John 12

John 12: Receive Christ = Receive God

                Jesus comes to Bethany, six days before the Passover begins. He goes to the same place where He raised Lazarus from the dead, and there they make Him dinner. Mary took out ointment of spikenard and begins to anoint the feet of Jesus and wipe it with her hair. Judas Iscariot asked why this very expensive ointment wasn’t sold and the money given to the poor. Judas said this; “…not that he cared for the poor; but because he was a thief, and had the bad, and bare what was put therein.” (John 12:6) Essentially the money given to the ‘poor’ was put in a bag that he usually had control over. His concern was not getting his cut of the expensive ointment. Jesus tells Judas to calm; “…Let her alone: against the day of my burying hath she kept this. For the poor always ye have with you; but me ye have not always.” (John 12:7-8)

                Many of the people who had heard about Jesus and how He raised Lazarus from the dead come to see, and believe on Him. Many people attended the feast and this made some Jews uncomfortable, so they plot the death of Jesus and Lazarus. Jesus continues moving forward, riding on a Colt into town as the crowd came to Him, saying; “…Hosanna: Blessed is the King of Israel that cometh in the name of the Lord.” (John 12:13)

Jesus teaches that the “…the hour is come that the Son of man should be glorified.” (John 12:23) and continues by stating; “He that loveth his life shall lose it; and he that hateth his life in this world shall keep it unto life eternal.” (John 12:25) We learn from this, that whatever state you leave this world, you will enter the next. If you lived a happy life and tried to look at the positive, even during the bad… you will have that mindset in the next life. If you are grumpy in this life, you will be grumpy in the next, and so forth. Jesus knew that His hour had come and knew that He was going to be dying for the Sins of all mankind.

Jesus looks to the heavens and says; “Father, glorify thy name.” (John 12:28) Then a voice from heaven came down saying; “…I have both glorified it, and I will glorify it again.” (John 12:28) Jesus explains to the crowd that the voice came down, for their benefit and not for the benefit of Jesus. This was another sign that was given to the believers. Many of the chief priests also believed that Jesus was the Christ, however; “…they loved the praise of men more than the praise of God.” (John 12:43) and because they loved the praise of man more than God, they did not want to lose their influence over the people. The chief priests saw Jesus taking their glory and they wanted it all. We can learn from this, by wanting spiritual things, instead of wanting the things of the world.

John 11

John 11: Lazarus

                In the town of Bethany there was a sick man by the name of Lazarus, who was the brother of Mary, the one who anointed the feet of Jesus. Upon hearing this news that He was sick, He stayed where He was for two days, then He told His Apostles that they should go down into Judea. But having been recently rejected from that are, the Apostles were confused as to why Jesus would want to go there again. Jesus teaches them; “…Are there not twelve hours in the day? If any man walk in the day, he stumbleth not, because he seeth the light of this world. But if a man walk in the night, he stumbleth, because there is not light with him.” (John 11:9-10) Essentially if we don’t have the light of God with us, we will always stumble among the world of darkness. We should always walk among others of good crowd, so that the light from all can shine together.

Jesus tells them that “…Our friend Lazarus sleepeth…I go, that I may awake him out of a sleep.” (John 11:11) Later Jesus told His Apostles, that Lazarus was indeed dead. When they arrived to meet Lazarus, they learn that four days had passed since he was laid to rest in his tomb. When Mary and Martha (Mary’s sister) find out that Jesus has come, Martha runs to meet Him, and says to Jesus; “…if thou hadst been here, my brother had not died.” (John 11:21) But she knew the power of God and the miracles that Jesus had performed and says; “…I know, that even not, whatsoever thou wilt ask of God, God will give it thee.” (John 11:22) Jesus reassures her; “…Thy brother shall rise again.” (John 11:23) Martha knew of the Resurrection and explains that she knows he would one day rise again, in the last day. Jesus then tells her; “…I am the resurrection, and the life: he that believeth on my, though he were dead, yet shall he live.” (John 11:25) Jesus asks Martha if she believe this and she responds that she does. Jesus then calls for Mary and she came running out of the house, those who were gathered with her followed her, thinking she was going to the tomb of Lazarus.

When Mary met Jesus she fell at His feet and cried, those Jews who followed her out of the house also wept, even “Jesus wept.” (John 11:35) The Jews and all those gathered said to “…Behold how he loved him!” (John 11:36) and those same people wondered if Jesus could perform such a great miracle of raising someone from the dead. Jesus asked to see where Lazarus was buried and before entering the tomb, lifted up His eyes and said; “…Father, I thank thee that thou hast heard me. And I knew that thou hearest me always; but because of the people which stand by I said it, that they may believe that thou hast sent me.” (John 11:41-42) This is very interesting, because the people believed in Jesus, they were given signs. Throughout the scriptures people have asked for signs to believe, but it doesn’t work that way. Signs follow those who believe, and that is evident here. You don’t have to KNOW, you just have to BELIEVE and by BELIEVING, God will give you signs and wonders, to make you KNOW!

Jesus then “…cried with a loud voice, Lazarus, come forth.” (John 11:43) At that very moment, Lazarus came forth, bound in his grave clothes. Jesus commanded that those around him go and loose him from those bands. Many of the Jews gathered did believe on Jesus.

Some of the Jews who did not believe went their ways to tell the Pharisees, and they held a council; “…What do we? For this man doeth many miracles. If we let him thus alone, all men will believe on him: and the Romans shall come and take away both our place and nation.” (John 11:47-48) The Chief Priest Caiaphas came to the conclusion that Jesus must die for the nation, so that only one many perish and not the entire nation. Jesus knew of their desires and fled from the Jews, no longer teaching among them. He and His Apostles continued to teach in a city called Ephraim. During this time, the Feast of the Passover was occurring, and the Jews waited for Jesus to show, so they could capture Him.

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.

Summary of Luke

Summary of Luke

Like the books of Matthew and Mark, we learn from the Book of Luke the stories of the birth of Jesus Christ and John the Baptist. Luke tells us that the angel Gabriel appears to Zechariah, telling him that his wife Elizabeth, formerly barren, is pregnant. Soon afterward, Gabriel appears to Elizabeth’s relative, the Virgin Mary, telling her that she too is going to give birth to a child by the Power of the Holy Ghost.

Mary and Joseph travel from their home in Nazareth to Bethlehem to pay taxes to Herod, it is in Bethlehem, in a manger, Jesus is born. Later in a younger age, Jesus was found instructing older men of great wisdom in the temple. Once Jesus grows to the age of about 30, He is baptized in the desert of Judea by John the Baptist.  John is soon imprisoned by Herod, the ruler of the northern Galilee region.

We learn of Jesus’s genealogy, stretching back to the first man, Adam, who is said to be “… the son of God.” (Luke 3:38). We are told of Satan unsuccessfully testing Jesus for forty days in the wilderness. Upon returning from being tempted in the wilderness, Jesus begins his ministry. He is rejected in his hometown of Nazareth and takes to wandering throughout Galilee, where he works many miracles, including casting out devils.

•    In Chapters 1-4: Luke writes a very detailed account of the birth of Jesus, a common Christmas story, yet always fascinating. He then explains John the Baptist’s preparation for the coming Messiah and the baptism of Jesus Christ.

•    In Chapters 5-21: We learn of the ministry of Jesus. As Jesus travels, He teaches, preaches, heals the sick, and brings hope to the desperate and discouraged. He was also seeking those who were obedient and faithful, such as the Roman Centurion who sincerely pleads with Jesus to heal his servant from a far distance, “…say in a word, and my servant shall be healed.” (Luke 7:7). Jesus met many religious leaders who relentlessly opposed Him and constantly tried to trick and kill Him.

•    In Chapters 22-24: Jesus is betrayed by one of His own (Judas). He was unlawfully convicted by a dishonest and hateful court, and sentenced to crucifixion. However, death could not hold Him and after three days He resurrected and arose from the grave, just as He had miraculously raised others during His ministry.

The Story of CHRISTmas

 The Story of CHRISTmas

Nativity-Baby-Jesus-Christmas-2008-christmas-2806967-1000-558

(I have included a 3 part video: ‘Joy to the World’ to accompany the story of CHRISTmas) Enjoy, and Merry Christmas!

                Tis the season for Rudolph the Red Nosed Reindeer, Jingle Bells and of course; Santa Claus! It is the season of bad traffic, great store sales and angry shoppers fighting over some “must have” electronic or gadget. During this HoliDAZE, we often forget the true meaning of Christmas, that is Jesus Christ, our Lord and the Savior of the World.

Since the beginning of time, Prophets have foretold of the coming of a Messiah, a Christ King who would be born in Bethlehem and suffer the sins of the world. The story of the Birth of our Savior begins when the Angel Gabriel visits Mary, and tells her of the coming of her son, Jesus Christ…

“…the angel Gabriel was sent from God unto a city of Galilee, named Nazareth, To a virgin espoused to a man whose name was Joseph, of the house of David; and the virgin’s name was Mary. And the angel came in unto her, and said, Hail, thou that art highly favoured, the Lord is with thee: blessed art thou among women… when she saw him, she was troubled at his saying… And the angel said unto her, Fear not, Mary: for thou hast found favour with God… behold, thou shalt conceive in thy womb, and bring forth a son, and shalt call his name JESUS. He shall be great, and shall be called the Son of the Highest…” (Luke 1:26-31)

                “Then said Mary unto the angel, How shall this be, seeing I know not a man? And the angel answered and said unto her, The Holy Ghost shall come upon thee, and the power of the Highest shall overshadow  thee… that holy thing which shall be born of thee shall be called the Son of God.” (Luke 1:34-35)

                Mary was engaged to Joseph, and being a virgin she was confused as to how she could become pregnant and have a son. Angel Gabriel comforts her and tells her that the Son of God shall be born, and that she had been chosen, being highly favored of God to bring forth Jesus into this world. “For with God nothing shall be impossible.” (Luke 1:37)

                The Story of the Birth of Jesus Christ continues in the Bible;

                “And it came to pass in those days, that there went out a decree from Caesar Augustus, that all the world should be taxed… And all went out to be taxed, everyone into his own city. And Joseph also went up from Galilee, out of the city of Nazareth, into Judaea, unto the city of David, which is called Bethlehem… To be taxed with Mary his espoused wife, being great with child [pregnant]… And so it was, that… the days were accomplished that she should be delivered. And she brought forth her firstborn son, and wrapped him in swaddling clothes, and laid him in a manger; because there was no room for them in the inn.” (Luke 2:1, 3-7)

                It was part of the law in those days for every man to go to his village to pay taxes; Joseph went to Galilee, because that is where he needed to pay his taxes. Because of the great number of people there, they were unable to find a proper place to sleep, and were forced to deliver the baby in a manger. The Son of God was Born, His name;  Jesus Christ!

                During this time, a star was seen in the east, and shepherds abiding in their fields saw that Jesus Christ had been born…

“And there were in the same country shepherds abiding in the field, keeping watch over their flock by night. And, lo, the angel of the Lord came upon them, and the glory of the Lord shone round about them: and they were sore afraid. And the angel said unto them, Fear not: for, behold, I bring you good tidings of great joy, which shall be to all people. For unto you is born this day in the city of David a Saviour, which is Christ the Lord. And this shall be a sign unto you; Ye shall find the babe wrapped in swaddling clothes, lying in a manger. And suddenly there was with the angel a multitude of the heavenly host praising God, and saying, Glory to God in the highest, and on earth peace, good will toward men… as the angels were gone away from them into heaven, the shepherds said one to another, Let us now go even unto Bethlehem, and see this thing which is come to pass… And they came with haste, and found Mary, and Joseph, and the babe lying in a manger.” (Luke 2:8-16)

The Shepherds had surely heard the words of the Prophets of old, and their prophecy of the coming of the Son of God, upon seeing the Multitude of Heavenly Hosts, sing “Glory to God in the highest” they knew that the Lord had been born and immediately went to see their King. The Star in the East could be seen, round about the world…

                “Now when Jesus was born in Bethlehem Judaea… there came wise men from the east to Jerusalem, Saying, Where is he that is born King of the Jews? For we have seen his star in the east, and are come to worship him. When Herod the king had heard these things, he was troubled…And he sent them [the wise men] to Bethlehem, and said, Go and search diligently for the young child; and when ye have found him, bring me word… that I may come and worship him also… they departed; and, lo, the star, which they saw in the east, went before them, till it came and stood over where the child was. When they saw the star, they rejoiced…And when they were come…they saw the young child with Mary…and fell down, and worshipped him: and when they had opened their treasures, they presented unto him gift; gold, and frankincense, and myrrh.” (Matthew 2:1-3; 8-11)

                The Wise Men, in most accounts are referred to ask the “Three Wise Men”, most likely because of the three gifts (gold, frankincense, and myrrh) that are given to Jesus. However the scriptures never tell us how man wise men there were. Nevertheless, the wise men are warned in a dream to depart and not to return unto Herod, for he had other plans…

                “And being warned of God in a dream that they should not return to Herod, they departed into their own country…when they departed, behold the angel of the Lord appeareth to Joseph in a dream, saying, Arise, and take the young child and his mother, and flee into Egypt… for Herod will seek the young child to destroy him.” (Matthew 2:12-13)

                “…Herod, when he saw that he was mocked of the wise men, was exceeding wroth, and sent forth, and slew all the children that were in Bethlehem, and inall the coasts thereof, from two years and under…” (Matthew 2:16)

                Herod, fearing that the Son of God had been born, attempts a cowardly action of killing all children age 2 and below. However, God the Father had other plans and protected His Only Begotten Son, so that He might go among the world and die for everyone and their sins, to enable us to return again one day to Our Heavenly Father…

                “For God so loved the world that he gave his only begotten Son, that whosoever believeth in him should not perish, but have everlasting life. For God sent not his Son into the world to condemn not the world; but that the world through him might be saved.” (John 3:16-17)

                God knew of the divine plan of His Son, and allowed Him to grow strong in the spirit. For God was with Him; “And the child grew, and waxed strong in spirit, filled with wisdom: and the grace of God was upon him.” (Luke 2:40)

                The Bible teaches clearly that Jesus is the Christ and that through Him we might be saved, and given the opportunity to return to live with God. However, it is important to note that the Star in the East was seen throughout the World! The Ancient Inhabitants of the Americas saw the Star too, and their account is written in the Book of Mormon, which also testifies of Christ and His divine mission. A Book of Mormon Prophet named Alma, testified of Jesus Christ…

                “…I will testify unto you of myself that these things are true. Behold, I say unto you, that I do know that Christ shall come among the children of men, to take upon him the transgression of his people, and that he shall atone for the sins of the world; for the Lord God hath spoken it. For it is expedient that an atonement should be made; for according to the great plan of the Eternal God there must be an atonement made, or else all mankind must unavoidably perish… yea, all are fallen and are lost, and must perish except it be through the atonement which it is expedient should be made. For it is expedient that there should be a great and last sacrifice; yea, not a sacrifice of man, neither of beast, neither of any manner of fowl; for it shall not be a human sacrifice; but it must be an infinite and eternal sacrifice.” (Alma 34:8-10, The Book of Mormon)

What Does the Book of Mormon Say?

                Shortly before the Birth of Jesus Christ, people lived in Ancient Americas, where God also called Prophets to guide His children. One of these Prophets was named Samuel, and Samuel testified of Christ and His coming into this world. However, there was a great division of believers and non-believers. Those who did not believe, decided that that time of preaching Christ’s coming was to come to an end…

“…it came to pass that… the prophecies of the prophets began to be fulfilled more fully; for there were greater signs and greater miracles wrought among the people. But there were some who began to say that the time was past for the words to be fulfilled, which were spoken of by Samuel, the Lamanite. And they began to rejoice over their brethren, saying: Behold the time is past, and the words of Samuel are not fulfilled therefore your joy and your faith concerning this things hath been vain… and the people who believed began to be very sorrowful…But behold, they did watch steadfastly for that day and that night and that day which should be as one day as if it were no night, that they might know that their faith had not been in vain.” (3 Nephi 1:4-8, Book of Mormon)

Samuel the Lamanite (A Prophet in Ancient America) had told his believers that the sign of Christ’s birth would come when the sun would go down, but no darkness would come. The unbelievers grew impatient and set a date to which the sign must be accomplished for them to “believe”…

“…it came to pass that there was a day set apart by the unbelievers, that all those who believed in those traditions should be put to death except the sign should come to pass, which had been given by Samuel the prophet… when Nephi… saw this wickedness… he went out and bowed himself down upon the earth, and cried mightily to his God in behalf of his people… and behold, the voice of the Lord came unto him, saying: Lift up your head and be of good cheer; for behold, the time is at hand, and on this night shall the sign be given, and on the morrow come I into this world, to show unto the world that I will fulfill all that which I have caused to be spoken by the mouths of the prophets. Behold, I come unto my own, to fulfill all things which I have made known unto the children of men from the foundation of the world … and this night shall the sign be given.” (3 Nephi 1:9-14, The Book of Mormon)

Nephi, seeing the wickedness and disbelief of the people bowed humbly in prayer before his maker, and was heard! The Lord told him to be of good cheer, for he would soon come into the world, to fulfill all that was prophesied by prophets of old…

“And it came to pass that the words which came unto Nephi were fulfilled… at the going down of the sun there was no darkness; and the people began to be astonished because there was no darkness when the night came. And there were many, who had not believed the words of the prophets, who fell to the earth… for they knew… they began to know that the Son of God must shortly appear… and it came to pass that there was no darkness in all the night… the son did rise in the morning again, according to its proper order; and they knew that it was the day that the Lord should be born, because of the sign which had been given…. A new star did appear…” (3 Nephi 1:15-21, The Book of Mormon)

When the evening came, and then the night, the sun did not go down. This made many who believed and disbelieved to fall to the earth in fear. However, the sign had been given, fulfilled and a new star did appear. The announcement of the coming of Jesus Christ did not just come unto the people of the old world, in the Middle East. Rather, God the Father made the announcement to ALL His Children, in ALL parts of the world. The Book of Mormon: Another Testament of Jesus Christ teaches of His divine mission, and anyone who thoughtfully and prayerfully reads it will come closer to Him.

This Christmas, remember CHRISTmas, for Jesus Christ came unto the world, to be rejected and die for all the sins of mankind so that we might be given the gift of Salvation and Eternal Life.

Luke 2

Luke 2: Birth of Jesus Christ

                In the days of Caesar Augustus, he commanded that everyone be taxed and return to their city of lineage to be taxed. Joseph and Mary returned to the City of Bethlehem, there May brought forth her first born son, and

“…wrapped him in swaddling clothes, and laid him in a manger; because there was no room for them in the inn. And there were in the same country shepherds abiding in the field, keeping watch over their flock by night. And, lol, the angel of the Lord came upon them: and the glory of the Lord shone round about them: and they were sore afraid. And the angel sad unto them, Fear not: for, behold, I bring you good tidings of great joy, which shall be to all people. For unto you is born this day in the city of David a Saviour, which is Christ the Lord. And this shall be a sign unto you; Ye shall find the babe wrapped in swaddling clothes, lying in a manger. And suddenly there was with the angel a multitude of heavenly host praising God, and saying, Glory to God in the highest, and on earth peace, good will toward men.” (Luke 2:7-14)

Once the angels had gone away, the Shepherds all made haste to see the child, and they found Him lying in a manger. After eight days the child was circumcised and He was called, Jesus. There was a man named Simeon who was just and devout. The Holy Ghost told him that before he died he would see the Lord’s Christ. Upon seeing him, he was filled with joy and said; “Lord, now lettest thou thy servant depart in peace, according to thy word: For mine eyes have seen thy salvation.” (Luke 2:29-30)

A prophetess named Ana also came to proclaim of the greatest of Jesus. After they had performed all things in the Law of Moses they returned to the City of Nazareth where Jesus “…grew, and waxed strong in spirit, filled with wisdom and the grace of God was upon him.” (Luke 2:40)

Every year Joseph and Mary would return to Jerusalem for the Feast of the Passover, Jesus being 12 years of age traveled with them, but stayed behind without His parents knowing. When the parents returned to Jerusalem they found Jesus sitting for three days in the temple; “…sitting in the midst of doctors, both hearing them, and asking them questions. And all that heard of him were astonished at his understanding and answers. And when they saw him, they were amazed; and his mother said unto him, Son, why hast thou thus dealt with us? Behold, thy father and I have south thee sorrowing. And he said unto them, How is it that ye sought me? Wist ye no that I must be about my Father’s business? And they understood not the saying which he spake unto them.” (Luke 2:46-50)

                Both Joseph and Mary were confused by this, of course Jesus was speaking of His Father’s business, not that of Joseph’s, but of Heavenly Father’s business. Jesus “…increased in wisdom and stature, and in favour with God and man.” (Luke 2:52)

Luke 1

Luke 1: John the Baptist

                This chapter or ‘account’ was written to Theophilus (which means ‘Friend of God’) Because of the use “…most excellent…” (Luke 1:3), Theophilus seems to be an actual personage.;

In the days of Herod, who was the King of Judaea, a priest named Zacharias had a wife [Elisabeth], who was barren. While attending to his duties in the temple, Zacharias had an angel appear before him and speak to him; “…Fear not, Zacharias; for thy prayer is heard; and thy wife Elisabeth shall bear thee a son, and thou shalt call his name John [John the Baptist].” (Luke 1:13) The angel assures Zacharias that his son will bring him great joy and “…he shall be great in the sight of the Lord, and shall drink neither wine nor strong drink; and he shall be filled with the Holy Ghost, even from his mother’s womb.” (Luke 1:15) Why would John the Baptist be great in the sight of the Lord? Because he was pre-ordained to do so. Because of his calling and the ability to keep the presence of the Holy Ghost he would not drink wine or strong drink, why? Because these substances would only cloud his ability to feel the spirit of the Lord.

Zacharias explains to the angel that he is an old man and his wife is “…well stricken in years.” (Luke 1:18). The angel introduces himself as Gabriel and assures Zacharias that this will come to pass, but Gabriel tells Zacharias that he will not be able to speak until the day of his son’s birth. Months go by and Elisabeth conceives a son.

The angel Gabriel then goes to the city of Galilee, named Nazareth and appears to the virgin Mary, telling her that she will bear a son and his name shall be Jesus, who will “…be called the Son of the Highest” (Luke 1:32). Mary visits Elisabeth (who are cousins), Mary is perplexed because she has not known a single man (meaning she is a virgin), yet she is now pregnant. Elisabeth is filled with the Holy Ghost and tells Mary; “…Blessed art thou among women, and blessed is the fruit of thy womb.” (Luke 1:42)

After John was born, eight days later they came to circumcise the baby and called him ‘Zacharias’, but both Zacharias and Elisabeth refused and said that the child would be called ‘John’ and being filled with the Holy Ghost, Zacharias proclaims that his son shall be called; “…the prophet of the Highest: for thou shalt go before the face of the Lord to prepare his ways; To give knowledge of salvation unto his people by the remission of their sins. Through the tender mercy of our God… To give light to them that sit in darkness…” (Luke 1:76-79)

We end by learning about John the Baptist and how he “…grew, and waxed strong in spirit, and was in the deserts till the day of his shewing unto Israel.” (Luke 1:80)

Mark 16

Mark 16: Christ is Risen!

                After the Sabbath had passed, Mary Magdalene and Mary the mother of James, and Salome brought sweet spices to anoint Jesus. When they arrive at the tomb where Jesus was buried they find that the large stone had been rolled back and upon entering they were frightened by a young man sitting on the right side wearing a long white garment. The young man tells them to not be afraid, but to run and tell the Apostles that Jesus has risen.

Jesus appears first unto Mary Magdalene and then later to the eleven as they sat eating. The eleven were in disbelief, but Jesus commanded them; “…Go ye into all the world, and preach the gospel to every creature. He that believeth and is baptized shall be saved… these signs shall follow them that believe; In my name shall they cast out devils; they shall speak with new tongues.” (Mark 13:15-17)

                After He has finished talking to the Apostles, the Lord Jesus was taken up into heaven, to sit on the right hand of God.

Mark 3

Mark 3: Healing on the Sabbath

                A man comes near Jesus with a deformed hand, and the scribes stand by waiting to see if Jesus will heal the man on the Sabbath. Jesus perceives their hearts and simply asks them: “…Is it lawful to do good on the sabbath days. Or to do evil? To save a life, or to kill?” (Mark 3:4) Jesus heals the man and makes his hand whole. Immediately the scribes come together to charge Jesus!

Jesus travels throughout Galilee, Judea, Jerusalem, Idumea, Jordan, Tyre and Sidon all while being followed by a group of people. When Jesus spoke he usually spoke from a boat or had a small boat nearby, for fear that people would essentially “tackle Him”. Everyone who wanted to be healed of Him would come near and want to touch Him. Unclean spirits would cause those possessed to fall to the ground and weep for seeing the Son of God.

Jesus travels up a mountain with the twelve Apostles so that He could ordain them as Apostles (Those called by Jesus and given His priesthood Authority and Power) and not just as Disciples (those who follow Jesus). He ordains all of them with the ability to preach, and the power to heal sicknesses and cast out devils. After He finishes ordaining them, they all go to have a feast. While there, some scribes come and accuse Jesus of casting out devils by the power of Beelzebub (the devil). So Jesus says; “…How can Satan cast out Satan?” (Mark 3:23) Jesus goes on to explain that if a house or nation is divided it cannot stand, therefore if Satan is against himself, he also cannot stand. Jesus goes on even further to explain that those who deny the Holy Ghost are in danger of eternal damnation. Therefore, don’t deny the Holy Ghost!

One thing we learn here is that Jesus says “…whosoever shall do the will of God, the same is my brother, and my sister, and mother.” (Mark 3:35) Some will use this verse to explain that Jesus never had any direct brothers or sisters, that he was essentially an only child. Is this true? He is the Only Begotten of the Father, but Jesus was born of Mary, so did Mary have any more children? Because if she did, then they would at least be blood related half-brothers to Jesus. In Mark 6:3, we read: “Is not this the carpenter, the son of Mary, the brother of James, and Joses, and of Juda, and Simon? And are no his sisters here with us? …” (Mark 6:3) Therefore we learn that Jesus had siblings!

Matthew 28

Matthew 28:

Jesus Christ is Risen

christ2

At the end of the Sabbath, Mary Magdalene and the other Mary came to see the Sepulchre , where Jesus lay. As they were there, a great earthquake shook the earth and an angel appeared before them and said; “…Fear not ye: for I know that ye seek Jesus, which was crucified. He is not here: for he is risen, as he said… go quickly, and tell his disciples that he is risen from the dead…” (Matthew 28:5-7)

The women leave, running with great joy to go and tell the disciples. On their way to tell the disciples, Jesus intersects them, and they fall to His feet. Jesus tells them; “…Be not afraid: go tell my brethren that they go into Galilee, and there shall they see me.” (Matthew 28:10)

When the chief priests and elders found out what had happened, they go to the soldiers and pay them to lie. They tell them to say that the disciples of Jesus came and stole His body, while the soldiers slept. This obviously is not true, but deception and lies have been around forever, and are always the result of Satan’s work.

When the disciples meet Jesus, some are a little skeptical. But Jesus tells them; “…All power is given unto me in heaven and in earth. Go ye therefore, and teach all nations, baptizing them in the name of the Father, and of the Son, and of the Holy Ghost.” (Matthew 28:19) Jesus tells them that He will be with them until the end, but it is important that they spread His gospel.