdom of God should come, he answered them and said, The kingdom of God cometh not with observation:

Luke 17:21 Neither shall they say, Lo here! or, lo there! for, behold, the kingdom of God is within you.

Romans 14:17 For the kingdom of God is not meat and drink; but righteousness, and peace, and joy in the Holy Ghost.

What can we observe from these scriptures concerning the description of the Kingdom of God?

…The kingdom of God cometh not with observation.
… the kingdom of God is within you.
…the kingdom of God is not meat and drink.

We can see that the Kingdom of God is spiritual and invisible.

Today, there is only one way to enter into the Kingdom of God.

We must thank God that we have the Bible to tell us how to enter into this kingdom.

Let us go to [John 3:5-7].

John 3:5 Jesus answered, Verily, verily, I say unto thee, Except a man be born of water and of the Spirit, he cannot enter into the kingdom of God.

John 3:6 That which is born of the flesh is flesh; and that which is born of the Spirit is spirit.

John 3:7 Marvel not that I said unto thee, Ye must be born again.

Verse 7 uses the word, must, which refers to an absolute and mandatory requirement.

Today, anyone can enter this Kingdom of God if they trust and believe only on the Lord Jesus Christ as their personal Savior.

The person must be saved to enter this Kingdom of God. 

Let us go back to [Mark 1:15].

Mark 1:15 And saying, The time is fulfilled, and the kingdom of God is at hand: repent ye, and believe the gospel.

The Lord Jesus Christ was correct to say that the Kingdom of God is at hand.

This is because the King himself was present on the earth while He was speaking. 

We will pause it here today.

Next class, we will see the Lord Jesus Christ called the first disciples, casting out an unclean spirit and healing people.

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