Mark Series- Session 11: Responding to the Second Coming

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Mark 13:24-37

Discussion Question– What summer plans or events are you most anticipating?

Every believer can respond to the reality of the second coming by recognizing four components to Jesus’s teaching about His return.

Component #1- Chaos (v.1-25, 24-25)
Mar 13:24-25
(24) But in those days, after that tribulation, the sun shall be darkened, and the moon shall not give her light,
• “in those days”-
o Jesus started this teaching in response to the disciples
 1. Mentioning of the temple in verses 1-3 and
 2. Asking when that destruction of the temple would be.
o He uses this term in verses 17, 19 and 24 to speak about the times he is describing, sometime in the future.
o Some of the qualities he says about this time in verses 1-23
 False teaching (v.5-6)
 False Christ’s (v.5-6, 22)
 Wars (v.7-8)
 Earthquakes (v.8)
 Persecution (v.9)
 Gospel proclamation expanded (v.10)
 Betrayal (V.12-13)
 Abomination of Desolation spoken of in Daniel (v.14)
 Unprecedented affliction (v.19)
 False prophets (v.22)
(25) And the stars of heaven shall fall, and the powers that are in heaven shall be shaken.
 Sun moon and stars will be darkened (v. 24-25)
• It will be a time of unprecedented chaos.
• And in the midst of this chaos the world will see hope and wrath all in one moment…

Component #2- Coming (v.26-27)

Mar 13:26-27
(26) And then shall they see the Son of man coming in the clouds with great power and glory.
(27) And then shall he send his angels, and shall gather together his elect from the four winds, from the uttermost part of the earth to the uttermost part of heaven.
• Against the backdrop of chaos, war, spiritual wickedness and confusion we see Christ coming and conquering.
• It’s the story all others stories are pointing to. The hero comes to save the day. Why does this resonate with us? Because we long for all that is wrong to be made right. We long for justice. We long for resolution, and yet we realize that we are part of the dissonance.
• And Christ who was sacrificed, dead, is risen…and here He comes again!
• From the song, “In the Night”

And I can see the Son of Man descending
And the sword he swings is brighter than the dawn
And the gates of hell will never stand against him
And in the night, in the night, in the night my hope lives on!

• Here is some good news- We come with him. V. 27 says we’ll be gathered with him in His coming- those who have been redeemed. If you know Christ as Savior you will be on the right and winning side.
• Believers will be drawn from all over the world and in heaven.

Now let’s recognize the 3rd component of the teaching on Jesus’ return…

Component #3- Confirmation (v.28-31)

Mar 13:28-31
(28) Now learn a parable of the fig tree; When her branch is yet tender, and putteth forth leaves, ye know that summer is near:
• The fig tree was the plant in that area of the world with the most visible evidence to the season of the year.
• This was an agrarian culture, and so they would have been a lot more familiar with plant life and working than we are.
• But even we understand that leaves come to full fruition, and fruit is being born out during the summer. Winter is death, Spring is new life, Summer brings growth, and fall becomes the time for harvest.
(29) So ye in like manner, when ye shall see these things come to pass, know that it is nigh, even at the doors.
• When you see all that is described in verses 1-25, know that verse 26-27 are soon to come.
• How soon?
(30) Verily I say unto you, that this generation shall not pass, till all these things be done.
• How long is a generation? One lifetime? 60-70, 100 years?
• In the grand scheme of history and eternity, it’s not long.
• And then he gives this assurance…
(31) Heaven and earth shall pass away: but my words shall not pass away.
• Essentially, this prophecy is more long lasting and sure than the very earth that you are standing on.
• You can take my words to the bank.

This leads us to recognize the 4th component of the teaching on Jesus’ return…Our response…

Component #4- Commands (v.32-37)

Mar 13:32-37
(32) But of that day and that hour knoweth no man, no, not the angels which are in heaven, neither the Son, but the Father.
• The exact time is known only by the Father.
• Some believe that this is still true. Some believe it was true at the time that Jesus stated it.
• Now that Jesus has returned bodily to heaven does he know the exact time? Absolutely.
• The point is, for sure, we don’t know.
• There have been many who have tried to predict when Christ would come.
• Radio evangelist Harold Camping was so certain that the Rapture would occur on May 21, 2011 that he staked his entire reputation on it. His company, Family Radio, spent more than $5,000,000 on 5,000 billboards announcing the date and a media frenzy followed.
• A group I really enjoy wrote a song about the guy who did this… called “The 21st of May”

It’s time to bid this whole world goodbye
Oh, glory, time to fly away
We’ll meet our savior in the sky
Hallelujah, the 21st of May
Well, I’ve never been so sure
And I’ve never led no one astray
‘Cept in the fall of ’94
But Hallelujah, the 21st of May

• Unfortunately people trying to predict have made the return of Christ a mockery.
• But be sure…
(33) Take ye heed, watch and pray: for ye know not when the time is.
• Just because you don’t know when He’s coming back doesn’t mean that he’s not coming back.
• Then an illustration…
• What are the 2 commands?
o Watch
o Pray…
• Illustration…
(34) For the Son of man is as a man taking a far journey, who left his house, and gave authority to his servants, and to every man his work, and commanded the porter to watch.
(35) Watch ye therefore: for ye know not when the master of the house cometh, at even, or at midnight, or at the cockcrowing, or in the morning:
(36) Lest coming suddenly he find you sleeping.
(37) And what I say unto you I say unto all, Watch.
• Watch!
• Pray!

Discussion Questions:
1. As the chaos in the world “in those days” is described by Jesus, do you see any relation to that time and our time today? Explain.
2. What kind of response does Jesus return bring to the following people?
• An unbeliever?
• An immature believer?
• A spiritually mature believer?
3. 2 Commands were explicitly stated – watch and pray. What does each of these commands look like in your life this week?
4. Prayer Requests

Family Devotions and Discussions

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Familia

Mark 3:31-35 – Familia

31 There came then his brethren and his mother, and, standing without, sent unto him, calling him.

32 And the multitude sat about him, and they said unto him, Behold, thy mother and thy brethren without seek for thee.

33 And he answered them, saying, Who is my mother, or my brethren?

34 And he looked round about on them which sat about him, and said, Behold my mother and my brethren!

35 For whosoever shall do the will of God, the same is my brother, and my sister, and mother.

Today, we are looking at a passage that sometimes really stumps people about what in the world Jesus was talking about! After all, The Bible does tell us to honor our parents, so why would Jesus so blatantly turn away His own family? Jesus was making a point to all the people listening to Him. Jesus was showing them that those who follow Him were closer than His physical family because they were part of His spiritual family.

Family is a very interesting thing for Jesus to connect Him and His followers with. Families sometimes fight, they get mad at each other, they don’t always get along, but they are family, and that is what Christians are to Jesus. Jesus’ connection does not just apply to those people who were following Him back then. Jesus never put a time stamp on His statement! Anyone, even today, that does “the will of God” is part of Jesus’ family! But what does that mean? The first part of doing God’s will is to accept His gift of salvation and forgiveness of our sins. So, if you have taken that first step into Jesus’ family, you are like a brother or sister to Him! Of course, there is still a responsibility to get to know Him better (you don’t want to be one of those crazy cousins that nobody knows, after all), but John 1:12 tells us that if we receive Jesus, we enter into God’s family.

This idea of family has a very important application for us. If every Christian is part of God’s family, that means that, spiritually, every Christian is related. Just think about that for a second next time you are in church. Many of those people sitting there are your spiritual brothers or sisters, regardless of their age, race, looks, background, nationality, or anything. All it takes to be a part of this family is belief in Jesus Christ! That would also mean that we have a responsibility to do right by our brothers and sisters in Christ. Why people would gossip about, lie to, or not be their for  their brothers and sisters just makes no sense. We, as Christians, are God’s family, and we ought to act like it!

Life Step: Think about it…

Why is it so amazing that God would let us into His family?

In what kind of ways do people mistreat those in the spiritual family?

How should we treat our spiritual brothers and sisters?

The Strong Man

Mark 3:22-27 – The Strong Man

22 And the scribes which came down from Jerusalem said, He hath Beelzebub, and by the prince of the devils casteth he out devils.

23 And he called them unto him, and said unto them in parables, How can Satan cast out Satan?

24 And if a kingdom be divided against itself, that kingdom cannot stand.

25 And if a house be divided against itself, that house cannot stand.

26 And if Satan rise up against himself, and be divided, he cannot stand, but hath an end.

27 No man can enter into a strong man’s house, and spoil his goods, except he will first bind the strong man; and then he will spoil his house.

From yesterday’s passage, we see the same thing continuing to happen in Jesus’ ministry. He continues to heal people which bring in more people and causes the Pharisees to hate Him more and more. Now, Jesus’ main detractors, the Pharisees, try to turn people away from Jesus by telling them that He really is being used by Satan! Not only is this a lie, but blasphemy! Jesus rebukes them accordingly, too. He tells them that they crossed a big line from which they could not turn back. Before rebuking the Pharisees, Jesus first makes sure He shows how wrong their claim is. He tells them that if He was from Satan, why would he kick out demons from people? An army cannot go on killing it’s own people, after all!  In fact, Jesus takes the opportunity to show that the fact that He is casting out demons does not show that He is from the Devil, but stronger than the Devil! He tells them that if someone wants to rob a strong man (and the Devil is strong), He has to be stronger than the strong man to subdue Him, otherwise the strong man will beat him up. Jesus is saying that because He can cast out demons, Satan is weak compared to Christ.

For us, this passage is still very true today. First John 4:4 says, “greater is he that is in you, than he that is in the world.” The”He” in the world is Satan. The Devil is very real and very powerful, but we must remember that, compared to God, He is weak! Also, it is important to remember that Christ is also greater than any kind of sin or temptation we could face. Whatever comes at us through life, we have a God who has already beaten it. It does not matter what kind of struggle you have or had, God is greater than them and he has provided a way through Jesus Christ. Jesus, and the salvation that is from Him, can forgive our sins, give us the strength to forgive others, show us that we do not have to be guilty of what we did in the past, shows us that we are loved, and any number of other things! Whatever you face, Jesus has already beaten it, just like in His illustration with the strong man.

Life Step: Think about it…

Why did Jesus use the example of the strong man? What does it mean for us?

What kind of things do people struggle with that Jesus has already beaten?

Getting on People’s Bad Side

Mark 3:1-6 – Getting on People’s Bad Side

1  And he entered again into the synagogue; and there was a man there which had a withered hand.

And they watched him, whether he would heal him on the sabbath day; that they might accuse him.

And he saith unto the man which had the withered hand, Stand forth.

And he saith unto them, Is it lawful to do good on the sabbath days, or to do evil? to save life, or to kill? But they held their peace.

And when he had looked round about on them with anger, being grieved for the hardness of their hearts, he saith unto the man, Stretch forth thine hand. And he stretched it out: and his hand was restored whole as the other.

And the Pharisees went forth, and straightway took counsel with the Herodians against him, how they might destroy him.

In today’s passage, Jesus now really finds Himself getting on people’s bad side. As Jesus was in the Synagogue, a man with a withered hand was also there. Jesus asked the people if it was also wrong to heal someone on the Sabbath, since they had criticized Him for gathering food on the same day. The Pharisees, of course, were looking for any excuse to criticize Jesus and what He was doing. Jesus went ahead and healed the man, so the Pharisees went to the Herodians, who were a group of Jews who just wanted to keep peace with Rome no matter what, and tried to figure out a way to “destroy” Jesus! What was Jesus’ crime? He healed a man on the Sabbath, and that was enough to put Him on People’s bad side to the point where they wanted to destroy Him.

As a Christian, when we try to do the right things, there are going to be people who just don’t like it. Sometimes there is no way to avoid getting on someone’s bad side. When you take a stand for what is right, people who only want to do what’s wrong won’t like it. That’s okay! As Christians, we do not have to get everyone to like us. Jesus was the Son of God and, in today’s passage, the Pharisees are trying to figure out how to destroy Him! Don’t worry if people like or don’t like you. Just do what God says and He will take care of the rest.

Life Step: Think about it…

In what situations do people get mad at Christians who stand up for something right?

What should our response be when people get mad at us for wanting to do what is right?