Class Notes: 1/7/2015
Mark 12:40- Mark 13:1; The example of the poor widow; God keeps His promises no matter how evil the rulers are
In our study of Mark last time we stopped in Mark 12:40; where we saw Jesus condemnation of the Jewish leaders for taking advantage of and stealing from widows while using long prayers in public as a pretense or rhetorical veil to advance their evil hidden agenda.
We saw that this is exactly what the evil politicians in our country are doing. They speak of "the greater good" while at the same time stealing with their evil socialist Marxist fascist agenda.
"These" evil leaders "will receive greater condemnation" because those who are in positions of power and authority have a greater responsibility to God for their actions because their actions adversely affect people.
Those who have been wronged simply need to take their case to the supreme court of Heaven for it to be adjudicated and Jesus will render His perfect judgment in His perfect timing because our Lord promises to avenge this evil, Rom 12:19;
The proper response to evil leaders is to commit their evil to the supreme court of heaven for adjudication not become crusaders who rally, march, or riot in protest because that simply compounds the evil and removes the matter from the Lord's judicial agenda because we have taken matters into our own hands.
The anger of man does not perform the righteousness of God. James 1:20;
The correct response is simply to prayerfully place it in the hands of the Lord and wait on Him. Isa 40:31;
Job 8:20; tells us that God will not reject the person with integrity nor will He support evildoers. God is fair so He does not give respect or deference to people but He does respect and give deference to people who think His Word. Isa 66:2;
Jesus goes on to make his point with the example of a poor widow in the next couple of verses where He shows that it is possible for the poor to be generous and to glorify God in the use of whatever money they have left after being plundered by the evil politicians.
Mark 12:41; And He sat down opposite the treasury box in the temple, and (Jesus) began to watch the crowd putting their money into the treasury; and many rich people were their contributing large sums. Net note 82
Mark 12:42; A poor widow came and put in two small copper coins, worth a fraction of a penny. Net note 83
Mark 12:43; And (Jesus), calling His disciples, said to them, `I tell you the truth, this poor widow put in more money than all the rich contributing to this treasury;
Mark 12:44; for they all gave from their profits, but she, out of her poverty, put in everything she owned, all she had to live on.'" Net note 88
The widow was helpless and without a family. Yet she had great faith-rest. She knew she was going to be alive on this earth as long as the Lord had a purpose for it.
She was not concerned about putting in her last bit of money. She was not security conscious; her security was the Lord. She did not feel sorry for herself. She was not trying to attract any self-pity. She didn't know Jesus was watching.
She was grace-oriented and doctrinally oriented. She had personal love for God the Father that motivated her. She shared God's happiness, had a personal sense of destiny, and was occupied with the person of Christ.
We see from this that it isn't the amount that is given, but the mental attitude in giving. 2Cor 9:7; She was giving as an act of worship. And worship doesn't depend on the amount you give. In fact, you can give nothing and have the right mental attitude that God honors.
Remember giving is ritual. Reality is how you think about giving. If you don't have the right attitude in giving the giving is meaningless ritual without reality so don't bother to give because God does not honor it.
The Lord was not criticizing the others who gave because there is nothing wrong with giving from your profits. In fact that is the normally the case.
God's grace prospers His Word. This means that God prospers the establishment principles of private property, freedom, and the volitional choice to work hard in free enterprise capitalism where the profits that are created can be used for whatever purpose the owner chooses including the choice to praise God in giving.
Mark 13:1; "And as Jesus was going out of the temple." The principle here is that Jesus walked out of the temple and it's religion, He refused to be identified with religion in any manner; "He departed from the temple." He kept walking until He was out of the temple.
During his reproof of the scribes and Pharisees He was in the great hall and when He was finished He pivoted around and walked out on them, and all of the artifacts that He passed as He walked out of the temple represented Him.
The table of showbread, the candlestick, the laver, the altar, all represented Jesus Christ. As He walked by all of these ritual artifacts they still represented Him but He had been rejected by those who possessed them because they missed the point of them so He was leaving.
Jesus Christ is the Bread of life, Jesus Christ is the Light of the world, The Brazen alter represented the cross where Jesus was going to die for every sin a day later.
Christ is the cleanser of the believer as represented by the brazen laver. The one who was depicted by all of these "sacred" articles was walking out on the religion that misused them and as a result refused to recognize Him as their Messiah.
This is a perfect example of the fact that there is no advantage derived from the advantages of having God's Word in a temple or a book unless you believe what is represented by the temple or written in the book.
Ritual without reality is actually worse than worthless because if it function from rote and unbelief they actually obscure truth rather than reveal truth as God intended. Mark 7:6-7;
I believe that a commentary entitled "The Christian Heart of American Exceptionalism written by William Gallston in the Dec 31,2014 issue of the Wall Street Journal demonstrates the ritual without reality that is occurring in the USA today.
He refers to a poll done by the Pew Research center that found that 73% of US adults believe that Jesus was born of a virgin, that 81% believe that Jesus was laid in a manger, that 75% believe that the wise men were guided by a star and brought gifts of gold and frankincense, that 74% believe that an angel announced that Jesus birth to the shepherds and that 65% believe all four of these things.
This is all fine but it is all RITUAL. The real question is how many US adults believe that Jesus is the Son of God? That is the ONLY question that matters. John 3:16; the other issues are simply details and believing them does not mean that you believe the REALITY that Jesus is the Son of God.
The Jews were tyrannically fastidious about their ritual but it didn't help them and it won't help us either. John 4:23-24;
Mark 13;1b; "and one of his disciples came to him and said "Teacher look at these wonderful stones and buildings of the temple" Net note 3
His disciple is trying to minimize Jesus' rejection in the temple, the disciples are embarrassed, so they decided to try to turn His attention on the great stones and buildings of the temple.
The disciples were impressed with the construction and the buildings and they try to use the magnificence of the temple to deflect the significance of the Jews' rejection of Jesus but we see from His response that He would have none of it.
Mark 13:2; "Jesus said to Him, Do you see these great buildings? Not one stone will be left on another that will not be torn down.
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