My notes (and questions) from reading the Book of Mark recently:
Ch. 1 – Oppression is a work of Satan carried out by his demonic angels (verses 21- 32, and many more). It seems that demon-possessed people were often encountered in the synagogue. Christian men need to stand against demon-possessed/oppressed people who are in our churches.
Ch. 2 – Was Jesus in His own house when the four men brought their paralyzed friend to Him, tearing up His house’s roof in the process (verses 1, 4)? Perhaps it was the family home. At any rate, He apparently sometimes lived there.
Ch. 3 – In verse 5, Jesus was angered, in church, because of the hardness of people’s hearts. What other times was Jesus angry, and where? It seems like every time He was angry, it was in and regarding “church.”
Preach the Word. Exercise heavenly authority. Battle demonic forces. These appear to be the call-to-arms for every believer (verses 14-15).
In verses 31-35, where is Joseph, Jesus’ earthly father?
Ch. 5 – Believers are “possessed,” or rather filled, by only one spirit: the Holy Spirit. There are numerous demonic spirits or unclean spirits, that can possess, and regularly oppress, unbelievers (verses 1-2, and many more).
Unbound power, unending power, unstoppable power, unhidden power… this is the power of Jesus. In verse 31, Jesus asked, “Who touched Me?” If the clothing of God which clothes the saints is His righteousness, then who dares to touch His clothes, except those who want to be washed in the Blood of Jesus? Any other touch is a profane and ugly attempt to soil His Glory – an utterly vain attempt at that. See also Mark 6:56.
Ch. 7 – What goes into the stomach has to do with Jesus having declared all food clean (v. 19). It has nothing to do with alcohol, drugs, gluttony, or other sinfully consumed vices.
Ch. 8 – No one, no government, no thing can bring about blessings like Jesus does (v. 15). These cannot multiply a molecule (their leaven is powerless) but Jesus can multiply blessings beyond count. Note that the disciples had forgotten about His miracles of multiplication, having to be reminded by Jesus of the count of baskets left over – and even then it was unknown how many loaves were in each basket!
Ch. 9 – Those people and governments who cause children to sin would be better off dead (v. 42). What should we do as Christian men to battle against those who lead children into sin? That, of course, is God’s business. Jesus did mention cutting them off like a bad hand or foot or eye (verses 42-50). Notice that these body parts represent the deeds people do (hand), the places people go (foot), and the things people view (eye). A severed body part will eventually rot away while the living body that remains can be saved.
Ch. 10 – In verse 18, Jesus asked, “Why do you call Me good?” That’s a strange question coming from the Lord. But Jesus’ follow-up statement, that God alone is good, seems to me to infer that the man should have called or confessed JESUS IS LORD. The man addressed Jesus twice but never as Lord.
The healed blind man’s way was to go the way of Jesus. He had a choice and chose well (v. 52).
Ch. 11 – The fig tree with its fruit sustains physical life. But more is needed than temporary sustenance; the time for that type of tree was over. It was time for the stuff of eternal life, the stuff that only a tree like the Cross could provide. It was time to “Have faith in God,” through Jesus Christ His Son, the Redeemer of the world (verses 12-26).
Ch. 12 – In the parable of the vineyard owner, a pit for the wine press was dug. It is not referenced again (except that to assume, in the parable, it meant that a complete wine-making enterprise was set up). The parables of Jesus are about the kingdom of God, that is, heaven. Does the pit reference hell having been created for the devil and his angels (Matthew 25:41)? Does the pit and wine press prophetically cite Jesus, who in the end, treads the wine press of the fierceness and wrath of Almighty God (Revelation 19:15)?
Opinions of men don’t matter. God’s Word matters. Even the heathen and pagans know that Christians will “teach the way of God in truth” (v. 14). Christian men, teach the Truth.
Ch. 13 – Jesus implores believers to pray that the end will not be in the winter (v. 18). We and He might not know when the end will come – only the Heavenly Father knows that – but since Jesus told us to pray that it does not happen in the winter, then perhaps we as Christian men can intercede or influence the timing of the end. The effective, fervent prayer of a righteous man avails much (James 5:16).
And speaking of the end of time, what is the complete, underlying meaning of the command of Jesus to watch (v. 39)?
Ch. 14 – Conception begins life, of course, and perhaps it also begins one’s spirit. Otherwise, Judas’ spirit would “exist” in some form prior to being born (v. 21). Is the “spark of life,” that is, when life begins, the “spirit of life?” Note that when the spirit departs, one is dead; when the spirit returns, one is alive (Luke 8:55).
The spirit and the flesh are interrelated (v. 38) but also fight against each other (Galatians 5:16-26).
Ch. 16 – Why was Peter singled out separately from the other (10) disciples (v. 7)?