Series: BIOS of a Savior
Bible Passage: Mark 14:1-11
Other Pertinent Scripture: Parallel passages: for Mark 14:1-11 see Matthew 26:1-16; for Mark 14:1-2, 10-11 see Luke 22:1-6; for Mark 14:3-9 see John 12:1-8
Matthew 6:21; Luke 16:13; Romans 1:25; 12:1; 1 Corinthians 10:31
The gospel of Mark is a documentary account of the life of Christ. Like other ancient biographies, which were called a BIOS or “life,” Mark’s account speaks to us about the actions and events of a man’s life. But this is no mere man Mark is presenting. This is the holy man who is wholly God, the one who has unique authority to call us to follow him.
As a church, everything about Stonehouse centers on this BIOS - his life, his teaching, his authority, his suffering and his victory.
a note on this week’s text:
As Jesus becomes the target of the Chief Priests in Jerusalem they find that they will need help arresting him due to his popularity. They find this help in Judas Iscariot, one of the twelve. Mark makes that connection in our passage (Mark 14:1-11) by showing us where it was that Judas determined to betray Jesus. It was at Bethany, in the house of a man called Simon the leper, during dinner with friends when Mary displayed her adoration for Jesus; in this moment, that which Judas loves most becomes apparent and the course is set as he seeks an opportunity to betray Jesus.
The motivation behind this betrayal is worship. Judas values money over Jesus, it has taken the seat of greatest affection in his heart and instead of worshiping Jesus like Mary does, Judas stands by with a scowl and worships money as he calls Mary’s actions wasteful. The gospel of John helps us see that Judas is angered by the whole thing “not because he cared about the poor, but because he was a thief, and having charge of the moneybag he used to help himself to what was put into it.” (John 12:6) What we worship will direct our lives, it was true of Mary so she gave a costly gift and it was true for Judas so he sold Jesus out for cash.
this article is helpful in defining what worship is, check it out or share it with a friend:
“What Is Worship?” by Matt Mason
Suggested discovery/discussion questions:
1. We took some time to look at some differences in the three gospel accounts of this story. At first glance, it may seem that Matthew, Mark, and John are inconsistent and even contradictory in recording what happened in Bethany at this dinner. But when we take the time to look closer the slight differences in the accounts actually help to clarify some things for us and together they tell a harmonious story of what happened. What do we do when we come to places in the Scriptures that seem to be inconsistent? Have you ever been confused or thrown off by how certain stories are told in the Bible / how certain truths are presented in Scripture? Have you ever been asked these kind of questions by a friend or family member? It takes courage but it’s important to press into these moments where we need help and clarity. Are there ways that you need to do this?
2. By looking at the other gospel accounts of this story we are aided in understanding as we come to see that the woman who is pouring out the ointment on Jesus is Mary, and the disciple most upset by this “waste” who voices his opposition is Judas. We know that Mary has been deeply impacted by the ministry of Jesus because he raised her brother Lazarus from the dead. We know Judas is one of the twelve and has been with Jesus now for some time as he has been ministering throughout Galilee. They are both in the company of Jesus but they have very different reactions to Jesus. Why is it that these two people close to Jesus have such different reactions to him? What is being revealed through their actions? Can you see how this can happen in our current day?
3. We may initially perceive here that Mary is worshiping and that Judas is not but he is in fact worshiping, it’s just that the object of his worship is different. This points us to the fact that everyone worships. We were created as human beings to look to something as ultimate and before sin entered the story God was ultimate to mankind. Romans 1:25 shows us, however, that we have exchanged the truth for a lie and begun to worship the things God made rather than the God who made all things. What are some of the things that we worship? Why do we worship these things instead of God? What is it about these things that makes them unable to take the place of God? What happens when we exchange the truth for a lie and worship everything but God? Can you see in your heart and life how you worship other things? What are you prone to worship besides God?
4. Judas worshiped money, he loved to hold the moneybag and dip his hand in on occasion (John 12:6). He was a thief, thinking that if he had enough or just a little more money he would be satisfied. He was greedy. He looked to money as ultimate and when it came down to the biggest decision of his life, he chose money over Jesus. What we worship will direct our lives! Can you see how the things we worship lead us to make certain decisions? Where do we see evidence of this? How about personally, can you look at bad decisions, sinful choices, foolish directions you have taken and see how those errors were the result of worshiping something other than God?
5. We were made to worship God; we choose instead to worship the things he has made. This is a heart problem, not just a behavior problem and we have to come to a point where we admit… we love other things more than we love God. So what do we do? Is this a dead end? No. Ultimately our hope is in the fact that God has promised to give us new hearts when we look on Jesus and put our faith in him. Our worship problem is a heart problem, a love problem… and the remedy is found in the gospel. When we see that we have failed to bow down and worship the God of heaven and earth the gospel tells us that the God of heaven and earth bowed himself down low and took on flesh and blood so that he might brings us forgiveness and redemption. Jesus did what all of us have failed to do: he worshiped God and God alone and at the cross he exchanged his perfect life of perfect worship for our sinful lives of misplaced worship. Our hearts are changed when we see this truth and believe that Jesus did this for us. It leads us to a deep love and gratitude to Jesus and from this deep well of love, abundant worship springs forth! Have you believed the gospel? How does continuing to behold and believe the gospel change your heart and lead to worship?
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