Thursday Morning: 09 May 2019 – Mark 8:27-9:1 ~ What’s your perspective?

Thursday Morning

+ In the name of the Father, and of the Son, and of the Holy Spirit. Amen

Opening (A Collect for Guidance – Thursday)

Heavenly Father, in you we live and move and have our being: We humbly pray you so to guide and govern us by your Holy Spirit, that in all the cares and occupations of our life we may not forget you, but may remember that we are ever walking in your sight; through Jesus Christ our Lord. Amen.
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Morning Reading – Mark 8:27-9:1 (NLT)

Peter’s Declaration about Jesus

Jesus and his disciples left Galilee and went up to the villages near Caesarea Philippi. As they were walking along, he asked them, “Who do people say I am?”

“Well,” they replied, “some say John the Baptist, some say Elijah, and others say you are one of the other prophets.”

Then he asked them, “But who do you say I am?”

Peter replied, “You are the Messiah.”

But Jesus warned them not to tell anyone about him.

Jesus Predicts His Death

Then Jesus began to tell them that the Son of Man must suffer many terrible things and be rejected by the elders, the leading priests, and the teachers of religious law. He would be killed, but three days later he would rise from the dead. As he talked about this openly with his disciples, Peter took him aside and began to reprimand him for saying such things.

Jesus turned around and looked at his disciples, then reprimanded Peter. “Get away from me, Satan!” he said. “You are seeing things merely from a human point of view, not from God’s.”

Then, calling the crowd to join his disciples, he said, “If any of you wants to be my follower, you must give up your own way, take up your cross, and follow me. If you try to hang on to your life, you will lose it. But if you give up your life for my sake and for the sake of the Good News, you will save it. And what do you benefit if you gain the whole world but lose your own soul? Is anything worth more than your soul? If anyone is ashamed of me and my message in these adulterous and sinful days, the Son of Man will be ashamed of that person when he returns in the glory of his Father with the holy angels.”

Jesus went on to say, “I tell you the truth, some standing here right now will not die before they see the Kingdom of God arrive in great power!”
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Morning Reflection:

What’s your perspective?

As they were walking along, he asked them,
“Who do people say I am?”
– Mark 8:27

In today’s reading, Jesus is viewed from three perspectives – popular, revelation, and human. Let’s look at each of these perspectives.

+ Popular opinion – What’s the buzz? What are people saying about me? (Mk 8:27) The social media of the day assigned Jesus the prophet’s role of preparing for the Messiah. But few people apparently believed that he actually was the Messiah, in spite of what they had seen and heard.

+ Revelation – “But who do you say I am?” Matthew’s version of the event adds further insight –

Simon Peter answered, “You are the Messiah, the Son of the living God.”
Jesus replied, “You are blessed, Simon son of John,
because my Father in heaven has revealed this to you.
You did not learn this from any human being.” – Matthew 16:16-17

Peter’s confession of faith was God-given (not something he came up with himself). Since Jesus was the Son of God, He was the Messiah, the King over the long anticipated earthly kingdom; Jesus was both Messiah and God. This confession marked a turning point in the disciples’ recognition of Jesus.

+ Human -The disciples apparently agreed with Peter’s confession of faith, but they were unprepared for Jesus’ further revelation that as Messiah he would suffer, die, and rise again. They understood what Jesus was saying, but they couldn’t reconcile it with the popular view of Messiah ushering in an earthly kingdom. Jesus’ rebuke is strong – using the word for silencing demons. Satan attempted to distort the disciples’ understanding of Jesus’ true Messianic mission.

Questions for consideration:

  • In light of the different perspectives listed above. who do you say Jesus is? Please explain.
  • What influence do popular, or human, perspectives have on your understanding of Jesus? Please explain.
  • What is the significance of Jesus’s prediction of his suffering, death, and resurrection? Please explain.
  • How does this affect your understanding of what it means to follow Jesus? Please explain.

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Morning Prayer:

Prayer for churches to rise up:

Lord Jesus: Awaken your church to the critical needs of believers around the world who are suffering calamity and great persecution. Grant that we would be faithful in prayer, and generous in our giving for physical support. Rally your church around those who are suffering for your name’s sake. And empower us by your Spirit to engage our political leaders, especially here in America, in order to remind them that Christian persecution is a real issue that must be addressed in our time. I ask this in your name, and for the Father’s glory. Amen.

My Prayer:

Heavenly Father: Reveal to us, once again, the identity of your Son, Jesus Christ, and the significance of his Messianic mission to suffer, die on the cross, and be raised to life – all so that we could enter into your promised Kingdom – now on earth, and forever in heaven. Drive out any fear or anxiety that we may have about our future; and empower us with your Holy Spirit to love you wholeheartedly, and follow you unreservedly. I ask this in Jesus’ Name. Amen.
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“This I Believe” – Hillsong Kiev

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Closing:

May the peace of the Lord Christ go with you, wherever He may send you. May He guide you through the wilderness, and protect you through the storm. May He bring you home rejoicing at the wonders He has shown you. May He bring you home rejoicing once again into our doors.

+ In the name of the Father, and of the Son, and of the Holy Spirit. Amen



Categories: Life in Christ

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