Thursday, March 1, 2012

Mark 11

The Triumphal Entry

On the way to Jerusalem, Jesus told 2 of his disciples to go to a nearby village and get a colt which no one has ever sat on. When they got to Jesus they threw their cloaks on the colt and he sat on it. Many people put their coats and leafy branches on the road in front of Jesus. Everyone was excited and shouted blessings.

In Matthew there was also a donkey, what is the deal with that?

Jesus Curses the Fig Tree

The next day Jesus was hungry and he went to a fig tree. It was not the season for figs so there were only leaves so Jesus cursed the tree saying "may no one ever eat fruit from you again"

What does he expect if it is not the season for figs? Also, this is a lot different form the Matthew story, in that one the tree withered and died on the spot.

Jesus Cleanses the Temple

Jesus went into the temple in Jerusalem and overturned the tables of the money-changers. He said they have turned the place into a den of robbers. The people were amazed and the chief priests and scribes were afraid and were seeking a way to destroy him.

I gotta say, I like this story. Regardless of your stance on religion, I would imagine pretty much everyone is against those who pervert the church for personal gains. Also, this time when "the people are amazed" it makes sense to me. Jesus is doing something good that is directly in the face of some powerful people. I would be amazed too.

The Lesson from the Withered Fig Tree

They walk by the fig tree that Jesus cursed the previous day and it had since withered. Peter points it out and Jesus said that anything you ask for in prayer you will get if you have faith. The example he gives is asking for a mountain to be thrown into the sea.

They changed the details but the point is the same, you can get anything in prayer if you really believe. Is the example of a mountain supposed to be real or just hyperbole? If it is not to be taken literally, what is the real message? If it is to be taken literally...really?

The Authority of Jesus Challenged

The scribes and elders asked Jesus by what authority he does what he does. He says he will answer if they tell him whether the baptism of John was from heaven or from man. They don't want to say heaven because he will then just say he also has authority from heaven. They don't want to say man because the people believe he was a prophet. So they avoid the question and so does Jesus.

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