Leading up to Sunday, January 24th
, As Mark writes to show us the person and ministry of Jesus, we see Him facing questions and opposition from the religious leaders of the day, the Pharisees. This week’s Bible reading, contemplation, and questions are focused on the second half of chapter two and the first part of chapter three.
Jesus has called four men to follow Him, and this passage begins with Jesus calling another. As these five men are following Jesus (and doing what He says), Jesus comes under fire from the Pharisees. How He handles their questions and leads His people reveals something extraordinary about Him: He is the Lord God, Himself!
Mark 2:13 – 3:12
Consider and discuss these questions:
- In verses 13-17, Jesus calls Levi to follow Him. What is different about Levi than the first four men Jesus called to be His disciples (1:16-19)? Were the religious leaders wrong in their assessment of Levi that he was a sinner? What was Jesus’ answer to the Pharisee’s question, “Why does He eat with tax collectors and sinners?”
- In verses 18-22, Jesus answers another question from the Pharisees, this one about fasting. What was the question? What do you think He meant when Jesus said something about pouring new wine into new wineskins?
- In verses 23-27, once more, the Pharisees question Jesus, asking “Look, why are they doing what is unlawful on the Sabbath?” Read Exodus 20:8-11 for insight into the Sabbath that God commanded. Then, read Mark 2:28. What do you think Jesus meant?
- In chapter three verses 1-6, Jesus entered the synagogue on the Sabbath. What were some of the people looking for? Did they consider it lawful to heal on the Sabbath? What did Jesus say about healing on the Sabbath in verse 4? Why do you think the response of the Pharisees was to start looking for a way to kill Jesus?
- What part of this passage from the Bible stands out to you today?