The Gospel of Mark #3 - Following Jesus
The Gospel of Mark #3:
Text: Mark 1:14-20
Thesis: To note that we’ve been called by Jesus and must leave every hindrance behind
and follow Him.
(1) Now, Jesus is ready to start His earthly ministry.
(a) He had recently been baptized and had overcome Satan’s intense temptations.
(b) Also, John the Baptist had just been imprisoned.
1) The word used here is also used of Jesus (cf. Mark 9:31; 10:33) and of all Christian believers (cf. Mark 13:9-12).
2) It “combines not only the adversities to which the faithful are subjected but also the superintending will of God that is operative through them” (Edwards 44).
(2) Let us note what is involved in following Jesus:
I. The Call
A. Jesus came on the scene proclaiming: “The time is fulfilled, and the kingdom of God is at hand; repent and believe in the gospel” (v. 15).
1. By “the time is fulfilled,” Jesus was saying that “the period of preparation, that of ancient Israel and John, was complete. The divinely appointed time had come. The prophecies were being fulfilled in [Him]” (Brooks 47).
2. “Kingdom of God” appears 14 times in Mark and may refer to either the church or heaven, depending upon the context.
B. Jesus called the 4 fishermen to follow Him.
1. Prophets called on people to follow God, but only Jesus called on people to follow Himself.
2. Although Jesus and the fishermen had met before (cf. John 1:35-42), “Mark wants to underscore the force of Jesus’ call” (Garland 78).
3. Jesus wants to make them “fishers of men,” which was “a common description of philosophers and other teachers who ‘captured men’s minds’ through teaching and persuasion” (Wiersbe 112).
C. We have been called today by the gospel (cf. 2 Thess. 2:13-14) to follow Jesus, who will make us “fishers of men.”
1. God will make us become the people whom He desires for us to be (cf. Heb. 13:20-21).
2. As we follow Him, He is at work within us (cf. Phil. 2:13).
II. The Cost
A. The 4 fishermen immediately left their nets behind to follow Jesus.
1. In Luke 5:11, they are said to be people who “forsook all and followed Him.”
2. They sacrificed the known for the unknown, the certainty for the uncertainty.
B. What must we give up?
1. We must lay aside every hindrance (cf. Heb. 12:1).
2. At times, we may have to lay aside:
a. Our family (cf. Matt. 10:37; Luke 9:59-62)
b. Our friends (cf. 1 Cor. 15:33)
c. Our job (cf. Matt. 6:33)
3. Basically, we must be willing to deny self and take up our cross daily to follow Jesus (cf. Luke 9:23).
a. The word “deny” comes from a Greek word that means “to forget one’s self, lose sight of one’s self and one’s own interest.” (Thayer’s 54).
b. We must be crucified with Christ (cf. Gal. 2:20).
(1) “Christ came with a radical message and then a radical call, and these four responded in radical obedience” (Hughes 1:36).
(2) Will you follow Jesus?