Mark Daily Readings, WEEK EIGHT

DAY ONE MARK 13:1-23

Re-read verses 1-2. What do you think Jesus is trying to say to the disciples? The disciples were very impressed with the magnificence of the temple. However, Jesus values very little outward pomp where there is no purity of heart. How have you fallen for what looks good on the outside over what is truly good on the inside? How have you worked harder on your personal image than on your heart? It’s a struggle for many of us. Spend some time in prayer today before you move on to the rest of the passage praying about what you truly value and the state of your heart. Moving on to verses 3-23… What emotions does this passage bring up within you? How does Jesus’ attitude/description go with his favour for heart over pomp? He makes some pretty bold statements in this passage. What stands out most for you? What is difficult for you to take in? Why? Jesus was careful to caution against deception. Be awakened to be on your guard. When all around is in disorder, disciples of Christ may enjoy holy security and peace of mind. How can you/do you take heed to not be drawn away from Christ and your duty to Him? What do you think has the potential to do just that (look at what may have drawn you away in the past)? Pray for discernment for today and the days to come.

DAY TWO MARK 13:24-37

Close your eyes and imagine what you just read. (Read again if you need to.) Really try to picture it. What do you see? How do you feel? How do you picture Jesus in that moment? Is it beyond your imagination? How? What urgency do verses 32-37 stir within you? How are these verses encouraging? How are they challenging? Are you ok/comfortable with some mystery? Why or why not? Why do you think “that day or hour” (v. 32) is kept a mystery? What does that mean for you?

DAY THREE MARK 14:1-26

The words of verse 9 are penetrating, “I tell you the truth, wherever the gospel is preached throughout the world, what she has done will also be told, in memory of her.” Why was what this woman did of such importance? What can you learn from her? What is interesting about the timing of this precious moment to you (hint: v. 1-2 and v. 10-11 are the bookends to this story of a woman honouring Jesus)? What have you been offering Jesus? What are you offering Him today? The Lord’s Supper (Communion) is a common ritual in churches. How does this story give understanding to its meaning? How does reading this passage (v. 12-26) give depth to your meaning/understanding of the Lord’s Supper both then (for the disciples) and now (for you)?

DAY FOUR MARK 14:27-42

Does Peter’s response to Jesus surprise you (v. 29 and 31)? Why or why not? How can you identify with Peter in this story? Do you think he truly believed in what he was saying to Jesus? As you read on (in v. 32-41), how would you describe Peter’s behaviour? How does it line up with his dialogue with Jesus in the earlier verses? What do you think you would have done if you were Peter in that moment? It’s easier to have an idea of what our behaviour might be/should be from an outside objective perspective. However, in the moment, it’s easy to succumb to temptation (like Jesus was saying in v. 38). What impresses you most about this passage? What do you find most challenging? How has what you have read going to make an impact in your day? In your week? In your faith?

DAY FIVE MARK 14:43-65

Can you picture the scene? Try to imagine what Jesus was thinking… what Judas was thinking/feeling… what the crowd was thinking… what Peter and the others (who were just praying with Jesus in the garden) were thinking/feeling… What do you make of verse 50? As confident as Peter may have been in assuring Jesus he would never leave or disown Him (v. 29 and 31), verse 50 causes us to believe that even he “deserted [Jesus] and fled”. What do you think of Peter’s character? How might you have compassion or understanding for his behaviour? What do you think about Peter’s behaviour in verse 53-54? What stands out to you about Jesus’ trial (v. 55-65)? What do you think about Jesus choosing to remain silent (v. 60-61) and Jesus’ chosen response (v. 62)? Verse 64 ends with Jesus being condemned as “worthy of death” (NIV) or “deserving death” (ESV) or “guilty of death” (KJV). What do you think of those phrases? Of this public disapproval of Jesus? How does this passage change or enhance your view of Jesus and His purpose?

Breaking the Mould Reading plan and general series outline theme adapted from ‘Defiance: Challenging the norm’ Source: ministrymatters.com