With the second to last part of our Gospel of Mark Series, Pastors Chris and Lauren lead us through discussion questions focused on the Christ journey to the cross and ultimately His death for all of humanity. This part of Mark and specifically chapters 14 and 15 are focused on the final moment of Christ before His death. We are officially in the heart of Passion Week.
Starting in the scene recorded in Mark 14 of what we know as the Last Supper in the Upper Room. You might have heard it known or called Maundy Thursday; just a few hours or so before Jesus would be betrayed by Judas and arrested in the Garden of Gethsemane. Which then would lead into Jesus going before various governmental leaders. And ultimately be beaten, flogged, mocked, denied, forced to carry His own cross and crucified.
So as we go through this scripture and teaching and questions. You are hearing and reading of the final moments of Jesus up to the fulfillment of His entire mission and purpose for coming to earth. This was the whole point of Jesus coming. Jesus was the gift from God, the fulfilled promise of the restoration of all of humanity. The ultimate sacrifice to put away all other temporary temple sacrifices.
I cannot even begin to imagine what is going through Jesus mind. We see a glimpse of the turmoil and inner struggle in the Garden when Jesus is praying in Mark 14:36, “Abba, Father,” he said, “everything is possible for you. Take this cup from me. Yet not what I will, but what you will.” God is there is any other way to do this, please??But if not, I understand. Your will, Your plan, not my own.
Wow! Jesus knows what God’s plan is. One of immense pain in all aspects: physical, emotional, and spiritual. And at the same time, Christ knows what the outcome will bring. Hope, Grace, Mercy, Peace, and so much more! This is the reason that we do what we do. This is the culmination of everything. Our purpose as Christians. Our hope for eternity! The reason that we wake up in the morning and the reason we keep doing church online even when we cannot meet. Why we Love God and Love Others! This is it!
Jesus’ selfless, giving of Himself, willing sacrifice on the cross. Just let that sink in for a moment. And yet it all starts in the upper room with Jesus sitting down with those that he knows are going to turn their backs in Him. Loving them with a love that our minds cannot even comprehend.
- What does it say about Jesus’s love for us that He wants to spend time with us?
- Despite the truth that He knows everything about us?
- How does Jesus’s anguish in the garden, anticipating His coming suffering, help you identify with Christ more closely?
- As you listened to Francis tell the story of the Last Supper, the events in Gethsemane, the journey to the cross and ultimately Christ’s death, what emotions surfaced in you toward Jesus?
- What does Jesus’s title of Messiah mean for you?
- In what ways do you profit from his coming, all these years later?1
- How have your eyes been opened to the greatness of the gospel message?
- How should we respond?