Mark 2

Specific Text - Mark 2:1-1

The Pharisees were right. We don't say that very often, but in Mark 2:6-7, they absolutely hit the nail on the head: nobody can forgive sins except for God Himself. They thought they had caught Jesus red handed here. Jesus is new on the scene, and as with so many fads the people were fascinated with Him, which took attention away from the Pharisees.

Plus, the Pharisees saw themselves as God's policemen. They patrolled Jewish society just looking for sinners that they could make a public example out of for violating God's law, and they had just caught Jesus supposedly committing one of the biggest sins possible: blasphemy.

The crowd hadn't picked up on this. They weren't all that concerned with the theological minutia that the Pharisees fretted about. The crowd just wanted their daily problems solved and their deadly diseases healed, and it seemed like that's exactly what Jesus came to do, so they packed in as tightly as they could to get in on the miracle fest.

Both groups - the Pharisees and the crowd - missed the big picture. The Pharisees of course didn't realize that Jesus was divine and that He did have the authority to forgive sins, and that He could do so on the basis of the sacrifice of Himself that He came to make. The crowd just wanted their immediate problems solved, and they didn't understand that although Jesus would solve problems for a few people over His three year ministry, His primary goal was to lead His people out of their slavery to sin and into the freedom of the Kingdom of God.

As you read Mark this month, pay attention to who Jesus is and what He has done for you.

Prayer for the Day: Dear Father in Heaven; help me to recognize Jesus for who He is. Help me to remember that He's your Son, the Son of God. Thank you for the forgiveness that comes in His divine name, and thank you for sending Him to make it possible for me to live in your Kingdom. In Jesus' name I pray, Amen.

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