By: Waylon Bailey
Sunday I had the blessing of preaching from God‘s Word. It’s always a blessing and a privilege, but it’s also very difficult.
That difficulty comes because it matters so much and because it is so important.
I preached from Mark 11:27 through 12:34. While I didn’t preach about all of the passage, I emphasized four questions that were asked of Jesus.
These were provocative questions. They were asked to ensnare Jesus and destroy His ministry and effectiveness.
It’s interesting because the first three questions were definitely asked to harm Jesus. To those questions, he really didn’t answer.
The first question had to do with His authority. They wanted to know where He received His authority.
A second question had to do with whether or not they should pay taxes to Rome. This too was designed to trap Jesus. He told them to give to Caesar the things that are Caesar’s and to give to God the things that are God’s.
The third question had to do with the Sadducees and their disdain for Jesus’ teaching about eternal life. They told a silly – – to me – – description of a woman who had had seven husbands but had had no children. They asked Jesus whose wife she would be in the resurrection.
Jesus responded in this way: “You know neither the Scripture nor the power of God.”
The fourth question was different in tone and in attitude. Based on what I see in the Scripture, this was a serious question by someone who needed an answer.
This man wanted to know which was the greatest commandment. Jesus answered the question forthrightly. He told him that the greatest commandment is to love God with all of your being (Deuteronomy 6:4-6).
He even took the answer a step farther by telling him that the second commandment is like unto it: “love your neighbor as you love yourself.”
The difference in those four questions had to do with motive. When a person comes to God with honest questions, God responds to our questions. He wants us to know and follow Him. He wants us to know who He is and how He works in the world.
And, He wants us to be like Him.
Let me encourage you to ask God to show you who He is. Ask Him to make Himself and His way known to you so that you might become like Him.
When you do so, you’ll find that God will make Himself known as you open yourself to Him in repentance and faith.
Have a great week!