Gospel of Mark Chapter 14 Part Two
Introduction: A key idea in the Gospel of Mark is that Jesus is the servant of God. Today, we hope to discuss the last supper and the Lord's Supper.
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Read Mark 14:17-21
2. Partaking of the Last Supper. In this section of the Gospel of Mark we see Jesus eating with His disciples. He tells them that one of them will betray Him. They are saddened and each one asks is it him.
Jesus did not disclose the exact name, but declares that it would have been better for the betrayer not to be born. Jesus declares that He will cooperate with what has been written about His betrayal.
- Fellowship among the leader and helpers. Notice in vss. 17-18 of the fourteen chapter of the Gospel of Mark the fellowship among the leader and his helpers. It is helpful for leaders and his or her helpers to have fellowship and a bond among themselves.
Essential elements of this kind of fellowship are discipleship, commitment to one's role, and availability to actually fellowship. It is difficult to fellowship with those who you believe should have been maturer than they are a long time ago.
It is difficult to fellowship with those who are challenging you or cannot stay in their lane. And it is difficult to fellowship with those who don't make time to fellowship. Let's work on doing are part in promoting fellowship between the leader and helpers in our church.
This is important because without fellowship and bonding, the leader can only do so much, and many people suffer, when the church doesn't live up to its maximum. Members can urge helpers to grow up, understand their place, and be available.
- Responding to betrayal. Notice in vss. 18-19 of this section of the Gospel of Mark that the idea of someone betraying Jesus triggered sadness and self examination. There appears to be so little sadness and self examination today.
When people don't live up to their church covenant commitments and betray the confidence placed in them to serve in the church, it is almost expected by others. And those who are guilty show little concern of remorse. Let's work on making sure that we are not the ones who betray Jesus.
This calls for being faithful in our discipleship, which includes helping to create a culture of excellence in the church. This same idea is applicable to our families, jobs, and communities. We should do our part and urge others to do the same. We can do better together.
- The good and bad of trouble. Notice in vs. 21 of the Gospel of Mark the ideas of both God's foreknowledge and the consequences for causing trouble.
On one hand, the betrayal by Judas was foreknown by God and was a part of His plan. But on the other hand, there is great punishment set aside for Judas because of the grief that he caused the One whom god sent.
Let's trust God to work all things out for the good of His people. And let's make sure we are not the ones who cause trouble for the one God sends.
When we don't cooperate and when we murmur, we are causing grief for the one God sent. Even though God can use such immaturity for good, there is punishment for those who carry out the acts.
Read Mark 14:22-25
3. Institution of the Lord's Supper. Jesus institutes what we call communion or the Lord's Supper in this section of the Gospel of Mark.
As an addendum to the meal that they were already eating, Jesus talks about the bread representing His body. He talks about the fruit of the vine representing His blood. And then He talks about how He will not drink from the fruit of the vine, until He drinks it in the Kingdom of God.
- The ritual of communion. Notice what is not mentioned in vss. 22-25 of this section of the Gospel of Mark, regarding communion. There is no mention of the first Sunday, men wearing black, women wearing white, communion trays, or even a communion table.
The ritual that we carry out today is a product of what makes sense to us today. This means, if something makes better sense to us tomorrow then we ought to do what makes better sense. Let's not limit ourselves to what we do today, and let's not change just to be changing.
- The symbolism of communion. Notice in vss. 22-24 that the bread represents the body of Christ and the fruit of the vine represents the blood of Christ. Jesus made such a great sacrifice for us to be saved.
We symbolically ingest Him in the communion ordinance. When we think about what He has done for us, we should be moved to live for Him. When we think about how we are what we eat, we should live for Jesus.
To live for Jesus includes at least being regular in Bible Study, being involved in a ministry along with inviting and bringing loved ones to church and Christ, and it involves paying our tithes and offerings.
It is absolutely terrible for us to be in church for years but have no regular Bible study, no service that we are responsible for, and always robbing God of His tithes and offerings. Let's live like we really understand the elements of communion.
- The hope of communion. Notice in vs. 25 of the Gospel of Mark that there is hope in the communion. Jesus talks about His return. The reason we should be able to keep on keeping on is because we believe that Jesus is on His way back.
If we die before He gets back, we shall be resurrected to be with Him. If we are alive when He returns, that will be a glorious occasion. Our hope is not in the flimsy things of this world but in Christ and His promises.
Let's live like we believe in the promises of Christ. Such behavior should be noted for obediently loving God, ourselves, and others.
Conclusion: Let's work on being servants God. God has much for those who obey His will.
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