A Glimpse of Glory

Immediately after Peter’s confession of Jesus as the Messiah, Jesus began to teach the disciples about his coming death. This would have been a shock for the disciples whose understanding of the Messiah was one-sided – they focused on his kingship and the defeat of his enemies. After Jesus explained that he must be killed and then rise again after three days, Peter once again stood up and speaks first. Peter had the audacity, and foolishness, to rebuke Jesus for talking of his death. Jesus in turn rebuked Peter and revealed the Satanic forces vying for control over those closest to Jesus. 

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Who Do You Say I Am?

Mark begins his gospel by telling us exactly who Jesus is: Jesus the Messiah, the Son of God. As Mark unfolds the story, the identity of Jesus remains a central focus. The pressing question throughout the book is: who will recognize Jesus for who he truly is? 

John the Baptist appears first on the scene and announces that Jesus is the long-awaited Messiah who brings salvation for the people of God. John was given a special insight into who Jesus is, yet he did not see the whole picture and at one point even starts to have doubts that Jesus really is the Messiah. 

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From Called to Glorified

You may be familiar with the “golden chain of salvation” as Paul lays it out in Romans 8:28-30 – foreknown, predestined, called, justified, and glorified. It is a helpful way think about how God actually works out salvation in our lives. Romans 8 is certainly not the only place in Scripture where we find a “chain of salvation”. Another helpful passage is 2 Peter 1:1-11. Peter doesn’t neatly lay out all the steps in one compact verse, but if we spend a bit of time with these verses, we can identify at least six steps. First, take a minute to read the passage for yourself:

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Bringing a Sword to a Spiritual Fight

Mark 14:43-52 

When Jesus came to earth to battle with the forces of evil and put an eternal end to sin and Satan, his choice of weapon is telling. Many in Jesus’ day, his disciples included, were expecting him to wield a lethal weapon and lead a mighty army. 

In his gospel, Mark recounts how Judas the Betrayer came to Jesus to arrest him. As his disciple, Judas had been a close companion of Jesus and knew of his “battle-plan” against evil: Jesus had predicted his death and resurrection as the path to victory. Yet, on that dark night, Judas approached Jesus accompanied by a mob armed with swords and clubs, a clear indication of the type of fight they were anticipating. Continue reading “Bringing a Sword to a Spiritual Fight”

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