"Do not just hear the Word of God and think hearing is enough. DO what it says!" James 1:22

Wednesday, October 31, 2012

Mark Lesson 11

MARK 9:30-50

Object Lesson:  Use a Swiss Army Knife to explain the importance
of the church having many parts of one body.


It seems many times so far in our study of Mark, we find that people as well as the disciples just don't understand the fact that Jesus is truly God and truly Man.  Last week's lesson shared with us how Jesus was in tune with everyone's lack of understanding when He asked the disciples, "Who do people say I am?"  When Peter was asked Who he thought Jesus was, he answered, "You are the Christ."  Christ is translated as Messiah and Messiah means "the promised deliverer of the Jewish nation prophesied in the Hebrew Bible."  Peter basically said, "You're the One we've been waiting for.  You're the One God promised would come.  You're the One Who is going to save us and make things right."  THIS is IMPORTANT.

According to Peter's answer, perhaps the disciples finally understood Who Jesus really is.  Then we come to today's lesson and we find the answer to that to be... no, they still don't get it.  They still don't understand.  Mark 9:32 says, "They did not understand what Jesus was saying and they were afraid to ask Him to explain."  The disciples may have been everyday common men but they knew what Scripture said about the Messiah.  They knew in Jeremiah 23:5-6 it says, "Behold, the days are coming, declares the Lord, when I will raise up for David a righteous Branch, and he shall reign as King and deal wisely, and shall execute justice and righteousness in the land.  In His days, Judah will be saved and Israel will dwell securely.  And this is the Name by which He will be called: 'The LORD is our righteousness."

Our lesson moves on to the disciples arguing -actually fighting- about which one of them will be more important in the kingdom of heaven.  IT'S NICE TO BE IMPORTANT.  The disciples might have even thought that because they were the first ones to be called by Jesus, they were more important than anyone else called by Jesus.

(At this point in our Wrap Up, Mrs. Nelson and Mrs. Hamilton needed assistance that only the Swiss Army Knife could provide.  This is where Mrs. Gettelfinger explains the different features of the knife and how IMPORTANT it is to have each and every one of the tools be a part of the ONE tool.)

Right now, it's important for you to hear the Wrap Up for our lesson.  And since it is my turn to offer the Wrap Up, it's important that I be here.  Does this mean Mrs. Nelson and Mrs. Hamilton are NOT important?  Absolutely not!  What if Mrs. Neal came and said to each of them, "Well, your girls don't really have anything to do right now so feel free to go on home."  Then when the Wrap Up is over, who would be in your classrooms to shepherd you?  I may not need my Swiss Army Knife right this minute but Mrs. Nelson and Mrs. Hamilton needed it a few minutes ago.  It's the same when the Wrap Up is over.
God will have another IMPORTANT task for each of His CBS teachers.


Jesus tries to help the disciples AND us understand what it means to be important.  He uses a child to help explain.  Think about it... children must be cared for, right?  This is why we have parents, grandparents, aunts and uncles.  It is important to care for the children of our world.  This is why we have mission fields all over the world.  In Mark 9:37, Jesus said, "Whoever receives one such child in my Name receives Me..."  He said this so we would understand how IMPORTANT it is to care for others; adults as well as children.

At this point in our lesson, John actually shares with Jesus how someone who had not followed Jesus was actually caring for people and giving Jesus the credit for the actions.  That actually made John mad.  It was like the fork of my Swiss Army Knife complained to me that the spoon was trying to pick up a small piece of meat at dinner time.  That's just stupid!  Everyone knows a spoon is used for SOUP!  John thought that only he  and the other disciples were IMPORTANT enough to serve the Lord in such a special way.


To have my Swiss Army Knife without the bottle opener... I don't know what I would do.  I like drinking bottled Coke.  And these little scissors... I can't tell you how scratchy some of my shirt tags have been.  These little scissors have really come in handy!  This is how Jesus would feel about His church and the people who argue about what's IMPORTANT.  He looks at His church and says, "Wow, this church would do really well to have a (insert student's name) in it.  And a (another student's name)!  Now that would come in handy for this church.  And it sure would be nice if we just had a (another student's name.)!  Then what this church could accomplish... THAT'S IMPORTANT!"

Toward the end of our lesson, Jesus goes into a crazy explanation of sin to try and get John and the others as well as us to understand THIS...

It's nice to be important.

What does it matter if the scissors of my knife cut through a piece of rope for me?  Sure the pocket knife part of the tool will cut through rope quicker and easier than the scissors.  But the scissors work also.  What if none of the utensils on my knife opened at all because they all argued over who would be used for my next task?  The entire knife would be -USELESS.

God wants to work through each and every one of YOU, serving others.  THIS is IMPORTANT!
This week, will you choose to understand that BEING NICE is more important than being important?  Will you ask God how you can be useful to your family, your church, your community today?