Mark 2: Bible Study

 
Written by Iain Greensheilds   

Over the next few weeks we will be engaging in a major study of Mark's Gospel, but we will be doing it a wee bit differently. Each Sunday, the Minister will highlight part of a chapter in the Sermon, but there will be an opportunity for people at home to follow up with the following notes. I hope you find this enriching.

 

Day 1

Begin the week by reading through the whole of Mark chapter 2 - this should not take you long. If you have time, read it through again and note down anything that in particular speaks to you, stands out, or about which you have a question.Take any one, or all, of these incidents and imagine yourself into the situation.

 

 

Day 2

Read Mark 2:1-12

News about Jesus is spreading and here we see a huge crowd around a house that makes it impossible for these men to get their friend to Jesus. Notice the dedication, care and commitment of the friends - what can we learn from them? Notice that they took their friend to Jesus - do we do this in prayer with people we care about who are in great need?

Jesus telling the man first that his sins were forgiven was intended to draw the teachers of the law and the Pharisees into a trap - see verses 8-12

Jesus demonstrates the extent of His power and influence. He has power over illness and the power to forgive sins - such power only belongs ultimately to God - the point He is trying to make and the reason Peter uses this incident.

 

 

Day 3

Read Mark 2:13-17

 

Peter wants to make another statement about Jesus - this time about the people to whom He has come. The crowd and the religious leaders would assume that Jesus would align himself with the religious elite, now that He has demonstrated His power and the extent of His ministry. Peter takes us to the story of Levi [otherwise known as Matthew] and introduces us to one of the most despised people in Jewish society - someone who collaborated with the Romans!

 

  • Think for a moment about the impact of this story on us. Has our life changed so much that we no longer associate with certain types of people? Have we become remote from the very people Jesus indicated ought to be our priority in verse 17?
 

Day 4

Read Mark 2: 18-22

Peter now takes us to a religious discipline that was practiced by the Pharisees. Fasting was often used as a means of heightening self-discipline and also as an indicator of repentance where people prayed and fasted before God. The problem is that the Pharisees had made it into an indicator of spiritual authenticity - a way of them showing that they were better than everyone else.

 

  • How does Jesus turn the tables on the Pharisees?
Always remember that spiritual disciplines such as prayer, Bible reading, fasting are good so long as they do not become an end in themselves.

 

Day 5

Read Mark 2:23-28

We no longer have a day of rest in UK plc.  God indicated the need for a complete break from all work, but the Pharisees had made it an impossible task with hundreds of rules indicating whether or not the Sabbath had been broken - Jesus challenges this by what He says.

 

  • If Sabbath means rest and rest is essential to our well being - are we allowing for a day when we rest from work, relax, recharge our batteries and our relationship with God?