A New World Is Coming
Lord, You hear both my prayers and my complaints. I love You; still, I sometimes disregard You. I long for You today.
Read MARK 10:32-45
Scripture taken from the Holy Bible, NEW INTERNATIONAL VERSION. Copyright © 1973, 1978, 1984 International Bible Society. All rights reserved throughout the world. Used by permission of International Bible Society.
“In the Gospels, we are presented with a perspective on power so radical and disturbing that few have understood or come to terms with it even today” (Alan Storkey).
Mark works hard to set the scene for each important conversation he records. He works visually, wanting us to catch the story by picturing it. Here he lets us know that the plot is taking a turn toward Jerusalem (32). Jesus, who knows why he is going there and the fate that awaits him, leads the way. Close behind him are the disciples who are described as “astonished.” They have been confused by the new, darker tone of Jesus’ words to them as he spoke of his own suffering and death. Hardly have they had time to ponder this when he sets off, heading resolutely toward confrontation with the Jewish and Roman authorities. They talk animatedly about what Jesus means to achieve. Somewhere behind them in Mark’s picture is a larger crowd, also confused, also following where Jesus leads, and afraid of what is about to happen. There is tension in the air. A cloud of dust rises from the feet of the growing crowd. Only Jesus knows the plan.
Seeing the confusion of the disciples, Jesus explains as plainly as possible the confrontation he is heading toward (33) and how it will end (34). But even this stark description is not plain enough for the disciples. They misunderstand completely, believing that a new government is about to be declared in Israel. They even begin discussing among themselves who should serve in Jesus’ cabinet (37). “Wrong question,” Jesus admonishes them (see v. 38). “Wrong understanding of power and leadership” (see vs. 42-45). There is a revolution about to happen in Jerusalem. There is a change coming, a new kingdom, but it will not be like anything ever seen before (43). The fight is not for a new government; it is for a new world (45).
Read again vs. 43-45. Would you say you have a servant heart? Think of some simple ways in which you can serve others today.
Mighty Lord, empower me to understand the workings of Your Kingdom. May I know what true power is, and what it isn’t. Help me act accordingly as a servant.
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