Making Use of What you Know

Last week in Jesus Class we were served yet another Mark Sandwich... Yum! (see the Jan 28th blog-post on Sandwiches) In chapter 6, Jesus is first rejected at Nazareth. He then sends out the 12 Disciples on a mission. Mark next inserts the flashback of John the Baptist being executed for confronting Herod's illicit marriage to his brother's wife. Finally, Mark records the return of the 12 after their mission. Message? The mission of the kingdom is costly - it might bring even painful rejection!

It's a riveting chapter, but how do you apply its message to your own life? What difference would it make to the church today if we lived in fearless abandon to the mission of Jesus? What do things like "Shake off the dust" mean in a world where we have a hard time just being heard in the first place?

Here's what the class came up with for personal application points. Actually this is only a fraction of what people submitted. Usually the class teacher is the one putting the bold personal application questions up on the board, but this week we flipped the script and had the students brainstorm.

Here are the best out of a list of over 40 reflection questions. I think they did pretty good!

#28) Who in my life do I need to hold accountable for their actions? Am I willing to take the risks that confronting them might involve? Why not?

#38) Jesus couldn't perform the miracles he really wanted to in Nazareth because people lacked faith. How is your level of faith affecting Jesus’ ability to work in your life?

#33) Has the fear of acceptance ever held you back? How do you overcome it?

#45) Jesus sent the disciples out in pairs. How can I bring others into my ministry so I'm not alone in my efforts? What are the advantages of always having someone else in partnership with me?

#14) What would you do if you had the power Herod did? a) Use it for selfish gain, caving-in to evil influences? b) Stand up for what is right even if you had to retract something you previously said? c) Avoid the situation and just let things play out? Why?

#12) Is there a Herodias in my life? How can I be prepared to stand up to someone of such power and negative influence?

#11) What would I do if Jesus asked me to go out in mission like the 12 - with little resources or specific directions? Would I obey? What would I stand to learn through such an experience?

#9) What capabilities of mine are actually hindered by lack of faith in those around me? How can I handle myself in a situation where the people surrounding me don't operate from a base of trust?

Sometime this week, grab your bible, give Mark 6 a look and let the Jesus Class point you toward some penetrating reflection questions as you study.

Way to go Jesus Class!