John 2

John 2: Water into Wine

                There was a marriage in Cana of Galilee, and the Mother of Jesus was there, Jesus and His Apostles were also there. Some of the guests complain that there is no wine to drink and Mary tells them that they don’t have any more wine. Jesus tells His mother that He is still there and can help out. So, Mary tells the servants to follow any direction given by Jesus.

Jesus commands that all the water pots to be filled with water (all six at the party), and Jesus converted them into wine! But no ordinary wine, Good wine! From this miracle, which is explained as one of His first, the apostles believed on Him. Jesus leaves the party and heads to Capernaum where He goes to the Temple to find money changers…

Jesus was VERY displeased to find that His Father’s house had been turned into a den of thieves; He “…overthrew the tables; And said unto them… make not my Father’s house an house of merchandise.” (John 2:15-16) Those gathered ask Him what sign He would give that they might believe Him and He said; “…Destroy this temple, and in three days I will raise it up.” (John 2:19) The Jews were skeptical and said; “…Forty and six years was this temple in building, and wilt thou rear it up in three days?” (John 2:20) But, Jesus did not speak of the Temple they were standing in, but His own Temple, His body.

Jesus continued throughout the land and performed many miracles, but did not entrust Himself to many people, for “…he knew what was in man.” (John 2:25) In other words, Jesus was careful, because he knew that man could attempt to deceive Him, before His work was over.

Luke 10

Luke 10: The Seventy

“…the Lord appointed other seventy also, and sent them two and two before his face into every city and place…” (Luke 10:1)

Jesus then explains to the newly organized group of the ‘Seventy’ that the harvest is great, but the laborers are few. He tells them that he sends them as sheep, among the wolves. He gives them instruction to carry no money, and upon entering a house to say; “…Peace be to this house.” (Luke 10:5) and in whatever house a Seventy or Missionary should enter to “…eat such things as are set before you:” (Luke 10:8)

The Church of Jesus Christ of Latter-day Saints also has a Quorum of the Seventy, as shown in the below Organization of Christ’s Restored Church:

ldschurchstructure

Jesus tells them exactly what to say if a city rejects them…

“Even the very dust of your city, which cleaveth on us, we do wipe off against you: notwithstanding be ye sure of this, that the kingdom of God is come nigh unto you. But I say unto you, that it shall be more tolerable in that day for Sodom, than for that city. Woe unto thee, Chorazin! woe unto thee, Bethsaida! for if the mighty works had been done in Tyre and Sidon, which have been done in you, they had a great while ago repented, sitting in sackcloth and ashes. But it shall be more tolerable for Tyre and Sidon at the judgment, than for you. And thou, Capernaum, which art exalted to heaven, shalt be thrust down to hell.” (Luke 10:11-15)

Jesus tells the Seventy that those “…that heareth you heareth me: and he that despiseth you despiseth me…” (Luke 10:16) The Seventy shout for Joy at their new callings! They explain; “…even the devils are subject unto us through thy name.” (Luke 10:17) Jesus tells them to not rejoice because they have the power over devils, but rejoice because their names will be written in heaven. Jesus explains that He is happy that God the Father has “…hid these things from the wise and prudent, and hast revealed them unto babes…” (Luke 10:21) Essentially Jesus is telling them, and the reader today that the things of the Gospel of Jesus Christ are not perceived by wisdom, but by the simple of understanding and knowledge; ‘babes’. Jesus tells the Seventy that they should be grateful for knowing the things they know, because many rulers have desired to know and see the things which they had witnessed.

A man among them, who was an attorney, asks Jesus what he should do to inherit eternal life. Jesus asks him how he interprets the writings and he explains to Jesus that all he needs to do is “…love the Lord thy God with all thy heart, and with all thy soul, and all thy strength and with all thy mind; and thy neighbor as thyself.” (Luke 10:27) Jesus tells the man that he is correct, but the man then asks Jesus; “…who is my neighbor?” (Luke 10:29)

In response to the man’s question, Jesus tells the Parable of the Good Samaritan…

                “…A certain man went down from Jerusalem to Jericho, and fell among thieves, which stripped him of his raiment [clothes], and wounded him, and departed leaving him half dead…. There came down a certain priest that way: and when he saw him, he passed by on the other side. And likewise a Levite, when he was at the place, came and looked on him, and passed by on the other side.” (Luke 10:30-32)

                So, there was a ‘certain man’, who we assume was Jewish, but may or may not have been Jewish, is robbed, beaten and left for dead. The road he was on was probably heavily traveled, so it is not surprising that two people had walked by him in a fairly short period of time. Although time is not mentioned, I personally believe that the events all took place within the same daylight. Both a priest and a Levite pass the man, forgetting the simple ‘love thy neighbor’.

Jesus continues the Parable; “But a certain Samaritan, as he journeyed, came where he was: and when he saw him, he had compassion on him, And went to him, and bound up his wounds, pouring in oil and wine, and set him on his own beast, and brought him to an inn, and took care of him. And on the morrow when he departed, he took out two pence, and gave them to the host, and said unto him, Take care of him; and whatsoever thou spendest more, when I come again, I will repay thee.” (Luke 10:33-35)

Good-Samaritan-Mormon

So, we learn that no matter what faith, gender or race we should show compassion on one another. Jesus asks the man who proposed the ‘who is my neighbor’ question, “Which now of these three, thinkest thou, was neighbor unto him that fell among thieves? And he said He that showed mercy on him. Then said Jesus unto him, Go and do thou likewise.” (Luke 10:36-37)

The answer to the man’s question was easy, and the Parable of the Good Samaritan really hammers the message home. No matter who we are dealing with, even our enemies… when someone needs help we help!

Luke 7

Luke 7: Follow Jesus Christ

                After Jesus had finished speaking with those gathered, He traveled to Capernaum, where He is asked to heal a centurion’s servant. The centurion tells Jesus that He doesn’t need Him to come back to his house, because he is not worthy of the Lord to enter into his home.  But the man still believed that Jesus could heal his servant, and Jesus did. The servant was healed and Jesus proclaimed that the Centurion had great faith.

Jesus then travels to the city of Nain. When Jesus arrived He noticed a funeral procession, where a young man had died and his mother was distraught. Jesus saw her, and had compassion on her. Jesus the goes and commands the boy to arise, and he does. Jesus brought the young man back from the dead. The people who witnessed this great even were fearful; nonetheless they were filled with a sense of joy that God had sent such a great prophet to be among them. Jesus tells the witnesses to spread what they saw far and wide. The news spread throughout all of Judea.

Some of the servants of John the Baptists come and speak with Jesus and ask Him; “…Art thou he that should come? Or look we for another?” (Luke 7:20) Jesus explains to them that it is Him who was to come after John the Baptist and while healing the sick, blind, lame and deaf He tells the messenger to relay what they saw to John. So the messengers depart. Jesus then explains to those gathered that John the Baptist was the one who was sent before Him, to prepare the way.

Jesus explains that there is “…not a greater prophet than John the Baptist…” (Luke 6:28)

Those who heard Jesus, the publicans justified God by being baptized by John. But the Pharisees and lawyers “…rejected the counsel of God against themselves, being not baptized of him.” (Luke 6:30)

Why did the Pharisees and lawyers reject the baptism of John? Because they did not understand the word of God! Instead they were not baptized by the proper authority, which is extremely important in baptism, for without the proper priesthood authority one will only get wet.

One of the Pharisees invited Jesus to eat with him, and while eating a sinful woman came and anointed Him with alabaster oil. She also washed His feet with tears and dried them with the hair on her head. A Pharisee in the dinner party took no time to criticize Jesus ; “…This man, if he were a prophet, would have known who and what manner of woman this is that toucheth him: for she is a sinner.” (Luke 7:39)

Jesus then turns to Simon and says; “There was a certain creditor which had two debtors: the one owed five hundred pence, and the other fifty. And when they had nothing to pay, he frankly forgave them both. Tell me therefor, which of them will love him most?” (Luke 7:42) Simon tells Jesus that he supposes the one who owed the most would be happier and love the creditor more. Jesus explains that Simon is correct and continues; “…Seest thou this woman? I entered into thine house, thou gavest me not water for my feet: but she hath washed my feet with tears, and wiped them with the hairs of her head. Thou gavest me no kiss: but this woman since the time I came in hath not ceased to kiss my feet…” (Luke 7:44-45) Jesus finally tells Simon that he failed to do many things, but because the woman was a sinner she loved much when her sins were forgiven. Jesus tells the woman that she is free from her sins and that she is forgiven. He tells her; “…Thy faith hath saved thee; go in peace.” (Luke 7:50)

Luke 4

Luke 4: Jesus Tempted

                Jesus, being full of the Holy Ghost returns from Jordan and is led into the wilderness;

“Being forty days tempted of the devil. And in those days he did eat nothing: and when they were ended, he afterward was hungered. And the devil said unto him, If thou be the Son of God, command this stone that it be made bread.” (Luke 4:2-3)

After 40 days of pure exhaustion, Satan came to tempt Jesus by asking Him to perform a miracle. Could Jesus have turned the rock to bread? I would say yes, however, it was not up to Jesus to prove Himself to the Devil. Jesus responds; “…It is written, That man shall not live by bread alone, but by every word of God.” (Luke 4:4)

The Devil then takes Jesus up to a high mountain and tells Him, that all of the kingdoms of the world would be His, if He just fell to the ground and worshiped him. However, the kingdoms of the world were never the Devil’s to give away. Jesus answered him; “…Get thee behind me Satan: for it is written, Thou shalt worship the Lord thy God, and him only shalt thou serve.” (Luke 4:8)

                Satan then takes Jesus to the pinnacle of the temple and tells Him to jump off, for it is written that “…He shall give his angels charge over thee, to keep thee.” (Luke 4:10) Jesus then tells Satan that he should not tempt God and Satan departs. Jesus was now free from the temptations and returned to Galilee where he taught many people. Jesus enters a synagogue on the Sabbath and is given the book of the prophet Esaias to read in front of the congregation. Jesus opens the book and reads; “The Spirit of the Lord is upon me, because he hath anointed me to preach the gospel to the poor; he hath sent me to heal the broken-hearted, to preach deliverance to the captive, and recovering of sight to the blind, to set at liberty them that are bruised….” (Luke 4:18) (see also Isaiah 61:1-2) Jesus then closed the book and sat down, where the people were astonished at His words.

Jesus then tells them that; “…No prophet is accepted in his own country.” (Luke 4:24) Jesus then cites Elijah, explaining how the widow of Zarephath and Elisha and the healing of the Syrian Naaman, who were both gentiles. This angers the people, and they try to throw Him off of a hill. However, Jesus walks straight through them and goes down to Capernaum in the city of Galilee and taught the people there on the Sabbath, who “…were astonished at his doctrine: for his word was with power.” (Luke 4:32) This means that Jesus did not just teach the Gospel, but taught it with Power and Authority, that was granted to him. Not just anyone can preach the gospel of Jesus Christ.

When Jesus entered into one synagogue; a man who was stricken with an unclean spirit immediately called out to Him. The evil spirit said to Jesus; “…Let us alone; what have we to do with thee, thou Jesus of Nazareth? Art thou come to destroy us? I know thee who thou art; the Holy One of God.” (Luke 4:34) It is important to note that the evil spirit knew who Jesus was, and somewhat feared His power. Jesus rebukes the evil spirit and casts him out of the man. Immediately the people were astonished and said; “…for with authority and power he commandeth the unclean spirits…” (Luke 4:36) Jesus did not just cast the evil spirits out, but He did it with POWER and AUTHORITY!

Jesus then enters the house of Simon, where his wife’s mother was sick with a fever. Jesus immediately heals her and many others who are brought before Him. Jesus then departs into other cities, He leaves the people with an address; “…I must preach the kingdom of God to other cities also; for therefore am I sent.” (Luke 4:43)

Mark 2

Mark 2: Jesus Forgives Sin

                Jesus goes to Capernaum and enters into a house, the word gets out that He is there and people show up in droves! So many that there was not enough room for them in the house, Jesus preaches to them from the house and evil heals a man with Palsy. When the people wanted to get closer to Jesus, they actually broke through the roof of the house and lowered a man sick with Palsy through the roof. When Jesus saw the faith of the people he tells the man who is sick that his sins are forgiven.

Some of the scribes who were there began questioning to themselves; “Why doth this man thus speak blasphemies? Who can forgive sins but God only? …immediately when Jesus perceived in his spirit that they so reasoned within themselves… said unto them, Why reason ye these things in your hearts? Whether it is easier to say to the sick of the palsy, Thy sins be forgiven thee; or to say, Arise, and take up thy bed, and walk? But that ye may know that the Son of man hath power on earth to forgive sins…” (Mark 2:7-10) The man with Palsy is healed and takes his bed and leaves.

Jesus departs to the seaside and finds Levi, sitting idle outside of the tax office and Jesus tells him to follow him, and he does. Jesus goes in to eat with publicans and sinners, but the scribes were confused and ask why Jesus would eat with sinners. Jesus responds; “…They that are whole have no need of the physician, but they that are sick: I came not to call the righteous, but sinners to repentance.” (Mark 2:17)

                Jesus explains that while the Apostles are with Him, they have no need for fasting. Jesus also explains that “…The sabbath was made for man, and not man for the sabbath.” (Mark 2:27), in other words we need to honor the Sabbath day!

Matthew 8

Matthew 8:

Jesus Heals a Leper 

                Jesus ends his Sermon, and begins to come down off the mountain when a leper approaches him and asks him; “…Lord, if thou wilt, canst thou make me clean.” (Matthew 8:2)

Jesus then puts forth his hand and made him clean. Jesus tells the man to depart to a priest and cleanse himself according to the Law of Moses. Jesus then goes to Capernaum and while there is asked to heal a man suffering from Palsy. The man explains that his servant is ill, but that he is not worthy for the Lord to enter into his house to heal the man. Instead, the man asks Jesus to heal him from a distance, and remarkably Jesus agrees, even stating that the man had more faith than most. Jesus tells the man; “…Go thy way; and as thou has believed, so be it done unto thee. And his servant was healed in the selfsame hour.” (Matthew 7:13) One thing that we can learn from this experience, is that we need faith to be healed.

While speaking to the man, Jesus also mentions part of the Plan of Salvation. He speaks of the lowest level, or “hell” as “…outer darkness…” where there shall be “…weeping and gnashing of teeth.” (Matthew 7:12)

                Jesus then continues on to heal and cast out evil spirits. Jesus even healed Peter (the apostle) mother in law. This is very interesting because it proves that Apostles were allowed to marry.

“…Jesus was come into Peter’s house, he saw his wife’s mother laid, and sick of fever.” (Matthew 7:14)

                Jesus, presumably near the docks, is told by a scribe; “…Master, I will follow thee withersoever thou goest… suffer me first to go and bury my father.” (Matthew 7:19,21) We can assume that this scribe had just lost his father, and wished to join Jesus before he left the area. However he asks Jesus to give him enough time to bury his father before following him. Jesus answers him in a very interesting way; “…Follow me; and let the dead bury the dead.” (Matthew 7:22) I don’t believe that Jesus was being insensitive; rather he was expressing how important missionary work is. Jesus essentially told the man that if he wished to follow him, he needed to do it NOW, and not wait.

Jesus then gets on ship with his disciples and sails out into the waters. While in the water, a storm arises and causes the ship to be shaken and covered with waves. The disciples/apostles get nervous and worry that they might perish. During this event, Jesus was fast asleep, so out of desperation and panic the men awake Jesus; “…Lord, save us: we perish.” (Matthew 7:25) Jesus then turns to them and says; “…Why are ye fearful, O ye of little faith? Then he arose, and rebuked the winds and the sea; and there was a great calm.” (Matthew 7:26)

                In shock and awe, as if the apostles and disciples had not seen enough miracles of Jesus healing the sick and casting out devils, the men on the ship question what they just saw… “…What manner of man is this, that even the winds and the sea obey him!” (Matthew 7:27)

                Jesus and his disciples arrive on the other side of the country in Gergesenes, where they meet two men possessed of devils. The devils cry out to Jesus and ask Him, if He was there to torment them. Notice how the evil, fears Jesus? The evil spirits knew that Jesus would cast them out of their human host, and in desperation of having a body, the evil spirits ask Jesus to allow them to possess a group of pigs. Jesus allows this and after leaving their human host, they possess a herd of swine. After they were in their new host, the “…whole herd of swine ran violently down a steep place into the sea and perished in the waters.” (Matthew 7:32)

One thing that we can learn from this is that evil spirits EXIST. They are capable of possession, but only if we allow them into our bodies. Jesus had the power to cast them out of their human host and into a pig. The evil spirits are so jealous that they will never receive a human body, that they are desperate enough to possess a pig! Although shortly after entering the pig, and realizing that it is not the same as having a human body, they commit suicide by running over a cliff to their death.

I find this to be a wonderful, short film that helps us to understand the life and ministry of Jesus Christ. It is not a full account. but a short and condensed version for those who wish not to read, or would like something to supplement their reading…