Sermon on March 11 by Pastor Roland Eskinazi
Scripture: Mark 1:1-8
Why are the gospels more than a biography of Jesus? Mark is giving us historical theology – Why can you trust Jesus?
You can trust Jesus because:
1. IN JESUS, GOD KEEPS HIS WORD!
- Jesus is what no-one else could be (v1)
Jesus is not an invented figure. He is the Messiah (anointed One), expected in history.
If there ever was a Jewish people, there was a man called Jesus, God’s only Son.
- Jesus is all that God can give (v2-3)
Gospel is made up of two words ‘angelos’ (the one announcing news) and ‘eu’ (joyful)
What you do with Jesus, whether you reject Him or love Him, ignore or follow Him will impact your story and destiny.
2. BEFORE JESUS YOU WILL FIND YOUR PLACE!
- John’s message : shocking but faithful (v4-5)
‘Among those born of women there has not risen anyone greater than John the Baptist – yet he who is least in the kingdom of heaven is greater than he.’ (Mat.11:11)
Don’t play down sin and repentance! If one unpardoned sin can take us to hell, living and sharing the gospel is urgent.
- John’s reputation: simple but radical (v6)
We dare not assume the gospel ‘I am a Christian because I am here and I like the vibe and love of these people …’
We must not confuse the gospel – it is not outward morality. Are you resting on the only goodness that can save?
- John’s character: selfless but humble (v7-8)
‘He (Dr. Billy Graham) would ask me to pray that God the Spirit would fill him to the extent that he would be totally hidden behind the cross and that people would only see Jesus. His entire life was in pursuit that he would decrease so that Christ would increase’ (Pastor Don Wilton)
Remember! The gospel dethrones us as kings of our universe and shows us where purpose, salvation and hope lies. Find the centre of the story and your will find your place in it. Surrender to and live for Jesus; you can trust Him!
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QUESTIONS FOR REFLECTION AND DISCUSSION
- What are the implications of Jesus’ title ‘Christ’ in the lives of His followers? How would this affect the way we compare him with others and view other religions and sincere people?
- John’s baptism was a baptism of repentance. Why might this have been shocking for the Jews to hear that they needed to do so?
- Why do you think John gained a large following? How do John and his preaching style compare with current notions of how to gain a following and grow a church?
- How is John’s humble message about Christ similar to what we should tell others about Christ? Pause and pray. Do you belong to Jesus? How does John’s focus on Jesus help you in your walk and testimony to Christ?
Photo credit FreeImages.com/Billy Alexander