Saturday, February 16, 2008

Mark, chapter 2

1 ¶ And again he entered into Capernaum after some days; and it was noised that he was in the house.

He was doing miracles in Capernaum repeatedly and as in Matthew He says that if these works had been done in Sodom they would have repented, making Capernaum worse than Sodom. If you refuse to repent of being a sinner and receive Christ you are far worse than any homosexual.

“In the house” is a phrase I’ve heard in modern African-American music, particularly rap.

2 And straightway many were gathered together, insomuch that there was no room to receive them, no, not so much as about the door: and he preached the word unto them.
3 And they come unto him, bringing one sick of the palsy, which was borne of four.
4 And when they could not come nigh unto him for the press, they uncovered the roof where he was: and when they had broken it up, they let down the bed wherein the sick of the palsy lay.
5 When Jesus saw their faith, he said unto the sick of the palsy, Son, thy sins be forgiven thee.

You can’t get to God of your own strength. Notice also that the people, the world, are hindering him from getting to Christ. The media will lie to keep you from the truth. Another thing is that salvation is at the feet of Jesus Christ. Finally, salvation is immediate. You get to Christ, recognizing you are a helpless sinner, and He’ll save you immediately. Christ responds to faith.

If a faith healer really has the faith he says he does then he should be able to heal someone regardless of their faith.

Christ healed the body and the soul.

6 But there were certain of the scribes sitting there, and reasoning in their hearts,
7 Why doth this man thus speak blasphemies? who can forgive sins but God only?
8 And immediately when Jesus perceived in his spirit that they so reasoned within themselves, he said unto them, Why reason ye these things in your hearts?

Imagine someone turning to you and saying, “Why are you thinking that way about the preacher right now?”
9 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?

He is showing them who He is by what He did.

10 But that ye may know that the Son of man hath power on earth to forgive sins, (he saith to the sick of the palsy,)
11 I say unto thee, Arise, and take up thy bed, and go thy way into thine house.
12 And immediately he arose, took up the bed, and went forth before them all; insomuch that they were all amazed, and glorified God, saying, We never saw it on this fashion.

He proved that He had the power to forgive sins by having the power to heal miraculously. Can a Roman Catholic priest or an Old Testament priest do either? No, he can’t. We can only judge by the Book but we have no power to do anything about it.

13 ¶ And he went forth again by the sea side; and all the multitude resorted unto him, and he taught them.
14 And as he passed by, he saw Levi the son of Alphaeus sitting at the receipt of custom, and said unto him, Follow me. And he arose and followed him.

According to Matthew and Luke, this is Matthew. This is a government tax collector, who was considered collaborators and corrupt. He drops it all and walks after Christ, who has the power to save anyone.

15 And it came to pass, that, as Jesus sat at meat in his house, many publicans and sinners sat also together with Jesus and his disciples: for there were many, and they followed him.

In the Old Testament people who are trying to live right and honor God are called the righteous and those who are wicked and couldn’t care less are sinners. In the New Testament Christ comes to die for the ungodly, the sinners, and if you consider yourself righteous without Christ you won’t be saved. You won’t see any need for it.

Romans 5:6 For when we were yet without strength, in due time Christ died for the ungodly.

Romans 5:8 But God commendeth his love toward us, in that, while we were yet sinners, Christ died for us.

1Corinthians 15:3 For I delivered unto you first of all that which I also received, how that Christ died for our sins according to the scriptures;

Christ came to die for the very people that the Old Testament condemned. Read this in the Psalms.

Psalm 1:1 ¶ Blessed is the man that walketh not in the counsel of the ungodly, nor standeth in the way of sinners, nor sitteth in the seat of the scornful. 2 But his delight is in the law of the LORD; and in his law doth he meditate day and night. 3 And he shall be like a tree planted by the rivers of water, that bringeth forth his fruit in his season; his leaf also shall not wither; and whatsoever he doeth shall prosper. 4 ¶ The ungodly are not so: but are like the chaff which the wind driveth away.
5 Therefore the ungodly shall not stand in the judgment, nor sinners in the congregation of the righteous. 6 For the LORD knoweth the way of the righteous: but the way of the ungodly shall perish.

The problem with many modern, American Christians is that they have adopted the Old Testament view because they are Biblically illiterate and can’t “rightly divide” the word. They assume that because they dress nice, have nice things, and act in some kind of civil and relatively polite manner, occasionally attending church, saying ‘grace’ over dinner, and not doing really bad stuff that they are righteous. American Christians are amazing in the things they have managed to accomplish without Christ. This is easy to test and prove. Go up to the most righteous person you know, the person who appears to really be a great Christian, unlike myself, and ask them how much during the average day do they commit to prayer, Bible reading, memorization, and study, and how much time do they commit to listening to the radio or watching television.

You’ll find that the more pious seeming the individual the less time or love they have for listening to God through God’s word speaking to their spirit or talking to Him in prayer. While you and I are struggling with our revulsion to our wicked sins and abhorring our flesh for our sinful nature, while we are praying on our knees for light from His word and begging Him to keep us from sin, they are walking around smug and self satisfied, willfully ignorant. Those with communist leanings will insist that the Christian should vote Democrat and those with fascist leanings will insist that a Christian must vote Republican. The one replaces God with the government in a slightly different way than the other. But, either one has still replaced God in their hearts.

Our nation is wicked, from the conservative state worshipping churches with a political flag on their pulpit platforms to the liberal state worshipping churches who want to be “inclusive”. Neither one gives a “tinker’s dam” for Jesus Christ. They have invented a God they worship and ultimately it comes back to the worship of self.

16 And when the scribes and Pharisees saw him eat with publicans and sinners, they said unto his disciples, How is it that he eateth and drinketh with publicans and sinners?
17 When Jesus heard it, he saith unto them, They that are whole have no need of the physician, but they that are sick: I came not to call the righteous, but sinners to repentance.

Here’s Jesus Christ giving His mission, calling sinners to repentance. It isn’t about 1-2-3 repeat after me. There are a lot of people who don’t want to argue and if you say, “do you want to go to Hell”, they’ll say no. If you don’t repent of what you are, you can’t be saved. It isn’t about repenting of an individual sin because you won’t know all of your sins when you come to Christ. You must repent of what you are more than what you’ve done because the problem isn’t what you’ve done, it’s what you are.
18 ¶ And the disciples of John and of the Pharisees used to fast: and they come and say unto him, Why do the disciples of John and of the Pharisees fast, but thy disciples fast not?
19 And Jesus said unto them, Can the children of the bridechamber fast, while the bridegroom is with them? as long as they have the bridegroom with them, they cannot fast.
20 But the days will come, when the bridegroom shall be taken away from them, and then shall they fast in those days.

Here comes a division in the Bible. The children of the bridechamber are not the bride, which is the church. Christ, the bridegroom is going to leave.

John 3:29 He that hath the bride is the bridegroom: but the friend of the bridegroom, which standeth and heareth him, rejoiceth greatly because of the bridegroom’s voice: this my joy therefore is fulfilled.

John the Baptist is the friend of the bridegroom. There are many divisions of people in the Bible that are worthy of study.

Song of Solomon 6:8 There are threescore queens, and fourscore concubines, and virgins without number.

Don’t ask me. I don’t have a clue who the queens are, or the concubines. I do know who the virgins are, Jews in the tribulation, from the text, but I haven’t made the effort to study this yet.

Fasting is for Christians, but has nothing to do with salvation.

2 Corinthians 6:4 But in all things approving ourselves as the ministers of God, in much patience, in afflictions, in necessities, in distresses, 5 In stripes, in imprisonments, in tumults, in labours, in watchings, in fastings;

2Corinthians 11:27 In weariness and painfulness, in watchings often, in hunger and thirst, in fastings often, in cold and nakedness.

Fasting fights against the flesh and afflicts the soul. But, don’t let it become a matter of worshipping your own will. The Christian starts out in self worship using pleasure, moves into worship of Christ, and if he goes far enough will wander into self worship again by his asceticism and separation. Worshipping God genuinely, in the Spirit, is a narrow thing that requires turning neither to the left or right. The libertine, carnal Christian, or unsaved person, seeks to serve his or her own flesh in life and worship with worldly and fleshy music, while the separated fundamentalist seeks to serve his or her own flesh by pride and denial, to prove how close to Christ they are. Both are self serving and deluded fools. Be warned.

21 No man also seweth a piece of new cloth on an old garment: else the new piece that filled it up taketh away from the old, and the rent is made worse.
22 And no man putteth new wine into old bottles: else the new wine doth burst the bottles, and the wine is spilled, and the bottles will be marred: but new wine must be put into new bottles.

In the NEW Testament there is a change. It is not just the continuance of Hebraism. When a Jew gets saved he’s not a “completed Jew”, he’s a Christian. In this dispensation there are unsaved Jews, unsaved Gentiles, and the Church. A Jew who receives Christ needs to repudiate his former religion and come to Christ. Jesus has pointed out that with all the tradition and rules and regulations that they built on the foundations of the Mosaic law they built a house on sand. All political religions, Judaism, Islam, Roman Catholic Christianity, Protestantism, Hinduism, etc. etc. are false religions.

All of the early Christians were Jews. They left their faith. There was a gradual process throughout Acts and they started out as beard wearing, Sabbath observing, pork abstaining Jews and then you get into Paul’s letters you find no mention of going to synagogue or worshipping in the temple.

You don’t take your old religion and add Jesus to it. You discard your old religion and receive Christ. Many fundamentalists retain the things of their former life that they find still acceptable and don’t put everything on the table for Christ to deal with in His way. I know fundamentalists who are still clinging to things like hunting, sports fanaticism, and state worship and yet, proudly proclaim that they aren’t like the homosexuals and abortionists, who have done the same thing, only the latter won’t usually come to Christ because they will put nothing on the table for fear of God removing it.

The modern fundamentalist squeezes through but still retains some baggage which drags him down as he struggles to serve Christ. I have my issues that I have brought with me. They need to be turned from or I will remain a hypocrite. There is nothing wrong with hunting or sports in and of themselves but to cling to them as part of what identifies you as a man is idolatry. Think about it. Of course, there is no excuse for worship of the state. The state is Satan’s operational entity, whether it is the nation-state or the one world government to come.

When you become a Christian you must lay everything on the table and let God deal with it as He will. It is no less than a complete surrender to Christ. Maybe He will let you keep some things but when I see Christians slavishly devoted to television, movies, alcohol, pro-sports, hunting, and flag waving I think I can see that someone has not let go. It is one thing to be patriotic but another entirely to be a statist, one who worships the state and follows through with every idea that a leader proposes, as long as it follows the Roman Catholic line on abortion and homosexual behavior.

We have our battles and our problems because when we come to Christ we don’t make the Bible pre-eminent, we don’t surrender everything about ourselves to Christ, and we aren’t willing to completely let go of our past affections. If you put new wine into old bottles they will burst. I am convicted by what I’m saying here as much as anyone else should be. I have been carrying around my old man on my back and the stinking corpse I’m carrying makes me sick.
23 And it came to pass, that he went through the corn fields on the sabbath day; and his disciples began, as they went, to pluck the ears of corn.
24 And the Pharisees said unto him, Behold, why do they on the sabbath day that which is not lawful?

The Law of Moses did not prohibit one from simply putting something in your mouth. These disciples weren’t working. This is about the oral tradition of the Pharisees.

25 And he said unto them, Have ye never read what David did, when he had need, and was an hungred, he, and they that were with him?
26 How he went into the house of God in the days of Abiathar the high priest, and did eat the shewbread, which is not lawful to eat but for the priests, and gave also to them which were with him?

See 1 Samuel 21 and 22.

27 And he said unto them, The sabbath was made for man, and not man for the sabbath:
28 Therefore the Son of man is Lord also of the sabbath.

The Sabbath gave the Jews a day off from his labor, ordained by God. Here Jesus Christ claims to be the Lord of the Sabbath, therefore God in the flesh.

Exodus 20:8 Remember the sabbath day, to keep it holy. 9 Six days shalt thou labour, and do all thy work: 10 But the seventh day is the sabbath of the LORD thy God: in it thou shalt not do any work, thou, nor thy son, nor thy daughter, thy manservant, nor thy maidservant, nor thy cattle, nor thy stranger that is within thy gates:


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