Summary: complete salvation with God is a process; justification, sanctification, and glorification!
Many Christian churches preach salvation (the way to heaven) and glorification (the final realization of heaven); both are important truths but we seem to be short on talking about sanctification (the process of changing to align oneself with heaven). I believe we can note a glimpse of this process when Jesus taught His disciples even prior to His death and resurrection.
Please open your Bibles to Mark chapter 10…..
Read along with me Mark 10:1-12….
What stands out in v1? - as was His custom, Jesus taught the people; Jesus was always teaching!
And what is not surprising in v2? – there was opposition who questioned Jesus!
And the question was about divorce! In general, how did Jesus answer the question??
Jesus told them that they already have the answer; God already spoke about it to them!
v3: got questions? – check the Bible which you already have!
So, we read the Pharisees testing Jesus with a question; what can we say about their response in v4??
The Pharisees may not have said anything out loud, but they were likely thinking “we already know the answer but let see if we can trip up Jesus with a divorce question!”
v4: Pharisees already knew the answer, so the intent was to trap Jesus.
Jesus’ response in v5 is beautiful, isn’t it? Jesus went directly to the heart of the matter; yes, pun intended because…
v5: the problem was their hard hearts not their intellect. The Pharisees were smart people with wrong hearts.
What does it mean to have a hard heart?? – closed heart for God!
People have God’s Word to know how to live; the problem are closed hearts (not listening to God)! There will always be smart people who think they know how to live but the problem with people is not their intellect but their hard hearts to God!
In v6-9: Jesus gives the reason for the problem. From the beginning, God gave perfect instructions for living!
And where did Jesus get that perfect instruction to share with the Pharisees and disciples??
Jesus again cited the Word of God for teaching and rebuking!
I started the message with a note about sanctification; why? In this passage, Jesus gives us the main ingredients for sanctification: God’s teachings and an open heart to God.
What made me actually think of sanctification is v10…….
What’s significant in this verse??
We have been noting over and over again even as recent as the last chapter, the disciples ignored the situation when they could not understand Jesus. Finally, in a personal private setting, the disciples asked Jesus for an explanation!! I wonder how Jesus felt here? How do we feel when someone really interested asks us to explain something? I’m guessing Jesus was thrilled to hear the disciples ask.
v11-12: Jesus gives further details to the disciples. Jesus actually has a lot to say about divorce but in this verse Jesus simply states: Divorce will happen but God still hates it.
Now, in this passage, the questioning may be about divorce but the lesson is really about spiritual growth. The disciples gave an indication of spiritual growth by trying to understand what Jesus was saying and Jesus encouraged them.