My posts come from my personal daily scripture readings and a part of my personal accountability. If we are going to grow as followers of Christ, we must be in the Word! If you miss these a few days, something has kept me from it; but if they're gone for too many days, call me on the carpet. We need to hold one another accountable. Join me on this journey as our lives are to Reflect the Image-and Jesus IS the image. Peace, Carla Sunberg
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Do You Not Yet Understand?
Thelma Sunberg's "Nazarene Buns" -- yeast rolls, a family tradition for the holidays.
Mark 8:14 Now the disciples had forgotten to bring any bread; and they had only one loaf with them in the boat. 15 And he cautioned them, saying, “Watch out—beware of the yeast of the Pharisees and the yeast of Herod.” 16 They said to one another, “It is because we have no bread.” 17 And becoming aware of it, Jesus said to them, “Why are you talking about having no bread? Do you still not perceive or understand? Are your hearts hardened? 18 Do you have eyes, and fail to see? Do you have ears, and fail to hear? And do you not remember? 19 When I broke the five loaves for the five thousand, how many baskets full of broken pieces did you collect?” They said to him, “Twelve.” 20 “And the seven for the four thousand, how many baskets full of broken pieces did you collect?” And they said to him, “Seven.” 21 Then he said to them, “Do you not yet understand?”
The Pharisees had just asked Jesus for a sign from heaven so that they would accept his authority. Now, Jesus is out on the boat with his disciples and he begins to talk to them about the yeast of the Pharisees and Herod. Suddenly they are talking about bread again. In many ways this parallels the lack of understanding of the Pharisees, which is the yeast that can so easily infuse the lives of the disciples.
Were the disciples looking for a sign? Did Jesus need to produce more bread for them to believe that he loved and cared for them?Jesus reiterates what he has done for them, reminding them about what they have seen and experienced. The twelve baskets full of broken pieces was a reminder that God would provide what was needed for each and every disciple. The seven baskets full of broken pieces were a reminder of the perfection of completion to be found in Christ.
In another moment of exasperation Jesus asks, “Do you not yet understand?”
It’s so easy to point our fingers at the Pharisees and their lack of faith. This scene brings home the question of faith. Over and over again the Lord has revealed his faithfulness to his disciples and yet, even those closest to him seem to fail to understand. The disciples have heard the challenges and the doubts from the religious leaders and they, too, are left wondering.
There is so much noise in this world that is begging for our attention. The ability to use digital and social media has created a cacophony of sound that can, at times, make it difficult to hear and discern the voice of the Lord. This is the yeast of the Pharisees. Anything that distracts our attention from knowing Jesus Christ, his power, and his authority will be yeast in our lives. The result will be perceiving, but not understanding. Our hearts will be hardened to the needs of others. We will have eyes but we will fail to see the truth. We will have ears but we won’t be listening. Our memories will fade away and we won’t remember the things that Jesus has done for us.
Let’s move away from the yeast and live in faith. We recall what Christ has done in the past and then remember that Jesus is still with us reminding us, “I’ve got this!”
Lord, open my eyes to hear, my eyes to see, my heart to love, and my mind to your wisdom. Amen.
Rom. 6:22 But now that you have been freed from sin and enslaved to God, the advantage you get is sanctification. The end is eternal life. Rom. 6:23 For the wages of sin is death, but the free gift of God is eternal life in Christ Jesus our Lord.
Two sides of life are presented here in great contrast. One is a life of sin and enslavement to evil. The other side of life is freedom which provides the advantage of sanctification (or holiness as some translate the word) that leads to eternal life. The options here are a life of sin, slavery and death; or freedom, holiness and eternal life.
The advantage of holiness or sanctification is the benefit of the life of freedom. Jesus died so that we might be made holy like him and this is something that is offered as a “fruit” or “advantage” right now. The end is eternal life — but the living of life is that it can be lived out in holiness.
The next verse is really just an affirmation of the verse 22. Sin will lead …
Ex. 33:4 ¶ When the people heard these harsh words, they mourned, and no one put on ornaments. Ex. 33:5 For the LORD had said to Moses, “Say to the Israelites, ‘You are a stiff-necked people; if for a single moment I should go up among you, I would consume you. So now take off your ornaments, and I will decide what to do to you.’” Ex. 33:6 Therefore the Israelites stripped themselves of their ornaments, from Mount Horeb onward.
The people had sinned before God by making and worshiping the golden calf! They had taken their golden jewelry — the earrings and other items they had gotten from the Egyptians and used them to create an idol. Now, in an act of humility and repentance they were to take off all of their jewelry and ornaments. It was a time of mourning over their sin and it included intentional action on the part of the Israelites. Application:
We don’t do all that well with humility and repentance! It seems that we live in a time when we try to carry on…
Scripture: Mark 8:31 Then he began to teach them that the Son of Man must undergo great suffering, and be rejected by the elders, the chief priests, and the scribes, and be killed, and after three days rise again. 32 He said all this quite openly. And Peter took him aside and began to rebuke him. 33 But turning and looking at his disciples, he rebuked Peter and said, “Get behind me, Satan! For you are setting your mind not on divine things but on human things.” Observation:
Peter had openly declared that Jesus was the Messiah when suddenly the conversation shifted to suffering, rejection and death. With his affirmation of Jesus as Messiah, Peter had brought with him all of the connotations of that term. Jesus was to be a great military leader, a Davidic Messiah, who would save the people from the earthly authorities. Jesus’ description was a paradigm that didn’t fit into Peter’s thinking.
Peter’s rebuke of Jesus was severe. The language reflects a long and unpleasant conversation. The…