Nepaug Bible Church - http://www.nepaugchurch.org - Pastor's Prayer Meeting Lesson Notes - http://www.nepaugchurch.org/pm/pm19960724.htm
MARK: GOSPEL OF THE SERVICE OF CHRIST, GOD'S SERVANT
Part XXIII: Serving God With Boundless Grace Toward Those Needing To Be Discipled
Lesson: As Jesus is our example in serving God (cf. Phil. 2:5-8), and as He met the needs of ALL of the unworthy people He met who, in their ignorance begged the grace of God to the limit, and that when Jesus and His disciples were humanly drained, we, too must minister with boundless grace in the Holy Spirit's power to undeserving people whenever they trust in God!
- In serving the Lord, the Christian is called to make disciples of people who are sinners.
- However, sin by its very nature makes one often uncooperative with God, and sinners can thus be so stuck in their sin and blind to their need that the discipler must go to great lengths with him to get the job done.
- Just how gracious the disciple maker should go when discipling sinners is exampled for us by Christ:
- Serving God With Boundless Grace Toward Those Needing To Be Discipled, Mark 6:53-56.
- Mark 6:53 reports that as soon as Jesus with His disciples had landed their boat at the shore of Gennesaret, the people recognized Him and began gathering the sick from the whole region to Jesus to be healed.
- In fact, as Jesus began to move about from village to village, there were so many desiring to be healed that they begged just to touch the tassels of His garment to be healed, Mk. 6:56; Bib.Know.Com., N.T., p. 132.
- The boundless grace of Jesus toward these people is noted when we understand the background involved:
- First, Christ was gracious in expending the energy and attention to meet these demands by the sick:
- This event followed a series of humanly draining events: (a) upon receiving the twelve from their exhausting ministry of healing the sick and preaching the gospel, Jesus had urged them to follow Him to a wilde rness retreat, 6:30-31a. (b) This retreat was necessary as the men had missed meals due to the demands of the crowds, 6:31b. (c) Yet, their effort to escape was cut off by the pursuing crowds, and the exhausted disciples got involved in the of feeding the crowds, 6:32-44. (d) Upon finishing this job, the twelve were urged quickly by the Lord to depart by boat across the water, and these men spent a sleepless night in a storm until Jesus had come and settled the storm, 6:45-52. (e) In the process, the disciples experienced terror, thinking Jesus' appearance on the water was an apparition; Jesus settled the men, but the event was emotionally and spiritually exhausting, 6:50-51.
- Thus, with all of these preceding events behind them, when their boat finally made land at morning, the disciples and Jesus were physically, emotionally, mentally and spiritually exhausted, Mark 6:53.
- For Christ to minister to all of these hordes of needy people both from larger towns and smaller villages and even countryside at such a time was very gracious, Mark 6:54-56.
- Second, Christ was gracious in being willing to heal THESE unworthy Hebrews under the Law!
- In Christ's era, Israel was under the Mosaic Covenant, an arrangement where the physical health of people in Israel was in direct proportion to their individual obedience to the Law, cf. Dt. 7:12,15.
- Thus, these hordes of people swarming about Jesus, desiring His healing were hordes of sinners under judgment by God with various maladies for disobedience to God's Law!
- Thus, Jesus was gracious in being willing to heal these unworthy ill people under the Law!
- Third, Christ was gracious in being willing to heal unworthy Hebrews the WAY they asked for help!
- Swarms of people requested to touch the tassel fringes of Jesus' garment for healing, Mk. 6:56; Ibid.
- These tassels were worn by the upright in Israel in fulfillment of Numbers 15:37-41, Ibid.
- These tassels were of blue chord to remind those fellow Hebrews seeing them to obey the Law for blessing, cf. Num. 15:38b-39.
- So, for Hebrews who were sick and thus under divine discipline for disobeying the Law (see C,2 above with Dt. 7:12,15) to wish to touch Jesus' tassels that were a reminder to HEED the Law they had not heeded, and that to be healed, was for them to beg the grace of God to the LIMIT!
- Yet, though His human reserves to minister were so low, all of the infirmed from all of the larger towns AND smaller villages BESIDES RURAL COUNTRYSIDE through which Jesus passed who imposed upon Him to touch His tassels in faith were healed, Mark 6:56b! Jesus' grace to minister to those who trusted in Him was boundless!