URC Daily Devotion 28 February 2024

St Mark 10: 32 – 34

They were on the road, going up to Jerusalem, and Jesus was walking ahead of them; they were amazed, and those who followed were afraid. He took the twelve aside again and began to tell them what was to happen to him, saying, ‘See, we are going up to Jerusalem, and the Son of Man will be handed over to the chief priests and the scribes, and they will condemn him to death; then they will hand him over to the Gentiles; they will mock him, and spit upon him, and flog him, and kill him; and after three days he will rise again.’

Reflection

Taken alone, this short passage is quite shocking.  We see/hear Jesus’ prediction of His own suffering, death, and resurrection.  He states what will happen in such a way that there can be no doubt that He fully knows and believes what will come to pass.  Nothing about His crucifixion and death surprised Jesus. It was premeditated, pre-planned, and prearranged.  Jesus knew from the beginning what would happen to Him and why it would happen to Him. He knew the Old Testament perfectly and, of course, He possessed perfect divine knowledge as God in the flesh.  

Jesus’ death was foretold seven centuries before His birth by the prophet Isaiah; angels declared this to Joseph (Matt. 1:21) and even Jesus spoke about His own death in detail several times in the gospels of Mark, Luke and John.

In the text, Mark goes on to add, ‘those who followed were afraid’. They were confused as to why the one they fervently hoped was the Messiah, was walking into deadly danger in Jerusalem. They didn’t know exactly what was going to happen, but they knew it was going to be bad.

It strongly demonstrates that Jesus was committed and willing to go to His death. He knew what was going to happen when He arrived in Jerusalem and yet he led the crowd and the Twelve ‘from the front’, fully ready to give up His life and embracing the suffering that people like you and I should have endured. Instead, He would be crucified for our sins so that we could be forgiven.
 
Prayer

Father, we ask that you will give us the will to demonstrate total commitment to the path that you want us to follow.  Help us to lead others as you, in the person of Jesus, led the disciples and the crowds that followed Him on the road.  We ask this in Jesus’ name,
Amen.

 

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