Gleans from Monday Bible Study with Pastor (Dr) W.F Kumuyi.
DLBC Old Isolo
2nd December 2019
Study 35 – CHRIST’S PERPETUAL INSTRUCTION FOR HEAVEN-WARD PILGRIMS
Text – Mark 9:30-41
“But they held their peace: for by the way they had disputed among themselves, who should be the greatest.” (Mark 9:34). The Lord Jesus Christ had been speaking to his disciples about His betrayal, death, burial and that after the third day He would rise again. They did not think about all that would happen to Christ, but about themselves; who should be the greatest among them.
This passage is clearly divided into three parts. The first part talks about how Jesus Christ taught and instructed His own disciples, and showed them what would happen to Him, and the glory and power of God that would be manifested when He rose again. The second part talked about how they argued among themselves on who should be the greatest, recognized most, and then He instructed them on the need to be humble. The third part talked about someone who used the name of Jesus to cast out devils and as he was not one of them, they forbad him. But Jesus told them not to stop him, for He needed more people to exalt and use His name because the harvest was great, and the twelve disciples were not enough to reap in the harvest.
We are strangers and pilgrims in this world on our way to Heaven, and the Lord wants us to concentrate on our destination, “In my Father’s house are many mansions: if it were not so, I would have told you. I go to prepare a place for you. And if I go and prepare a place for you, I will come again, and receive you unto myself; that where I am, there ye may be also” (John 14:2-3). This must be our focus and concentration at whatever situation we find ourselves as heaven-bound pilgrims. We need to listen to the timeless instruction that Jesus gave to His disciples as they are for us today also. Pray you will be a true and transformed disciple, and you will be on your way to heaven in Jesus’ name.
Point 1. THE COSTLY IGNORANCE OF HIS STEADFAST FOLLOWERS
Mark 9:30-32; 8:31; Matthew 20:18-19,28; Luke 9:44,45; 18:31-34; Acts 3:13-17; Romans 10:3,9,10
These disciples were steadfast and committed followers of the Lord Jesus Christ. They followed Him consistently and constantly from the moment they gave their lives to Him, yet they had ignorance that could cost them their very lives and destiny in eternity. “And they departed thence, and passed through Galilee; and he would not that any man should know it” (Mark 9:30). Jesus did not want to be mobbed so He told His disciples not to tell anyone of their movement to the next station. “For he taught his disciples, and said unto them, The Son of man is delivered into the hands of men, and they shall kill him; and after that he is killed, he shall rise the third day. But they understood not that saying, and were afraid to ask him” (Mark 9:31-32). They were ignorant of the necessity of His death, the purpose of His first coming, betrayal, death, burial and His resurrection even though He had told them a number of times. They did not understand and were afraid to ask Him, yet this was the most important thing they ought to know: the necessity of His death, the victory that we will have when He rose from the dead the third day. They asked Him other questions that were less important, but this question of eternal value for the whole world, they did not understand, and would not ask. He had told them this was the way to eternal life. “And he began to teach them, that the Son of man must suffer many things, and be rejected of the elders, and of the chief priests, and scribes, and be killed, and after three days rise again” (Mark 8:31). This had been decided from all eternity; it was the Will of the Father as the only way to get us saved and have eternal life. They were only thinking about His death and not of His resurrection that would give justification, salvation, eternal life, but didn’t understand and were afraid to ask. I pray that serious-minded and heaven-bound people in the Church who have challenges and have serious questions will ask questions that are beneficial to the whole church, will transform lives and lead to church growth. “Behold, we go up to Jerusalem; and the Son of man shall be betrayed unto the chief priests and unto the scribes, and they shall condemn him to death, And shall deliver him to the Gentiles to mock, and to scourge, and to crucify him: and the third day he shall rise again” (Matthew 20:18-19). Christ repeated the same thing here. Why would Jesus die and be raised up the third day? When God, Christ, the Holy Spirit and the Scripture repeats something over and over, that thing must be very important, and it is good to ask questions if you don’t understand. When you do, a final solution will come. The purpose of Christ’s death: “Even as the Son of man came not to be ministered unto, but to minister, and to give his life a ransom for many” (Matthew 20:28). It was to cleanse, save and change lives, to bring us out of darkness into His marvellous light that Christ died and if you’re not in the light yet you will come into light in Jesus’ name. He repeated the reason for His death so it could sink deep into their ears, yet His steadfast followers who left all behind to follow Him, did not understand and would not ask. Ask questions, especially about what relate to our salvation, sanctification and getting to heaven. We will not be ignorant. “Then he took unto him the twelve, and said unto them, Behold, we go up to Jerusalem, and all things that are written by the prophets concerning the Son of man shall be accomplished” (Luke 18:31). The death of Christ was not an afterthought; God the Father had thought about it and revealed it, the prophets of the Old Testament had spoken about it; even before the foundation of the world the Father had spoken to the Son that He would be die for the sins of humanity (Revelations 13:8), and at the time of the Fall it was revealed. For you as a believer, all things written concerning you shall be accomplished. Nothing will happen by accident and take you by surprise. All things are foreknown by the Almighty God, and you will discover the way of escape and have victory which the Lord had ordained. If however you are anxious, fret and are grumbling about something that happens, you will not see that way of escape out of that problem. But if you understand that, “…all things work together for good to them that love God, to them who are the called according to his purpose”, as it happened to Christ that all things that were written happened, and you are not surprised at what is happening to you, but know they are just being accomplished according as the Father had ordained, you will get through and move on. Nothing will jolt, surprise or disorganize your life in Jesus’ name. That was why Jesus was relaxed when all those things happened to Him during His sufferings. But Jesus never talked about the death without talking about the outcome. Never talk about your problem, without talking about the solution to that problem. No suffering without solution. Jesus will be the final, full, perfect and permanent solution to all your problems at this coming Retreat in Jesus’ name. “And they understood none of these things: and this saying was hid from them, neither knew they the things which were spoken” (Luke 18:34). All of them did not understand these things even Peter, James and John despite being with Him at the mount of Transfiguration. But you will understand. Resurrection followed His death; solution will always follow problems in in life. “And his name through faith in his name hath made this man strong, whom ye see and know: yea, the faith which is by him hath given him this perfect soundness in the presence of you all. And now brethren, I wot that through ignorance ye did it, as did also your rulers.” (Acts 3:16-17). Here Peter realised that the death and resurrection of Christ was not in vain. It was through faith in His Name, He who died and rose from the dead, that gave the man soundness of health. The Jewish rulers killed Jesus through ignorance. We will not be ignorant but will value His death and resurrection and uphold everything that Jesus died to give us. “For they being ignorant of God’s righteousness, and going about to establish their own righteousness, have not submitted themselves unto the righteousness of God” (Romans 10:3). Those Jews and the disciples were ignorant that our righteousness was only possible through the death, burial and resurrection of Christ. That ignorance has been taken away from our hearts, and now we know that salvation comes because Jesus died and rose again. Salvation and eternal life come to everyone by His grace, and He will keep in that salvation in Jesus’ name.