The Person Of God’s Servant

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The Person Of God’s Servant

"He Is The Christ"

Book of Mark Chapter 8:22-38

Last week when we left Jesus, He had presented this question to the disciples:

Mar 8:21  And he said unto them, How is it that ye do not understand?

Today we are going to find out what they thought.

The word "Christ" comes from the Greek word "Christos" which means "anointed" as the "Anointed One of God".

In context Peter said that Jesus was the "Anointed One" of God or the "Messiah"!

Although Abraham lived 2000 years before Jesus Christ was born of the virgin Mary, Jesus had these words for the Jews:

Joh 8:58  Jesus said unto them, Verily, verily, I say unto you, Before Abraham was, I am.

The Lord had told Moses these words:

Exo 3:14  And God said unto Moses, I AM THAT I AM: and he said, Thus shalt thou say unto the children of Israel, I AM hath sent me unto you.

The Lord went on to say this:

Exo 6:3  And I appeared unto Abraham, unto Isaac, and unto Jacob, by the name of God Almighty, but by my name JEHOVAH was I not known to them.

The "One" that was known to the Jews as "Jehovah" is the same "One" we know of as Jesus the "Christ"!

Jehovah means the "self existing One" or the "Eternal One".

This name was so sacred to the Jews that it was never pronounced except by the High Priest and then only one the day of "Atonement"!

Now let’s remember the verse we ended on last week:

Mar 8:21  And he said unto them, How is it that ye do not understand?

Let’s begin:

*****Mar 8:22  And he cometh to Bethsaida; and they bring a blind man unto him, and besought him to touch him.

We can believe that Mark just happened to have this passage next by accident but we know that all scripture is inspired by the Holy Ghost:

2Ti 3:16  All scripture is given by inspiration of God, and is profitable for doctrine, for reproof, for correction, for instruction in righteousness:
2Ti 3:17  That the man of God may be perfect, throughly furnished unto all good works.

In other words "How is it you do not understand" is about to become "Why are you so blind that you cannot see this"!

We absolutely must have a clear understanding of just who the Lord Jesus truly was!

That’s why it is called "Faith"!

Heb 11:6  But without faith it is impossible to please him: for he that cometh to God must believe that he is, and that he is a rewarder of them that diligently seek him.

Now it seems that everyone that came to Jesus this day had already made up their own mind how they should be healed, they wanted Jesus to "touch" them.

But Jesus, as God, will do things His Way because it is His Way that works and there is always a lesson in what Our Savior does!

*****Mar 8:23  And he took the blind man by the hand, and led him out of the town; and when he had spit on his eyes, and put his hands upon him, he asked him if he saw ought.

The Lord Jesus Christ will always honor "Faith" but when we mix that "faith" with weakness it can cause some problems.

But the Lord must also always honor "faith" because this is His "Promise"!

Those that have "faith" will always be able to see spiritually and sometimes even physically.

BUT, those that require a sign or a certain way, or a certain touch will not see clearly what Jesus is about!

We harm our own selves when we make demands of Our Savior!

The Lord will always do things His own way, God does not need our advice in order to heal us or to save us!

It’s God’s plan and we must become a part of His plan!

*****Mar 8:24  And he looked up, and said, I see men as trees, walking.

Now instead of just seeing a blind man, lost in his own ways, let’s just imagine a disciple of God who just does not have a clear understanding of the "Gospel" as "why do you not yet understand".

1.) We must first come to Jesus.

Joh 14:6  Jesus saith unto him, I am the way, the truth, and the life: no man cometh unto the Father, but by me.

2.) This must be a personal relationship. (Jesus led this man alone out of town)

Rom 10:13  For whosoever shall call upon the name of the Lord shall be saved.

3.) To spit on someone brought reproach and shame, but we must come to Jesus, unashamed of Him.

Luk 9:26  For whosoever shall be ashamed of me and of my words, of him shall the Son of man be ashamed, when he shall come in his own glory, and in his Father’s, and of the holy angels.

After all we are no better than Our Lord:

Isa 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".

This is part of taking up our own cross which we will see shortly.

4.)  Then comes the first stage of salvation.

Do we see clearly?

This once blind man did not yet see clearly.

In fact not one of the 12 chosen disciples were able to see clearly!

They did not yet understand just who Christ Jesus truly was!

The very moment we are saved, we are only one step from where we were.

We must then grow in Christ Jesus!

1Pe 1:2  Elect according to the foreknowledge of God the Father, [through sanctification of the Spirit, unto obedience] and sprinkling of the blood of Jesus Christ: Grace unto you, and peace, be multiplied.

This sanctification takes some time, to some, more than others!

Thank goodness, God is still working on me!

*****Mar 8:25  After that he put his hands again upon his eyes, and made him look up: and he was restored, and saw every man clearly.

This was a Gentile, who had been led to the Lord by others that cared enough for him to do this.

This man was so blind to the things of God that he would have never found Jesus alone!

It was those that had brought him that had petitioned the Lord for this healing!

The Bible teaches us:

Jas 5:13  Is any among you afflicted? let him pray. Is any merry? let him sing psalms.
Jas 5:14  Is any sick among you? let him call for the elders of the church; and let them pray over him, anointing him with oil in the name of the Lord:
Jas 5:15  And the prayer of faith shall save the sick, and the Lord shall raise him up; and if he have committed sins, they shall be forgiven him.

How does he now see clearly?

Php 1:6  Being confident of this very thing, that he which hath begun a good work in you will perform it until the day of Jesus Christ:

There will never be a day until we join the Lord in the rapture, that we will not need Him:

Heb 12:2  Looking unto Jesus "the author and finisher" of our faith; who for the joy that was set before him endured the cross, despising the shame, and is set down at the right hand of the throne of God.

These are some things we must also learn and these are some of the things that these 12 chosen of Jesus did not yet understand.

*****Mar 8:26  And he sent him away to his house, saying, Neither go into the town, nor tell it to any in the town.

Jesus had said all that He had to say to those of Bethsaida, there had not been much faith there and there was no need for this once blind to go tell them how he was healed.

They refused to believe and repent!

Mat 11:21  Woe unto thee, Chorazin! woe unto thee, Bethsaida! for if the mighty works, which were done in you, had been done in Tyre and Sidon, they would have repented long ago in sackcloth and ashes.

We will see shortly that Jesus was taking aim at the cross.

This once blind man had been brought to Jesus, probably from some other location and did not live in Bethsaida.

And So, Jesus moved on to Caesarea Philippi. It is from this location that Jesus will soon set His sights on Jerusalem.

*****Mar 8:27  And Jesus went out, and his disciples, into the towns of Caesarea Philippi: and by the way he asked his disciples, saying unto them, Whom do men say that I am?

This area is the location of the source of the River Jordan and near the base of Mount Hermon.

Jordan means "watering place" and this is the place the Lord Jesus Christ chose to ask this certain question of His chosen disciples.

Whom do men say that I am?

Jesus has these words for the woman at the well and for us all:

Joh 4:14  But whosoever drinketh of the water that I shall give him shall never thirst; but the water that I shall give him shall be in him a well of water springing up into everlasting life.

Just as the River Jordan has its beginning from the melted snow of Mount Hermon and the fountains near its base, Jesus Christ is the true source of "living water"!

Humans, animals and plants are alive because they have been infused with life.

But the Lord Jesus Christ "is life"!

Jesus Christ has life in Himself, he is not derived from life as is all His creation!

Jesus Christ is the source of all life as we know it!

Just to the north of this city, at the foot of a steep crag, the fountain of Jordan rises to it’s beginning and brings life to this region.

But, Jesus Christ is the fountain of all life!

Psa 36:9  For with thee is "the fountain of life": in thy light shall we see light.

What is wrong with this world today?

Jer 2:13  For my people have committed two evils; "they have forsaken me the fountain of living waters", and hewed them out cisterns, broken cisterns, that can hold no water.

And how did these 12 answer?

*****Mar 8:28  And they answered, John the Baptist: but some say, Elias; and others, One of the prophets.

It is not be very important what people say about or think about us BUT "it is very important that they think right about the Lord Jesus Christ"!

Jesus Christ is the Son of God and the only means of salvation in this lost world!

Jesus Christ must be the Lord of our lives!

That cannot happen until we have accepted The Lord as Our Savior and filled with His Holy Sprit!

1Co 12:3  Wherefore I give you to understand, that no man speaking by the Spirit of God calleth Jesus accursed: and that no man can say that Jesus is the Lord, "but by the Holy Ghost".

Jesus called John the Baptist the greatest man born of a woman:

Mat 11:11  Verily I say unto you, Among them that are born of women there hath not risen a greater than John the Baptist: notwithstanding he that is least in the kingdom of heaven is greater than he.

John was now dead but there were many that felt this same way about the Lord Jesus Christ!

Many of them knew the prophecy of Elijah:

Mal 4:5  Behold, I will send you Elijah the prophet before the coming of the great and dreadful day of the LORD:
Mal 4:6  And he shall turn the heart of the fathers to the children, and the heart of the children to their fathers, lest I come and smite the earth with a curse.

But Jesus responded to this thought like this:

Mat 17:11  And Jesus answered and said unto them, Elias truly shall first come, and restore all things.
Mat 17:12  But I say unto you, That Elias is come already, and they knew him not, but have done unto him whatsoever they listed. Likewise shall also the Son of man suffer of them.

Others said that Jesus was just one of the prophets that had already died such as Moses, Daniel, Jeremiah or Ezekiel.

These all would have only one thing in common if it were any of them.

They were all dead and "would have had to been resurrected" from the dead.

So, it teaches us all these people agreed that the things that Jesus did required "resurrection power"!

They just did not realize how true this was.

But we know that God spoke through the prophets to mankind and God established this standard for Himself:

Deu 18:15  The LORD thy God will raise up unto thee a Prophet from the midst of thee, of thy brethren, like unto me; unto him ye shall hearken;
Deu 18:16  According to all that thou desiredst of the LORD thy God in Horeb in the day of the assembly, saying, Let me not hear again the voice of the LORD my God, neither let me see this great fire any more, that I die not.
Deu 18:17  And the LORD said unto me, They have well spoken that which they have spoken.
Deu 18:18  I will raise them up a Prophet from among their brethren, like unto thee, and will put my words in his mouth; and he shall speak unto them all that I shall command him.
Deu 18:19  And it shall come to pass, that whosoever will not hearken unto my words which he shall speak in my name, I will require it of him.

No sinner can stand before the Father!

Only those that have been washed in the blood of Jesus, "that prophet raised from among their brethren" can stand before the Father.

Jesus was Jew of the tribe of Judah and household of David.

We know that the early church was in agreement that these things were fulfilled in Jesus Christ:

Act 3:19  Repent ye therefore, and be converted, that your sins may be blotted out, when the times of refreshing shall come from the presence of the Lord;
Act 3:20  And he shall send Jesus Christ, which before was preached unto you:
Act 3:21  Whom the heaven must receive until the times of restitution of all things, which God hath spoken by the mouth of all his holy prophets since the world began.
Act 3:22  For Moses truly said unto the fathers, A prophet shall the Lord your God raise up unto you of your brethren, like unto me; him shall ye hear in all things whatsoever he shall say unto you.
Act 3:23  And it shall come to pass, that every soul, which will not hear that prophet, shall be destroyed from among the people.

No prophet throughout the Bible fulfilled the will of the Father except Jesus Christ!

Joh 1:16  And of his fulness have all we received, and grace for grace.
Joh 1:17  For the law was given by Moses, "but grace and truth came by Jesus Christ".
Joh 1:18  No man hath seen God at any time; the only begotten Son, which is in the bosom of the Father, he hath declared him.

It is Jesus Christ that is Head of the House of God!

Heb 3:6  But Christ "as a son over his own house"; [whose house are we], if we hold fast the confidence and the rejoicing of the hope firm unto the end.

But the importance lies in this response of those that know the Lord as Savior.

*****Mar 8:29  And he saith unto them, But whom say ye that I am? And Peter answereth and saith unto him, Thou art the Christ.

We began our lesson explaining that "Christ" means the " Anointed One" sent from God.

Makes me think of these words the Lord told to Abraham.

Gen 22:8  And Abraham said, My son, "God will provide himself" a lamb for a burnt offering: so they went both of them together.

Explained well in the Book of Philippians:

Php 2:5  Let this mind be in you, which was also in Christ Jesus:
Php 2:6  Who, being in the form of God, thought it not robbery to be equal with God:
Php 2:7  But made himself of no reputation, and took upon him the form of a servant, and was made in the likeness of men:
Php 2:8  And being found in fashion as a man, he humbled himself, and became obedient unto death, even the death of the cross.
Php 2:9  Wherefore God also hath highly exalted him, and given him a name which is above every name:
Php 2:10  That at the name of Jesus every knee should bow, of things in heaven, and things in earth, and things under the earth;
Php 2:11  And that every tongue should confess that Jesus Christ is Lord, to the glory of God the Father.

Mark skips over another thing that should be mentioned from Peter’s response.

Mat 16:17  And Jesus answered and said unto him, Blessed art thou, Simon Barjona: for flesh and blood hath not revealed it unto thee, "but my Father which is in heaven".
Mat 16:18  And I say also unto thee, That thou art Peter, and upon this rock I will build my church; and the gates of hell shall not prevail against it.
Mat 16:19  And I will give unto thee the keys of the kingdom of heaven: and whatsoever thou shalt bind on earth shall be bound in heaven: and whatsoever thou shalt loose on earth shall be loosed in heaven.

We can only know the truth, if it is revealed to us by the Holy Ghost!

The foundation of the Church must be based on the fact the Jesus Christ was the Jewish Messiah and also Savior to the Church!

The Church has only one foundation that is essential and it is the fact that Jesus Christ was and is God in the flesh!

1Jn 5:20  And we know that the Son of God is come, and hath given us an understanding, that we may know him that is true, and we are in him that is true, even in his Son Jesus Christ. "This is the true God, and eternal life".

It is only after the disciples understand this that Jesus began to explain that He would have to die to fulfill the will of His Father in Heaven.

*****Mar 8:30  And he charged them that they should tell no man of him.
Mar 8:31  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.

You see God has this plan and we must be part of His plan!

We cannot ever change God’s plan!

We should be able see that it was only after these chosen disciples of God had made an open confession that Jesus was truly the Messiah, that Jesus could speak of His sufferings and the cross.

AND, It is only after we have that same understanding that Jesus Christ is God in the flesh, that we are open to the rewards of  Heaven.

Heb 11:6  But without faith it is impossible to please him: for he that cometh to God must believe that he is, and that he is a rewarder of them that diligently seek him.

There is no other plan of salvation that can lead us into the throne room of God!

Joh 14:6  Jesus saith unto him, I am the way, the truth, and the life: no man cometh unto the Father, but by me.

Satan has done his job of deception very well and most of our world are caught up in his snare!

So what was this part of God’s plan?

1.) Jesus would suffer many things of this world.

2.) Jesus would be rejected by the government.

3.) Jesus would be rejected by the established religions.

4.) Jesus would be rejected by those that wrote their own versions of the Bible.

5.) Jesus would be killed.

6.) But praise God after 3 days Jesus would rise from that death!

God says that this, His own plan, is the only plan that can bring victory after His death.

Jesus did not die as a Martyr!

Jesus Christ died as the perfect sacrificial Lamb of God!

You see Jesus did all the work and the only work we have to do to get to Heaven is "to believe" and then repent and go toward God and not against Him!

Eph 2:8  For by grace are ye saved through faith; and that not of yourselves: it is the gift of God:
Eph 2:9  Not of works, lest any man should boast.

But there are always those that just do not like God’s plan and seek to make changes in God’s plan!

*****Mar 8:32  And he spake that saying openly. And Peter took him, and began to rebuke him.

How did Jesus respond to Peter?

Jesus spoke to Peter boldly and with confidence.

Jesus did not use a parable.

Jesus made this very clear to Peter and then to all the others.

*****Mar 8:33  But when he had turned about and looked on his disciples, he rebuked Peter, saying, Get thee behind me, Satan: for thou savourest not the things that be of God, but the things that be of men.

1) Peter did not realize what he was saying.

Peter had suggested that he would try to stop this plan of Christ Jesus.

Peter did not like God’s plan!

This is the very act that Satan was and is trying to accomplish!

Satan will use everything within his own power to keep Jesus from fulfilling the plan of God!

So what does Our Lord do?

1Ti 5:20  Them that sin rebuke before all, that others also may fear.

Jesus just turned away from Peter and rebuked him before the other disciples.

Was Jesus being spiteful or hateful in doing this?

Rev 3:19  As many as I love, I rebuke and chasten: be zealous therefore, and repent.

The Apostle Peter learned an awful lot of things through hard experience!

I must say, I have also learned many things from hard experience!

Jesus was saying to His disciples, "Don’t Stand In My Way"?

When we look at things through human eyes we will sometimes miss what God is trying to accomplish!

Anything and anyone that tries to deter or change the plan of God then become the adversary of God!

Peter learned this lesson very well and it influenced him.

1Pe 5:8  Be sober, be vigilant; because your adversary the devil, as a roaring lion, walketh about, seeking whom he may devour:
1Pe 5:9  Whom resist stedfast in the faith, knowing that the same afflictions are accomplished in your brethren that are in the world.
1Pe 5:10  But the God of all grace, who hath called us unto his eternal glory by Christ Jesus, after that ye have suffered a while, make you perfect, stablish, strengthen, settle you.

We are to deliver God’s message, if we want to be a part of God’s plan!

Anyone that tries to alter the plan of God then becomes the enemy of God!

So what are the conditions for following Jesus Christ?

Jesus lays those conditions out in our next verse!

*****Mar 8:34  And when he had called the people unto him with his disciples also, he said unto them, Whosoever will come after me, let him deny himself, and take up his cross, and follow me.

Every Christian should expect these things:

1.) There will be hardships.
2) There must be self denial. (Die to self)
3) We must bear our own cross.
4) There will be scorn from this world.
5) We must have patience sown in love!
6) We must follow! (Jesus will lead)

In order to be a follower there must be a leader!

The key to repentance is the acknowledgement that we all have a sinful nature!

Not one human being is a good person that sometimes does bad things!

Every human being is a sinful creature who sometimes does some good things!

It is only based on this truth that we can be led to salvation!

Rom 6:6  Knowing this, that our old man is crucified with him, that the body of sin might be destroyed, that henceforth we should not serve sin.
Rom 6:7  For he that is dead is freed from sin.

When we are unwilling to bear this cross we will never know real life here on Earth, and then eternal life.

That eternal life in Heaven can only be found when we die to our own self and live for Jesus Christ!

*****Mar 8:35  For whosoever will save his life shall lose it; but whosoever shall lose his life for my sake and the gospel’s, the same shall save it.

The Atheist teach that this life we have now is all there is.

So their motto is live this life by your own standards while you are alive and then you die and that’s it.

Even if all we see were an accident, as the Evolutionists believe, this would still be a sad thing!

God says it this way:

Eph 2:12  That at that time "ye were without Christ",[ being aliens from the commonwealth of Israel, and strangers from the covenants of promise, "having no hope, and without God in the world"]:

But to "having hope" for life after this physical life rest in the hands of God and cannot happen by accident.

So it’s a matter of perspective.!

If this life is all that there is, then certainly to live the life of a suffering saint of God does not seem worthwhile.

BUT,  if there is a greater and grandeur life ahead then that changes everything!

AND THERE IS!

The Apostle Paul said it this way:

Rom 8:18  For I reckon that the sufferings of this present time "are not worthy to be compared" with the glory which shall be revealed in us.

No one can deny that every human being will have pains, troubles, and anxieties in their life time.

Many of these things we bring on ourselves, but to the Christian we can add to this, the ridicule of this world because we have a relationship with Jesus!

When I was a soldier, I sold my life for base pay,(really a very small amount of money) and to serve my country which I love but even this was not much value for my life had I lost my life in a battle.

Now as a soldier in God’s army, I love my Captain of salvation and I honor His profession.

I can endure the fears and perils of this life because there is a greater payday coming and then there will be life eternal!

You can deny God if you want to, but I choose to believe the truth!

I can love myself more, by not loving the things of this world!

For what is my profit in this life?

*****Mar 8:36  For what shall it profit a man, if he shall gain the whole world, and lose his own soul?
Mar 8:37  Or what shall a man give in exchange for his soul?

It is a poor exchange to trade a soul for money or pleasure, or any other "temporary" thing.

If I know my life is but a whisper of time, then the things I can possess in this world, I truly will not be able to
hold to for very long!

1Ti 6:10  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".

In most every case, the riches of this world will bring with those riches even more sorrows!

True riches comes only when I trust my God.

1Ti 6:17  Charge them that are rich in this world, that they be not highminded, nor trust in uncertain riches, but in the living God, who giveth us richly all things to enjoy;
1Ti 6:18  That they do good, that they be rich in good works, ready to distribute, willing to communicate;
1Ti 6:19  Laying up in store for themselves a good foundation against the time to come, that they may lay hold on eternal life.

So the real truth is still the facts of God, and He has written those facts down for us!

*****Mar 8:38  Whosoever therefore shall be ashamed of me and of my words in this adulterous and sinful generation; of him also shall the Son of man be ashamed, when he cometh in the glory of his Father with the holy angels.

We can only deny our selves when we surrender ourselves to the Lord Jesus Christ!

When we live for Christ Jesus we will become more like Him!

To be a disciple of Jesus Christ is our only true investment in this world and the world to come!

We can either invest in our lives or lose our lives!

You see once we have spent our lives, we cannot buy it back.

Rom 6:23  "For the wages of sin is death"; but the gift of God is eternal life through Jesus Christ our Lord.

We can be like the world or we can strive to be like Jesus, these are the only two choices we have.

1Jn 3:2  Beloved, now are we the sons of God, and it doth not yet appear what we shall be: but we know that, when he shall appear, we shall be like him; for we shall see him as he is.
1Jn 3:3  And every man that hath this hope in him purifieth himself, even as he is pure.

We cannot purify our selves after death, we must do this while we live!

Next week we will see the glory of God.

Questions?

Let’s Pray!

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