Mark 11:17 This Isn’t Profane

Mark 11:17 (KJV)
And he taught, saying unto them, Is it not written, My house shall be called of all nations the house of prayer? but ye have made it a den of thieves.

Every passage of the Bible has an immediate interpretation that impacts the original audience and perhaps a number of applications that affect the modern believer. The immediate interpretation is that the priests had contrived a scheme whereby they (and the Temple) could profit from the well-meaning intentions and, in some cases, binding obligations of the people to bring sacrifices to God at the Temple.

By taking what was clearly Biblical and twisting things in ever so slight of ways, they had developed a system where the people, who biblically were able to convert there sacrifice into money for sake of traveling convenience, could then purchase a sacrificial animal at the Temple. The catch was they had to purchase that animal with “sanctified” money. “For their convenience” the Temple priests would even exchange their money for the sanctified currency. Of course there was a fee. A modern application would be to play on a congregation’s sincere motive to worship the Lord and perceived obligations associated with worship for profit and gain

Some modern Christians have misunderstood this text to mean that it is unscriptural to sell books, music or sermon CD’s[1] at church. This is not the intention of the passage. It is reasonable that materials that help the believer to grow in grace be offered at the church house. It is also reasonable to expect that the church be compensated fairly for providing those materials. What would not be reasonable would be to somehow compel people to purchase them for exorbitant prices.

[1] Or other digital formats

To my readers:
I would love to hear from you. Leave comments below.

For this and more than 3000 earlier Daily Visits with God visit Marvin McKenzie’s blogger page. There you will find daily visits going back to 2006.

If you have been blessed by this blog, please subscribe to my feed and share it with others

Mark 11:17 This Isn’t Profane

Please consider helping our church’s teen department by signing up for cash back shopping at Bible Baptist Church Fundraiser. This program has three levels of participation, the first being completely free.

Mark 10:1 Jesus Taught Them – Again

Mark 10:1 (KJV)
And when he had called unto him his twelve disciples, he gave them power against unclean spirits, to cast them out, and to heal all manner of sickness and all manner of disease.

Here is a picture of the most common of Christian experiences, the people gathered around to hear Christ again and Jesus taught them again.

Notice the word “wont.” Not won’t, wont. It means, “used to” or “accustomed to.” Jesus was used to the people resorting to Him and He was used to teaching them when they came.

For two thousand years now people have gathered together in churches and for two thousand years Jesus has faithfully taught them. Some of them have rejected the lessons. Some have:

  • Ridiculed
  • Mocked and
  • Attacked

those lessons. But some have heard and embraced those lessons.

Jesus has taught them through preachers He has called and equipped. Some of them have been missionaries, planting new churches. Some of them have been itinerant preachers, coming along to support and help the pastors and some of them have been pastors, faithfully laboring to feed the flock of God, but it has all been of the Lord.

Jesus said, Matthew 18:20 For where two or three are gathered together in my name, there am I in the midst of them.

People gather unto Him and Jesus teaches them.

To my readers:
I would love to hear from you. Leave comments below.

For this and more than 3000 earlier Daily Visits with God visit Marvin McKenzie’s blogger page. There you will find daily visits going back to 2006.

If you have been blessed by this blog, please subscribe to my feed and share it with others

Mark 10:1 Jesus Taught Them – Again

Please consider helping our church’s teen department by signing up for cash back shopping at Bible Baptist Church Fundraiser. This program has three levels of participation, the first being completely free.

Mark 9:28-29 The Source of that Power

Mark 9:28-29 (KJV)
And when he was come into the house, his disciples asked him privately, Why could not we cast him out?
And he said unto them, This kind can come forth by nothing, but by prayer and fasting.

People get themselves worked up so easily.

Jesus returned from the Mount of Transfiguration to find the multitudes stirred. A man whose child was possessed by devils had approached His disciples asking for deliverance. They were unable to help and people gathered to witness their weakness. There were:

  • Disciples there,
  • Scribes there and
  • Common people there

Jesus cast out the devil and restored health to the child. His disciples were, I am sure, humbled by the experience. Later, when they were alone with the Lord they asked why they could not cast out this devil. His answer was, “This kind can come forth by nothing, but by prayer and fasting.”

I noticed that He didn’t have to fast and pray. I noticed that this was not any more difficult for Him than any other miracle He performed.

The disciples had done some amazing things and would do yet more. But they could:

  • Heal the sick
  • Cast out devils and
  • Preach the Word of God

only when empowered by God and only in the measure of that power. When extreme cases came about they had to seek extreme measures of God’s grace.

Jesus, in contrast, is the source of that power. He needed not to find some extra source of ability because He is the inexhaustible source, not only for Himself but also for His disciples.

 

To my readers:
I would love to hear from you. Leave comments below.

For this and more than 3000 earlier Daily Visits with God visit Marvin McKenzie’s blogger page. There you will find daily visits going back to 2006.

If you have been blessed by this blog, please subscribe to my feed and share it with others

Mark 9:28-29 The Source of that Power

Please consider helping our church’s teen department by signing up for cash back shopping at Bible Baptist Church Fundraiser. This program has three levels of participation, the first being completely free.

Mark 8:17-18 A Cure for the Hardened Heart

Mark 8:17-18 (KJV)
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?
Having eyes, see ye not? and having ears, hear ye not? and do ye not remember?

It is one thing that Pharaoh would be so hardened of heart as to refuse God’s urging to, “Let my people go.” It is understandable, though not excusable that Israel would have turned hard through generations of the false teaching of the Pharisees. But even Christ was grieved that His disciples, these twelve closest of His followers, would have hearts hardened to His truths.

That these men could have eyes that didn’t see, ears that didn’t hear and a heart that is hardened offers a strong warning to us. The same may true in us and we might not know it. I think the problem happens whenever we assume it won’t happen to us. Our hearts grow hard and our senses grow dim whenever we take them for granted.

This suggests the cure, and Christ lays the responsibility for the cure upon His disciples. It is:

  • An humble awareness of this problem
  • An active remembrance of Christ’s previous lessons to us and then
  • An acute attention to the lesson Christ currently has before us.

Alexander MacLaren writes of this passage, “We are here in Christ’s school, and it depends upon the place in the class that we take here where we shall be put at what schoolboys call the ‘next remove.’ If here we have indeed ‘learned of Him the truth as it is in Jesus,’ we shall be put up into the top classes yonder, and get larger and more blessed lessons in the Father’s house above.”

 

To my readers:
I would love to hear from you. Leave comments below.

For this and more than 3000 earlier Daily Visits with God visit Marvin McKenzie’s blogger page. There you will find daily visits going back to 2006.

If you have been blessed by this blog, please subscribe to my feed and share it with others

Mark 8:17-18 A Cure for the Hardened Heart

Please consider helping our church’s teen department by signing up for cash back shopping at Bible Baptist Church Fundraiser. This program has three levels of participation, the first being completely free.

Mark 7:5 Teaching Moment

Mark 7:5 (KJV)
Then the Pharisees and scribes asked him, Why walk not thy disciples according to the tradition of the elders, but eat bread with unwashen hands?

The tenor of Jesus ‘ response tells me that the question asked of Him was not sincere. They weren’t looking for an answer; they were looking for something to accuse Christ of. What I notice is that Jesus turned the would-be attack into a teaching moment. When He got His disciples together later, they honestly asked and He legitimately answered the meaning of His conversation with the Pharisees and scribes.

That’s a good lesson to learn from. Given the climate of our day toward Christianity, it seems obvious that any Christian who serves the Lord will attract some negative attention. Someone isn’t going to like what we are doing. Those moments of negative attention do not have to be negative moments. The trying of our faith will be beneficial for us. The Bible assures us of this. How we respond during the trial can be a teaching moment and beneficial to others if we make it so.

Don’t react negatively to negative attention. Use the opportunity to grow in faith and to teach those who ask you about it.

 

To my readers:
I would love to hear from you. Leave comments below.

For this and more than 3000 earlier Daily Visits with God visit Marvin McKenzie’s blogger page. There you will find daily visits going back to 2006.

If you have been blessed by this blog, please subscribe to my feed and share it with others

Mark 7:5 Teaching Moment

Please consider helping our church’s teen department by signing up for cash back shopping at Bible Baptist Church Fundraiser. This program has three levels of participation, the first being completely free.

Mark 6:5 What God Cannot Do

Mark 6:5 (KJV)
And he could there do no mighty work, save that he laid his hands upon a few sick folk, and healed them.

The question to be asked is, what does it mean that, “He could there do no mighty work”? Is it possible that the power of the Lord was of such a nature that the unbelief of the people robbed Christ of it? Not at all!

I have a friend who has made a policy that any requests made of him immediately after a church service, while he is greeting the congregation, is an automatic “No.” It’s just too difficult to process requests in that moment so his policy is that, should his kids or anyone else ask him for something at that moment, the answer is, “No.” Suppose one of his children then comes to him and asks if they can all go out for ice cream. My friend loves ice cream and might enjoy ice cream himself. However, because his child has asked in a moment when he knew his dad’s policy was to answer, “No” to all requests made in that moment, it is inappropriate for him to say, “Yes.” He cannot say, “Yes” even if he would like to because it would mean breaking his own policy.

Jesus as God has and had the power to do whatsoever pleased Him. However the unbelief of the people rendered it inappropriate for him to do what would have pleased Him. God is no less powerful when He chooses not to do what He has before determined He would not do.

To my readers:
I would love to hear from you. Leave comments below.

For this and more than 3000 earlier Daily Visits with God visit Marvin McKenzie’s blogger page. There you will find daily visits going back to 2006.

If you have been blessed by this blog, please subscribe to my feed and share it with others

Mark 6:5 What God Cannot Do

Please consider helping our church’s teen department by signing up for cash back shopping at Bible Baptist Church Fundraiser. This program has three levels of participation, the first being completely free.

Mark 5:30 He Is Aware

Mark 5:30 (KJV)
And Jesus, immediately knowing in himself that virtue had gone out of him, turned him about in the press, and said, Who touched my clothes?

The lesson of this miracle speaks to the divine nature of Christ’s Person. The Apostles were able to do miracles of healing, but only in the name of Jesus and in some cases only through prayer and fasting. Jesus is so essentially God that healing happened even when He was apparently occupied in other matters.

I say apparently because I believe Christ was fully aware of:

  • The woman
  • Her intent, and
  • His healing of her

He asked, “Who touched me?” to draw out a confession from her. It was not to learn something unknown by Him.

This miracle is a testament to His being Deity. Nothing happens that leaves God surprised. Everything that happens, whether or not we are aware that He is aware, happens through His sovereign power.

 

To my readers:
I would love to hear from you. Leave comments below.

For this and more than 3000 earlier Daily Visits with God visit Marvin McKenzie’s blogger page. There you will find daily visits going back to 2006.

If you have been blessed by this blog, please subscribe to my feed and share it with others

Mark 5:30 He Is Aware

Please consider helping our church’s teen department by signing up for cash back shopping at Bible Baptist Church Fundraiser. This program has three levels of participation, the first being completely free.

Mark 3:4-5 Guarding Their Hardening

Mark 3:4-5 (KJV)
And he saith unto them, Is it lawful to do good on the sabbath days, or to do evil? to save life, or to kill? But they held their peace.
And when he had looked round about on them with anger, being grieved for the hardness of their hearts, he saith unto the man, Stretch forth thine hand. And he stretched it out: and his hand was restored whole as the other.

When Jesus engaged these Jews with the Word of God, rather than answering Him or even responding to Him, they held their peace. The next verse tells us why; they had hard hearts.

This sort of hardness is often observable in people. When those who disagree with a particular thing refuse to communicate with the ones with whom they disagree they often resort instead to silence. Sometimes this is a sullen silence, moody and irritable. Sometimes it is a covert silence, watching, fact gathering, waiting for the perfect moment to pounce.

The hardened heart cannot engage in genuine conservation because to do so opens at least three possibilities

  • It may expose the weaknesses of their view
  • It may include unintended persons, less hardened into the conversation
  • It may introduce them to the possibility that they are wrong and need to change

Their silence protects their hardness.

To my readers:
I would love to hear from you. Leave comments below.

For this and more than 3000 earlier Daily Visits with God visit Marvin McKenzie’s blogger page. There you will find daily visits going back to 2006.

If you have been blessed by this blog, please subscribe to my feed and share it with others

Mark 3:4-5 Guarding Their Hardening

Please consider helping our church’s teen department by signing up for cash back shopping at Bible Baptist Church Fundraiser. This program has three levels of participation, the first being completely free.

Mark 2:9 The One Thing God Sees As Important

Mark 2:9 (KJV)
Whether is it easier to say to the sick of the palsy, Thy sins be forgiven thee; or to say, Arise, and take up thy bed, and walk?

It is a mistake to see every miracle and message of Christ as directly applying to salvation. Calvinists seem to do this and, in doing so, come up with some pretty bad doctrine. Using, for instance, the raising of Lazarus as a picture of salvation, the Calvinist claims that the unsaved is corpse like dead, unable even to respond to Jesus unless He gives them life first. Thus, they put regeneration before praying for salvation, something they agree the newly saved must do.

While mistakes like that can be made, there is no mistaking the lessons to be gained from this miracle. Jesus impressed those lessons into the account by saying to the crippled man first of all, “Thy sins be forgiven.” He could easily have just said, “Take up thy bed.” But had Jesus said that His audience would miss the point. He healed the man so we could know He has power on earth to forgive sins.

We come up with all sorts of things we deem to be important.

  • Health
  • Finances
  • Family
  • Peace
  • Etc

I believe there is just one thing God sees as ultimately important; that our sins be forgiven.

 

To my readers:
I would love to hear from you. Leave comments below.

For this and more than 3000 earlier Daily Visits with God visit Marvin McKenzie’s blogger page. There you will find daily visits going back to 2006.

If you have been blessed by this blog, please subscribe to my feed and share it with others

Mark 2:9 The One Thing God Sees As Important

Please consider helping our church’s teen department by signing up for cash back shopping at Bible Baptist Church Fundraiser. This program has three levels of participation, the first being completely free.

Mark 1:8 What Is Baptism with the Holy Ghost?

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

One time, when I was in Bible College, my pastor brought a message on a Wednesday night on the one baptism in the Bible (he referred to water baptism). The next day, as I remember it, I stepped into the first class of the day, Life of Christ, where the professor gave us the three baptisms found in the Bible. I kid you not, the very next class, Personal Evangelism, the teacher gave us a printed handout of the seven baptisms found in the Bible. I was flabbergasted. I blurted out before the whole class, “I have learned something since coming to this college; I don’t know anything about the Bible.” Teacher responded, “Great that’s the first thing we wanted to teach you.” I then said, “I have also learned that none of you know anything about the Bible either!”

He offered me a job on staff at his church.

I am of the position that there is only one Scriptural baptism in the Bible, water baptism:

  • Of a saved person
  • By immersion
  • As a memorial of the gospel
  • Under authority of a duly established Baptist church

I do however recognize that the term is found in the Bible referencing something other than water baptism and I believe each of those references must be understood in light of this passage. John the Baptist was sent from God with unquestioned authority to baptize. Every one of the twelve was baptized of Him. Jesus Himself submitted to John’s baptism. Later we learn that God is glorified through submission to the same.

So what is the baptism with the Holy Ghost John mentions here? John the Baptist simply took his audience from where they were to where Jesus is. Scriptural baptism is water baptism. He uses that baptism (the word means immersion) to point to the work of Jesus to immerse or envelop and seal the saved with the Holy Spirit until the day of our presentation before God in heaven. It is not a contrast, the baptism of John versus the baptism of Jesus, it is a not even a comparison of the one alongside the other, it is an object lesson meant to capture the minds of the hearer to one subject and then to take them from that subject to another the teacher wants them to learn.

To my readers:
I would love to hear from you. Leave comments below.

For this and more than 3000 earlier Daily Visits with God visit Marvin McKenzie’s blogger page. There you will find daily visits going back to 2006.

If you have been blessed by this blog, please subscribe to my feed and share it with others

Mark 1:8 What Is Baptism with the Holy Ghost?

Please consider helping our church’s teen department by signing up for cash back shopping at Bible Baptist Church Fundraiser. This program has three levels of participation, the first being completely free.