Tuesday, May 27, 2008

Mark, chapter Ten

Chapter 10

1 ¶ And he arose from thence, and cometh into the coasts of Judaea by the farther side of Jordan: and the people resort unto him again; and, as he was wont, he taught them again.

Jesus Christ is constantly busy. He has no time to lose and yet, He has eternity.

2 And the Pharisees came to him, and asked him, Is it lawful for a man to put away his wife? tempting him.

A Pharisee is tormented by questions about sex. They also want to trip you up. A modern day Pharisee is obsessed about how women dress, how they behave toward their husbands, and whether or not a woman can own a business or lead a country. They apparently don’t know about Deborah or Huldah or Lydia or the good wife of Proverbs 31.

3 And he answered and said unto them, What did Moses command you?
4 And they said, Moses suffered to write a bill of divorcement, and to put her away.
5 And Jesus answered and said unto them, For the hardness of your heart he wrote you this precept.

The Law was given for dirtbags. It was given for murderers and blasphemers among other unsavory characters.

1 Timothy 1:9 Knowing this, that the law is not made for a righteous man, but for the lawless and disobedient, for the ungodly and for sinners, for unholy and profane, for murderers of fathers and murderers of mothers, for manslayers, 10 For whoremongers, for them that defile themselves with mankind, for menstealers, for liars, for perjured persons, and if there be any other thing that is contrary to sound doctrine; 11 According to the glorious gospel of the blessed God, which was committed to my trust.

A saved man today has Christ’s righteousness imputed to Him if he believes, which, of course, if he didn’t believe, he wouldn’t be a saved man. He is not under the Law. The Pharisee’s and Judaizers want to keep putting you back under the Law so the preacher or priest can have control over you. Christ is going to give something that completes the Law and fulfills it.

In the Sermon on the Mount He says “the Law says this….but I say that”. Those who like to quote the Sermon on the Mount tend to be selective readers. What Christ is offering to us in the Church Age and to the Jews in the Tribulation is better than the Law.

6 But from the beginning of the creation God made them male and female.
7 For this cause shall a man leave his father and mother, and cleave to his wife;
8 And they twain shall be one flesh: so then they are no more twain, but one flesh.
9 What therefore God hath joined together, let not man put asunder.

Marriage is designed to be FOR LIFE. Divorce is not part of God’s will. He allowed it because of the hardness of a man’s heart. Don’t unite your flesh with another person of the opposite sex unless you commit yourself that this is forever. Don’t marry someone who thinks differently.

The Jews taught, I am told, that you could kick your wife to the curb if she didn’t cook like you wanted.

10 And in the house his disciples asked him again of the same matter.
11 And he saith unto them, Whosoever shall put away his wife, and marry another, committeth adultery against her.
12 And if a woman shall put away her husband, and be married to another, she committeth adultery.

The more complete passage is found in Matthew and I’ve already explained it there in chapter 19. Here it is clear that if you divorce your wife and marry someone else you commit adultery against her. If a woman puts away her husband and marries someone else she commits adultery. Jesus announces in Matthew that only the spouse’s fornication is an acceptable grounds for divorce.

The Holy Spirit, speaking through Paul, shows that abandonment is another ground that is acceptable.

1 Corinthians 7:13 And the woman which hath an husband that believeth not, and if he be pleased to dwell with her, let her not leave him. 14 For the unbelieving husband is sanctified by the wife, and the unbelieving wife is sanctified by the husband: else were your children unclean; but now are they holy.
15 But if the unbelieving depart, let him depart. A brother or a sister is not under bondage in such cases: but God hath called us to peace.

The fundamentalist assertion that if divorced you can never marry another is dismissed in my commentary on Matthew 19. Read it if you are contentious.

13 ¶ And they brought young children to him, that he should touch them: and his disciples rebuked those that brought them.
14 But when Jesus saw it, he was much displeased, and said unto them, Suffer the little children to come unto me, and forbid them not: for of such is the kingdom of God.
15 Verily I say unto you, Whosoever shall not receive the kingdom of God as a little child, he shall not enter therein.
16 And he took them up in his arms, put his hands upon them, and blessed them.

We have to receive Christ in the kind of trust and acceptance and expectation that a child receives Him. When I was a child there was a point at which I thought my parents could do no wrong. The disillusionment came one day while they were fighting and swearing at each other, screaming and crying. I realized at that point that they were weak, fallible creatures, motivated by selfishness, even in their child rearing. I was to be a piece of pridework for them. Dressing me right, feeding me well, and eventually sending me to college was proof that they were good. It had nothing to do with love for me. In this I rebelled.

But, up to that realization I trusted them like we are to trust Christ.

17 ¶ And when he was gone forth into the way, there came one running, and kneeled to him, and asked him, Good Master, what shall I do that I may inherit eternal life?
18 And Jesus said unto him, Why callest thou me good? there is none good but one, that is, God.

Psalm 38:20 They also that render evil for good are mine adversaries; because I follow the thing that good is.

This must only be God because of this fact.

Psalm 14:3 They are all gone aside, they are all together become filthy: there is none that doeth good, no, not one.

Psalm 53:3 Every one of them is gone back: they are altogether become filthy; there is none that doeth good, no, not one.

19 Thou knowest the commandments, Do not commit adultery, Do not kill, Do not steal, Do not bear false witness, Defraud not, Honour thy father and mother.

Jesus quotes the commandments that have to do with interpersonal relationships. He does not mention the commandments toward God or the one about covetousness.

20 And he answered and said unto him, Master, all these have I observed from my youth.

He took these rules seriously all his life. Paul also took serious these commandments and a bishop must also be blameless, not in that he is sinless but that he purposely tries to obey God.

Philippians 3:6 Concerning zeal, persecuting the church; touching the righteousness which is in the law, blameless.

1Thessalonians 5:23 And the very God of peace sanctify you wholly; and I pray God your whole spirit and soul and body be preserved blameless unto the coming of our Lord Jesus Christ.

1Timothy 3:2 A bishop then must be blameless, the husband of one wife, vigilant, sober, of good behaviour, given to hospitality, apt to teach;

1Timothy 3:10 And let these also first be proved; then let them use the office of a deacon, being found blameless.

1Timothy 5:7 And these things give in charge, that they may be blameless.

Titus 1:6 If any be blameless, the husband of one wife, having faithful children not accused of riot or unruly.

Titus 1:7 For a bishop must be blameless, as the steward of God; not selfwilled, not soon angry, not given to wine, no striker, not given to filthy lucre;

2Peter 3:14 Wherefore, beloved, seeing that ye look for such things, be diligent that ye may be found of him in peace, without spot, and blameless.

Blameless cannot be sinless.

1John 1:8 If we say that we have no sin, we deceive ourselves, and the truth is not in us.

Now, Jesus doesn’t give him our plan of salvation. He is still working with men under the Law. He doesn’t call this young man a liar, either. He acknowledges the truthfulness of his statement.

21 Then Jesus beholding him loved him, and said unto him, One thing thou lackest: go thy way, sell whatsoever thou hast, and give to the poor, and thou shalt have treasure in heaven: and come, take up the cross, and follow me.

Now, under the dispensation of works, and during this apostolic time, Christ tells him to sell ALL of his possessions, give to the poor, and to join in with the apostles, following Christ. This is a gospel of works before the resurrection and the New Testament is in force.
The early church also does this. Jesus gives this command;

Acts 1:8 But ye shall receive power, after that the Holy Ghost is come upon you: and ye shall be witnesses unto me both in Jerusalem, and in all Judaea, and in Samaria, and unto the uttermost part of the earth.

They received the Holy Ghost as stated;
Acts 4:31 And when they had prayed, the place was shaken where they were assembled together; and they were all filled with the Holy Ghost, and they spake the word of God with boldness.

But, they hung around in the little commune they had formed back in Acts 2.

Acts 4:34 Neither was there any among them that lacked: for as many as were possessors of lands or houses sold them, and brought the prices of the things that were sold, 35 And laid them down at the apostles’ feet: and distribution was made unto every man according as he had need.

So, God permitted them to be disbursed through persecution so that they would follow His express orders stated above.

Acts 8:1 ¶ And Saul was consenting unto his death. And at that time there was a great persecution against the church which was at Jerusalem; and they were all scattered abroad throughout the regions of Judaea and Samaria, except the apostles.

Letters are even written to these Jewish followers of Christ.

James 1:1 James, a servant of God and of the Lord Jesus Christ, to the twelve tribes which are scattered abroad, greeting.

And are written from the places they have been scattered.

1Peter 5:13 The church that is at Babylon, elected together with you, saluteth you; and so doth Marcus my son.

So, if God has called you to do something and you are clinging to something that holds you back from obedience, God can allow evil things and people to take away your peace so that you will have no reason not to obey Him.

As Lester Roloff is supposed to have said, “It is easy to live on faith when that is all you have left.” It’s a shame if it has to come to that.

22 And he was sad at that saying, and went away grieved: for he had great possessions.

What Christians have in America is almost always more important than Christ. Obviously, doctrinally, Jesus isn’t walking around here to be followed as a physical leader so the application is spiritual. Doctrinally, they are still Sabbath observing, temple going, pork abstaining, beard wearing JEWS under the LAW.

Whatever a Christian cherishes more than Christ will keep him from following Christ.

23 And Jesus looked round about, and saith unto his disciples, How hardly shall they that have riches enter into the kingdom of God!
24 And the disciples were astonished at his words. But Jesus answereth again, and saith unto them, Children, how hard is it for them that trust in riches to enter into the kingdom of God!
25 It is easier for a camel to go through the eye of a needle, than for a rich man to enter into the kingdom of God.
26 And they were astonished out of measure, saying among themselves, Who then can be saved?
27 And Jesus looking upon them saith, With men it is impossible, but not with God: for with God all things are possible.

This is so clear that only a scholar could confuse it. The eye of a needle is the eye of a needle. It’s impossible to get through it but with God nothing is impossible. We are NOT talking about a small door that a camel has to crawl through after having its burden to be offloaded. Quit trying to impress people with your brilliance and read what it says. There is no difference between the Fundamentalist or the liberal scholar in this. Both love to add to God’s words to elevate their own intellect.

The application here is that you, if you have riches, will trust in those riches, not God.

1 Timothy 6:6 ¶ But godliness with contentment is great gain. 7 For we brought nothing into this world, and it is certain we can carry nothing out. 8 And having food and raiment let us be therewith content.
9 But they that will be rich fall into temptation and a snare, and into many foolish and hurtful lusts, which drown men in destruction and perdition. 10 For the love of money is the root of all evil: which while some coveted after, they have erred from the faith, and pierced themselves through with many sorrows. 11 But thou, O man of God, flee these things; and follow after righteousness, godliness, faith, love, patience, meekness. 12 Fight the good fight of faith, lay hold on eternal life, whereunto thou art also called, and hast professed a good profession before many witnesses.

If you have swallowed the baloney about a “needle gate” then notice that “with men it is impossible”. It is not impossible for the proverbial camel to crawl through the proverbial needle gate. It is a miracle for a rich man to get saved.

28 Then Peter began to say unto him, Lo, we have left all, and have followed thee.

Peter’s looking for a return on what he has done for Christ.

29 And Jesus answered and said, Verily I say unto you, There is no man that hath left house, or brethren, or sisters, or father, or mother, or wife, or children, or lands, for my sake, and the gospel’s,
30 But he shall receive an hundredfold now in this time, houses, and brethren, and sisters, and mothers, and children, and lands, with persecutions; and in the world to come eternal life.

This is so obviously doctrinally not part of this dispensation it isn’t funny. This is about the physical reign of Christ on the physical earth. We, in the Church Age, are not promised riches, power, wealth, or possessions for following Christ. We are promised suffering.

Philippians 3:8 Yea doubtless, and I count all things but loss for the excellency of the knowledge of Christ Jesus my Lord: for whom I have suffered the loss of all things, and do count them but dung, that I may win Christ, 9 ¶ And be found in him, not having mine own righteousness, which is of the law, but that which is through the faith of Christ, the righteousness which is of God by faith: 10 That I may know him, and the power of his resurrection, and the fellowship of his sufferings, being made conformable unto his death; 11 If by any means I might attain unto the resurrection of the dead.

Go back to the 1 Timothy 6 verses I just posted above. There are physical rewards in the millennium for His people. There are few rewards in this age save for that sweet fellowship with your creator that comes with obedience and, perhaps, eventual death for it.

Read the three chapters of Revelation to see what awaits the faithful Christian on this earth. We are not promised earthly wealth and riches and temporal rewards here now. The prosperity gospel put out by so many charismatics is a lie straight from the pit of Hell. Remember, Christ said it is a miracle if a rich man gets saved.

2Timothy 2:12 If we suffer, we shall also reign with him: if we deny him, he also will deny us:

Galatians 2:20 I am crucified with Christ: nevertheless I live; yet not I, but Christ liveth in me: and the life which I now live in the flesh I live by the faith of the Son of God, who loved me, and gave himself for me.

1Corinthians 15:31 I protest by your rejoicing which I have in Christ Jesus our Lord, I die daily.

2Corinthians 12:9 And he said unto me, My grace is sufficient for thee: for my strength is made perfect in weakness. Most gladly therefore will I rather glory in my infirmities, that the power of Christ may rest upon me.

Philippians 3:9 ¶ And be found in him, not having mine own righteousness, which is of the law, but that which is through the faith of Christ, the righteousness which is of God by faith: 10 That I may know him, and the power of his resurrection, and the fellowship of his sufferings, being made conformable unto his death; 11 If by any means I might attain unto the resurrection of the dead.

In any event, I believe verse 30 is a classic example of typology. Who believes, in his right mind, that Christ is promising a hundred mothers to a believer?

31 But many that are first shall be last; and the last first.
32 ¶ And they were in the way going up to Jerusalem; and Jesus went before them: and they were amazed; and as they followed, they were afraid. And he took again the twelve, and began to tell them what things should happen unto him,
33 Saying, Behold, we go up to Jerusalem; and the Son of man shall be delivered unto the chief priests, and unto the scribes; and they shall condemn him to death, and shall deliver him to the Gentiles:

Jesus knew what was going to happen and who was going to do it.

34 And they shall mock him, and shall scourge him, and shall spit upon him, and shall kill him: and the third day he shall rise again.

Psalm 22:7 All they that see me laugh me to scorn: they shoot out the lip, they shake the head, saying,

Isaiah 53:5 But he was wounded for our transgressions, he was bruised for our iniquities: the chastisement of our peace was upon him; and with his stripes we are healed.

Isaiah 50:6 I gave my back to the smiters, and my cheeks to them that plucked off the hair: I hid not my face from shame and spitting.

Read the context from which the following verses are drawn.

Genesis 22:4 Then on the third day Abraham lifted up his eyes, and saw the place afar off.

Genesis 40:20 And it came to pass the third day, which was Pharaoh’s birthday, that he made a feast unto all his servants: and he lifted up the head of the chief butler and of the chief baker among his servants. (See Jesus’ and Judas’ fates here)

Genesis 42:18 And Joseph said unto them the third day, This do, and live; for I fear God:

2Kings 20:8 And Hezekiah said unto Isaiah, What shall be the sign that the LORD will heal me, and that I shall go up into the house of the LORD the third day?

Hosea 6:2 After two days will he revive us: in the third day he will raise us up, and we shall live in his sight.

35 And James and John, the sons of Zebedee, come unto him, saying, Master, we would that thou shouldest do for us whatsoever we shall desire.
36 And he said unto them, What would ye that I should do for you?
37 They said unto him, Grant unto us that we may sit, one on thy right hand, and the other on thy left hand, in thy glory.
38 But Jesus said unto them, Ye know not what ye ask: can ye drink of the cup that I drink of? and be baptized with the baptism that I am baptized with?
39 And they said unto him, We can. And Jesus said unto them, Ye shall indeed drink of the cup that I drink of; and with the baptism that I am baptized withal shall ye be baptized:
40 But to sit on my right hand and on my left hand is not mine to give; but it shall be given to them for whom it is prepared.
41 And when the ten heard it, they began to be much displeased with James and John.

Here is a classic example of how carnal Christians are today. We want to make an exhibition of ourselves, to receive a reward, to be glorified. We don’t really want to share in Christ’s sufferings or to submit every thought to Christ, but we want to be the big man. When I read or hear a preacher talk about seeking rewards in Heaven I am sickened. We are to seek nothing but to glorify and serve Christ. We are to accept whatever comes, even if nothing, as a result. I will be satisfied enough to be in Heaven for eternity. Narcissism, self interest, and excessive egotism are endemic in Christianity, particularly among Pastors and teachers. Sometimes I think that the greatest stumbling block to a revival of the average Christian’s spirit in the Lord is his own Pastor. So much time and effort is spent on Nicolaitanism, elevating the status of the Pastor above the laity, that one would think that the Pastor of the local church stood as a popeling, the vicarious representative of Christ on the earth. This is no different than Roman Catholicism where the Priest represents Christ and is first in apostasy just above the effort of the modern fundamentalist Pastor and Evangelist trying hard to talk people out of their assurance of salvation in order to chalk up some kind of “decision” for Christ, albeit from a “retread”. A “retread” is someone who tries to “get saved” over and over again because they are doing nothing for the Lord and feel guilty about it just as an “aisle athlete” is someone who runs up front to the “altar” after every service to show just how spiritual they are.

As a Baptist, I believe in the priesthood of all believers. Jesus said that He hates Nicolaitans.

With regard to these verses, examine the sufferings of the Jews throughout history, particularly in Hitler’s holocaust, and of the Christian martyrs who were murdered by other Christians in the most inhumane ways possible. They did indeed drink of the cup that Christ drank of. The Great Tribulation, the Time of Jacob’s Trouble, is coming where past events will be completely overshadowed.

Christ drank the cup of God’s fury for us.

Psalms 75:8 For in the hand of the LORD there is a cup, and the wine is red; it is full of mixture; and he poureth out of the same: but the dregs thereof, all the wicked of the earth shall wring them out, and drink them.

Revelation 14:10 The same shall drink of the wine of the wrath of God, which is poured out without mixture into the cup of his indignation; and he shall be tormented with fire and brimstone in the presence of the holy angels, and in the presence of the Lamb:

Revelation 16:19 And the great city was divided into three parts, and the cities of the nations fell: and great Babylon came in remembrance before God, to give unto her the cup of the wine of the fierceness of his wrath.

You will share in it, perhaps.

Phlippians 3:10 That I may know him, and the power of his resurrection, and the fellowship of his sufferings, being made conformable unto his death;

Be glad you are saved, if you are. If not, then do you duty and believe and trust in Christ.

John 3:36 He that believeth on the Son hath everlasting life: and he that believeth not the Son shall not see life; but the wrath of God abideth on him.

42 But Jesus called them to him, and saith unto them, Ye know that they which are accounted to rule over the Gentiles exercise lordship over them; and their great ones exercise authority upon them.
43 But so shall it not be among you: but whosoever will be great among you, shall be your minister:
44 And whosoever of you will be the chiefest, shall be servant of all.
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.

The great Pastors suffered much to lead their flocks. Those egotistical saps who become preachers out of a desire for self glory and self righteousness are just so much chaff. The true leader in a church is a servant first. Just as everyone who graduates from college wants to be offered the presidency of a company without working their way up through the ranks, many who join a church figure they are deserving of some post within the church that makes them look good and seem spiritual.

A minister is not to be a Lord over the flock. He is to serve the flock.

1 Peter 5:1 ¶ The elders which are among you I exhort, who am also an elder, and a witness of the sufferings of Christ, and also a partaker of the glory that shall be revealed: 2 Feed the flock of God which is among you, taking the oversight thereof, not by constraint, but willingly; not for filthy lucre, but of a ready mind; 3 Neither as being lords over God’s heritage, but being ensamples to the flock. 4 And when the chief Shepherd shall appear, ye shall receive a crown of glory that fadeth not away.

If any man be contentious about the meaning of an elder referring not to a preacher or pastor then notice that in the first verses of the second and third letter of John, he refers to himself as the elder. See above that Peter calls himself an elder. Any of the senior men of the church are elders, including the Pastor and Deacons.

Be an example, be a servant, but don’t try to be a king over the flock. That is Nicolaitanism.

As for the ransom paid, the “fathers” of modern Bible versions, Westcott and Hort, believed that the ransom was paid to Satan, which is blasphemy. These reprobates apparently could not read.

Exodus 30:12 When thou takest the sum of the children of Israel after their number, then shall they give every man a ransom for his soul unto the LORD, when thou numberest them; that there be no plague among them, when thou numberest them.

Jesus’ life is the only ransom sufficient for our sins, for those who have received Him.

46 ¶ And they came to Jericho: and as he went out of Jericho with his disciples and a great number of people, blind Bartimaeus, the son of Timaeus, sat by the highway side begging.

Here is a picture of the sinner getting saved. This is Jesus’ last time in Jericho. This is Bartimaeus’ last chance. Is it yours? He is blind, like we were, sitting by the highway, begging, like us. We want peace, we want healing, we want to have the pain in our soul alleviated.

47 And when he heard that it was Jesus of Nazareth, he began to cry out, and say, Jesus, thou Son of David, have mercy on me.
48 And many charged him that he should hold his peace: but he cried the more a great deal, Thou Son of David, have mercy on me.

Many of our friends and family, particularly those who are nominal Christians, will try to dissuade us from receiving Christ, lest we become, in their mind, fanatics.

49 And Jesus stood still, and commanded him to be called. And they call the blind man, saying unto him, Be of good comfort, rise; he calleth thee.

Thank God, Jesus stood still when you cried out for salvation. Here is the God of the universe stopping what He was doing for some beggar on the side of the road. When someone we think of as great stops to acknowledge our needs or just to acknowledge us we are amazed. Here is our Creator stopping for one blind man.

50 And he, casting away his garment, rose, and came to Jesus.

Here is a picture of salvation as you cast away your dirty rags of self-righteousness for Christ.

Isaiah 64:6 But we are all as an unclean thing, and all our righteousnesses are as filthy rags; and we all do fade as a leaf; and our iniquities, like the wind, have taken us away.

You cast things away when you come to Jesus Christ.

Colossians 3:8 ¶ But now ye also put off all these; anger, wrath, malice, blasphemy, filthy communication out of your mouth. 9 Lie not one to another, seeing that ye have put off the old man with his deeds; 10 And have put on the new man, which is renewed in knowledge after the image of him that created him:

51 And Jesus answered and said unto him, What wilt thou that I should do unto thee? The blind man said unto him, Lord, that I might receive my sight.
52 And Jesus said unto him, Go thy way; thy faith hath made thee whole. And immediately he received his sight, and followed Jesus in the way.

Salvation is not a process. It’s immediate and performed completely by Christ in response to your belief that He can and will save you. This is why you can’t lose it. You did nothing to earn it but to cry out.

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