Summary: the faith of the first 12 disciples was weak; how about ours today when Jesus is mocked in our midst?
We remember of course today Jesus Christ, God who became human to pay for the penalty of our sins by taking them to death on a cross. Before reading the story in Mark 15, let us highlight God’s prophecies about the suffering Messiah.
Since the Messiah had to suffer and die for man’s sins, we should not be surprised that God promised this Messiah immediately after the sin of the first man and woman. We read God speaking to the devil in…
Genesis 3:15 - “And I will put enmity between you and the woman, and between your offspring and hers; he will crush your head, and you will strike his heel.”
The devil will eventually be crushed by Messiah Jesus Christ, but Jesus would suffer first.
Isaiah 50:6 - I offered my back to those who beat me, my cheeks to those who pulled out my beard; I did not hide my face from mocking and spitting.
Isaiah 53:4-7 - Surely he took up our infirmities and carried our sorrows, yet we considered him stricken by God, smitten by him, and afflicted. But he was pierced for our transgressions, he was crushed for our iniquities; the punishment that brought us peace was upon him, and by his wounds we are healed. We all, like sheep, have gone astray, each of us has turned to his own way; and the LORD has laid on him the iniquity of us all. He was oppressed and afflicted, yet he did not open his mouth; he was led like a lamb to the slaughter, and as a sheep before her shearers is silent, so he did not open his mouth.
And of course, there are so many other prophecies about the Messiah Savior suffering.
Please no open your bibles now to Mark 15…. As we read v21-41, picture yourself there as a Disciple of Jesus Christ.
Look again at v29… I wonder if any of those people welcomed Jesus a week earlier and treated Christ like a Superstar? I’m guessing some of them were there Palm Sunday. We don’t read a mention of any of the 12 disciples who praised Jesus the week before! We can read in other Gospels that the first 12 disciples actually went in hiding when Jesus was taken captive. We know that Peter, the lead Apostle, actually denied Jesus 3 times! Of course, the first 12 Disciples and many of the people should have known what was going to happen to Jesus because the Word of God spoke of it and Jesus Himself spoke of it! The people and the first 12 disciples during the crucifixion of Christ still had weak faith on God’s Word and in Jesus!
We do read at least 2 people that points to a faith in Christ in this passage in Mark 15:21-41. Who were they??
v36: Someone cared for Jesus! This person empathized with the suffering Messiah
v39: the Roman Centurion believed Jesus Christ as the Son of God!
Because of what he witnessed, the pagan Roman Centurion believed in Jesus Christ!
These 2 people are to be commended and we should follow their example. But…
How would we have responded if we were there when Jesus was being crucified?
Likely, we also would have hidden like the first 12 disciples; the first 12 disciples had weak faith during the crucifixion of Jesus. How strong is our faith?