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Welcome to the Westside church’s special Monday Morning Coffee podcast with Mark Roberts. Mark is a disciple, a husband, father and grand dad, as well as a certified coffee geek, fan of CS Lewis’ writings and he loves his big red Jeep. He’s also the preacher for Westside church.
Hello, and welcome to the Westside churches special Monday Morning Coffee podcast on this podcast, our preacher Mark Roberts will help you get your week started right. With look back at yesterday's sermon so that we can think through it further and better work the applications into our daily lives . Mark will then look forward into this week's Bible reading so that we can know what to expect and watch for. And, he may have some extra bonus thoughts from time to time. So grab a cup of coffee as we start the week together on Monday Morning Coffee with Mark.Speaker 2:
Good morning. Good morning. Welcome to the Monday Morning Coffee podcast for Monday, January the eighth. I'm Mark Roberts and I've got my Bible open. I've got my notes from yesterday's preaching in the 10 40 hour, and I have this eyewitnesses with Jesus, the Peter and John reading schedule. What a schedule. This is excited about it, and I know you are too. Let's get some coffee. Mm-Hmm, <affirmative> . Let's get our Bibles open. Let's get started. Yesterday I preach from Luke chapter five, which develops the story that we had been reading in March chapter one. And really liked just working through that and seeing what those fishermen saw so that they became followers of Jesus. And I close that sermon by talking a lot about the blessing of following Jesus. I think that's so important. There's so much emphasis sometimes on the difficulties of being a Christian and, and those are real. There's no question about that, particularly in our world today, which seems to be very much trying to go away from God and any kind of standards of holiness. But there are wonderful blessings for following Jesus the Christ. They come when we obey him. And I wanna build on that by just reminding that not only do those blessings come to us personally, but they come to the people who are around us when we are living right, when we are doing what is right, when we are operating with integrity, when we bring hope and joy everywhere we go. But I also want to add that sometimes blessings come much later when we obey God. And the example that I'm thinking of here is Moses building the tabernacle. Moses builds the tabernacle , uh, exactly according to the pattern. And Exodus emphasizes that about a bazillion times just over and over again, Moses did all things according to the pattern. You can read about that Exodus 39, Exodus 40 Moses is doing it letter perfect just as God told him to do. And it turns out that the tabernacle is in some ways a, a model, a diorama, a mini version of heaven itself. And we know that because the Hebrew writer in chapter nine develops that very idea. And Moses didn't know that. Moses didn't know that at all. But because he obeyed the Hebrew writer then can borrow from his obedience and use that and talk about Jesus carrying his blood into the most holy place and and, and use the tabernacle and all that goes with that to make the point that Jesus is our incredible high priest who not only made a sacrifice for sin, he is the one time consummate sacrifice for sin. And all of that comes hundreds of years later, after over a thousand years later after Moses had written about that in the book of Genesis. So just because when you obey God and you follow Jesus and you do what's right, something amazing does not happen in the next five minutes in your life or even in the lives of the people around you don't get discouraged. Obedience leads to blessing. Sometimes that means you get a boatload of fish, which actually that was not really the great blessing there was that they, they ended up leaving the fish. The fish don't matter. The blessing there was they got to spend the next several years with Jesus the Christ. Sometimes we get a an immediate personal blessing, but sometimes that blessing may not come for a long time, like until the day of judgment, when we hear Jesus say, well done , good and faithful servant, but blessings come when we obey God. And I think that's what those eyewitnesses saw and that's what we need to see as well. Let's talk more about eyewitnesses. Let's talk about our Bible reading in the eyewitnesses to Jesus, spending the year with Peter and John Plan . Let's get our Bibles open to Mark chapter two. It is Monday. We're starting the week getting everything underway and we are in Mark chapter two, beginning verse one. We're gonna read Mark two, one to 12. This begins a section here in the gospel of Mark, where there are five stories where Jesus gets involved in controversy between him and the religious authorities of the day. This is very important to mark. These stories may not be in chronological order, which is the kind of thing that drives us crazy when we try to put together a harmony of the gospels or a reading plan where we follow Jesus' life. But these stories probably are not in chronological order. They are in thematic order. They illustrate the hostility toward Jesus and that growing hostility as they refuse to accept Jesus. But it becomes more and more apparent who Jesus is. All of this is pointing towards chapter three and verse six, where there is the decision made that Jesus must be killed in today's reading. Then Mark chapter two, one to 12, we get this wonderful story of the man who is paralyzed and his friends let him down through the roof. You need to know a word or two here about roofs in Jesus' day. First of all, people lived in flat roofed houses. Those houses would have big timbers , uh, stretched across kinda raftery kind of things, two or three feet apart. And then you would crosswise smaller sticks and reeds to make a lattice work. And then there would be about a foot of earth which was packed down into that lattice work so that it would be waterproof. All told, you've got a roof here that's about two feet thick and these guys literally are digging through the roof. They are digging a hole in the roof. And you can imagine Jesus sitting there teaching and all of a sudden pieces of roof and dirt and sticks and twigs start falling down onto Jesus' head and everyone starts to look up and see what's going on. All of a sudden there's a ray of light and a shaft of light and then there's a big hole and they start dropping this guy in on Jesus. And the scribes of course are very unhappy when Jesus says in verse five, your sins are forgiven. Probably most people didn't blink a lot when Jesus said that because in Jesus' day there's such a strong connection. There's such a strong belief in the connection between sin and sickness. This guy's sick. He must be a terrible sinner. So of course Jesus would say something about that. But the scribes are concerned that Jesus is forgiving sin. Only God can forgive sin. And I love that Mark gives us their quotation so that we can make a decision. Here are , are they right about that? And of course they are right about that. And Jesus knows that they are right, that only God can forgive sins. So he does a miracle to prove that He is, he is God. That's what miracles do. They demonstrate the authority of Jesus. And Jesus does not duck it. He doesn't say, oh now , now fellas, I didn't mean I was forgiving his sin. I we should pray for his sin. No, no, no. Jesus owns it all the way, does a miracle and says, I can forgive sins and I can show you that I can forgive sins by doing this. And you can imagine, where does that put those scribes? They said, no one, but God can forgive sins. Jesus does a miracle showing at minimum God is with him. And so his claim then is being certified by God. He must be God. Where are you? Now that's a tough call, isn't it? That's a tough call unless you're willing to be honest and say Jesus, Jesus is the son of God. That's what the eyewitnesses saw. Tomorrow we continue in Mark chapter two. Welcome to Tuesday. And today we read Mark chapter two verses 13 to 22 . There's two pieces to this. The call of Matthew on a given here in Mark's gospel, his other name Levi. And then there's a question about fasting. Let's do this business with Levi in the feast because here there's a big supper. When Jesus calls Levi in verse 14, that's rather unexpected, who would call a tax collector? They are hated. They are cooperators with the Roman government and they cheated people and padded their commission. They abused their authority. Nobody likes these guys. Jesus says, I want one of these guys to be part of the original, the original 12 to be part of the apostles and the scribes and the Pharisees attack him for this. Verse 16. Remember the theme here is controversy with the Pharisees and the scribes. They attack him. Notice the importance of who you eat with. Jesus just uses that as an opportunity to explain his mission. I can't help self-righteous people. I can only help people who know they are sick. I can only help people who know they need God. And then we get into a question about fasting. John's disciples fast, everybody fast. Verse 18, there was a lot of fasting in Jesus' day. All Jews fasted on the day of Atonement. That's once a year. But the Pharisees fasted twice a week on Monday and on Thursday , um, Luke 1812 contains a reference about some of that they had added that that wasn't mandated in scripture. That was just their practice. Christ. Then Jesus uh , says some things here about inappropriate behavior. And it is very common to try to make this into something about the Old Testament and the New Testament. And you can't fit Jesus's teachings into the old mold. And usually what that does is fit the agenda of people who are trying to add things to the New Testament and say, we have to break the mold and get crazy with the Bible and so forth. And, and Jesus isn't saying that at all. Jesus never decries the Old Testament is somehow broken or defective. Jesus stands on the Old Testament and says that it points to him. So that's not where he's going. He's just talking about inappropriate behavior. And it's just not the time for fasting. Fasting was associated with mourning . There'll be a time to fast. That'll be a after the cross. But this is not the time for that. You know , you imagine you go to a wedding banquet and everybody's eating and having a great time and they come to serve you and you say, no thanks, I'm I'm , I'm fasting. I'm fasting here. And you put on a big show of mourning and say , oh , that's inappropriate. It's not the place to fast. If you're involved in that, then you're in the wrong spot. And I think that's all Jesus is trying to say here is that fasting was about mourning. And this isn't the time to mourn because Jesus is here right now and Mark will continue to build on some of these ideas with yet another controversy in our reading tomorrow we'll read Mark chapter two and we'll continue at Mark chapter two tomorrow starting in verse 23. See you on Wednesday. It is hump day, it's Wednesday. We're reading Mark chapter two verses 23 to 28, some of the most misunderstood passages in the gospel of Mark because this is continuing that theme of controversy. Jesus doing something that causes people to say, Hey you, what's this all about? And that is Jesus is allowing his disciples to pluck heads of grain. Verse 23 on the Sabbath day . And the Pharisees say that they are sinning and it's extremely important that we all understand that the Pharisees are wrong. Can any of us imagine that Jesus is walking along and there is his 12 apostles and they're just sending up a storm and Jesus doesn't say anything about it? That's outrageous and that's ridiculous. This is not a violation of the law of Moses. In fact, in Dero , in chapter 23, verse 25, you get explicit permission to do exactly what's being done here. Unfortunately, because people believe the Pharisees are right in verse 24, they then have Jesus somehow sanctioning sinful behavior. And that's kind of an awkward position to put Jesus into. So we end up with situation ethics. Oh, in this situation you can suspend the law of God. That opens a really big can of worms though. Who gets to decide the situations where you can suspend the law of God? And how does all of that work and which laws are never to be suspended? I, I can't even begin to go there. Of course, maybe the thing to note is this is not an emergency situation. Jesus' apostles are not starving to death. They're just snacking as they go along. So that whole, so that whole attempt to justify the situation and understand the situation in terms of the idea that the law of God holds at some level, but there's greater need that overrides that all of that is just badly misplaced. Jesus gives a three part answer. First he says, David violated the law of God. You never say anything about that. So J Jesus is just asking for some consistency here. And then verse 27, Jesus points out the true nature of the Sabbath, that the Sabbath was made for man and the Pharisees had made up all these rules as if we are to serve the Sabbath. No, God intended the Sabbath to be a help or a blessing to man. I think about that in terms of our Bible reading. Sometimes I never want Bible reading to become this task that people feel like it's tied around their neck and oh, I've gotta do this or everyone at West Side is gonna hate on me. Bible reading is designed to help us know and love God. And the Sabbath was designed to give people a break so that they could stop and spend time with God and worship and think about the Lord and spend time with their family and the Pharisees, he just made it into this terrible burden. Then Jesus says verse 28, he's the Lord of the Sabbath. And that's an explicit claim here that the Son of man, God in the flesh, the Messiah, he has authority over all that pertains to humanity. He did need some scribes to tell him what he needed to be doing on the Sabbath day. I wanna say more about this tonight in Bible talk. 'cause I think there's something to be said here about Jesus and his use of King David, but that'll hold us for the podcast. Pray about this. Don't use this as some excuse to violate God's law because you have a greater need. That's certainly not where Jesus is going, but think about how we can use the tools and the spiritual disciplines God has given us to be closer to the Lord, not dread or even resent serving God. We'll see more of that in our reading on Thursday when we go to the synagogue with Jesus. See you then. It is Thursday and today we're reading in Mark the third chapter, making Progress, aren't we? This is Mark chapter three, verses one to 12. Once again, we have two pieces in our reading. The first six verses deal with Jesus in the synagogue and on the Sabbath day there's a man there with a withered hand. There is an apocryphal gospel, an uninspired gospel contains kind of legendary sort of material that has this man telling this big story about how he was a stone mason and now he can't work. And it goes on and on and on. And the way the Bible reports the story without embellishment just shows the veracity of the Bible taxed. Now, the Pharisees, absolutely, he held that any kind of healing and medical work could only be done if the situation was life threatening. And this situation is clearly not life threatening. But notice Jesus intentionally violates manmade rules and manmade religion. He could have said, I'll see you tomorrow, buddy. We don't wanna make anybody upset. He could have said, I'll meet you out back later on. I'll take care of you, but I don't wanna do anything here. It'll cause a big fuss. Jesus cuts across manmade rules courageously and boldly. He says, that won't play, that won't work. And I'm not bound by that and I'm not gonna be bound by that. I really like that. Jesus. In verse four is content to let people decide about the Sabbath for themselves. That's an important principle. Sometimes we think we've gotta lock everything down and decide everything for everybody. And if somebody doesn't do it exactly the way I'm doing it, then we jump on 'em with both feet. And that is the way of the Pharisees. They were trying to lock down and figure out every category of work and everything that could be work or could be defined as work or could be tempted to cause you to work. So for example, a tailor was not to thread his needle on the Sabbath day. He might be tempted to do some tailoring. A woman was not to look at herself in the mirror on the Sabbath day. She might be tempted to pluck a gray hair. Plucking is work. That's the way of the Pharisees. We're just gonna get this down to the nth detail. Lots of human opinion in that of course. And then we're gonna bind that on everybody else. Jesus says, you can't do that to me. That's not how God works. That's not the purpose of God's law. That's not what you need to be doing with God's law. Don't do that. And so a great crowd follows Jesus, which of course we're not surprised at all. Mark really is emphasizing his fame. He's just a giant celebrity. Everybody's about Jesus. People are coming everywhere to hear about him. He ends up needing a boat 'cause people are just crushing him. There's healing going on and we've got unclean spirits and they're shouting out, you are the son of God. Like I said earlier, Jesus does not want a recommendation from a demon that is not the kind of person that you want to give you a character witness. But what we need to see here is that Jesus just calmly and bravely controls every situation. If you're an eyewitness, what are you seeing ? Jesus, he's in charge. We will see more of the authority of Jesus as we continue in Mark chapter three on Friday. Welcome to Friday, and we're reading Mark chapter three, verses 13 to 21. This contains a bold announcement of Jesus's program in the number 12. Think of what 12 means to people. And when Jesus calls 12 apostles, he appointed the 12 to be with him. Verse 14 talked about that last Sunday. That's the blessing that comes to these men when they obey and follow Jesus. But the 12 would represent the 12 tribes of Israel. It would be hard to miss that kind of connection that Jesus is starting a new Israel and it is an interesting ban . There's a lot going on here. You got a zealot, you got a tax collector. I'm sure that created some friction. There isn't anybody here with seminary training. There's nobody who's a big famous political leader. There's no celebrities here. You can say a lot about the apostles failures and misunderstandings and there will be plenty of that in Mark's gospel. But they do have the courage to come and follow Jesus. Jesus says, you guys, you come with me. And they do exactly that. We get a little bit then about Jesus's family and there's just not much to say about that. We just don't know much about Jesus's family. There's a lot of speculation about that. That doesn't help us any. We just have insatiable curiosity, of course, about the Lord and about his family. But Mark doesn't tell us more than what we have here. What I think we need to see is what the eyewitnesses saw, and that's Jesus's courage and his boldness. He will not be stopped, not by demons, not by religious authorities, not even by some family members who don't under who do not understand who he is or what his mission is all about. That's a hard place to stop reading. But that's our reading for the week, and that concludes the podcast for this week. Thank you for listening. I hope that you have given a rating or review to the Monday Morning Coffee podcast that helps more people to find that podcast. I hope you're sharing it with your friends. This is the time of year where people are trying to get started with Bible reading. People have made some resolutions and they're trying to do some daily Bible reading. Help someone do exactly that out of the gospels. Give them a Bible reading schedule, point them to the Bible reading schedule on our website. They can download firstname.lastname@example.org and share with them the pod podcast that will help people understand what they read. And when we understand what we're reading, we can make good application of what we're reading. I do appreciate very much you listening to the podcast and all the encouraging comments and emails that I receive about it. So until next week, may your coffee be delightful. I hope your Friday is wonderful and I hope the Lord is with you today all day. I'm Mark Roberts and I wanna go to heaven and I want you to come to I'll see you on Monday.Speaker 1:
Thanks for listening to the Westside church of Christ podcast. Monday morning coffee with mark . For more information about west side , you can connect with us through our website, just christians.com and our Facebook page. Our music is from upbeat.is that's upbeat with two P'S UPP , B E A T , where creators can get free music. Please share our podcast with others. And we look forward to seeing you again with a company coffee, of course, on next Monday.