Summary: Mostly a verse by verse list of questions to encourage group discussion. Very little explanatory material.
Mark 1:1-8 Small Group Bible Study
Read verse 1.
What does the word “gospel” mean?
What kinds of bad messages are newsworthy?
What kinds of good messages are newsworthy?
What is the ‘good news’ about Jesus?
What does the name ‘Jesus’ mean?
Since the Old Testament name, ‘Joshua,’ is the same, how did God bring salvation through Joshua?
In our salvation, what are we delivered from? What are we delivered to?
What does the word, “Christ,” mean? What is the Old Testament word for “Christ? How was the word used in the Old Testament?
What difference does it make that Jesus is the “Son of God?”
Read verse 2.
Where does the word messenger come from?
What is the messenger supposed to do?
How do we help to prepare the way for people to come to know Christ, to grow in Christ and to become useful in Christ’s kingdom?
Read verse 3.
The word, ‘desert, desolate place, wilderness,’ is used to speak of where John preached and baptized, and where Jesus was tempted. What significance did the “wilderness” have to the Hebrew people? What did it represent?
The word, ‘voice,’ refers to the one speaking the message. In Joshua 1: 1-2, Joshua is told to get the people ready to cross the Jordan River to go into the promised land. What kind of message was this for them?
If the “desert, wilderness” for Israel represents a time of judgment because of sin, and they learn that God is sending a messenger to prepare the way for Himself to come…Is that good news or bad news? What should that say to us?
Read verse 4.
What do we mean by baptism in our church?
Did the Jews practice baptism or special washings? What kind?
What would John have meant by baptism of repentance?
Read verse 5 and Matthew 3: 2.
What do you think this phrase, “the kingdom of heaven,” (sometimes it’s “kingdom of God”) means?
Read verse 6.
What do John’s clothes say about him?
What Old Testament prophet spent some time in the wilderness?
Read verse 7-8.
What do the phrases ‘one more powerful than me’ and ‘whose sandals I am not worthy to untie’ say about John? (See: John 3:30.)
How do we sometimes NOT practice humility in regard to our relationship with Jesus?
The prophets had said that the Messiah would bring the Spirit of God, or “pour out the Spirit” on people. (See Isa 44:3; Ezek 36:26-27; Joel 2:28-29). So, this was actually a way that John was making the connection for the people that the promised Messiah was coming. How do we help to prepare people for the Truth that Jesus is the Messiah, the only one who can deliver us from our sins?
We know how the church goes about preaching this message, but how do individuals go about proclaiming this message about Jesus being the one who can take away our sins?