Today’s Reading: 1 Kings 1:1–53, Mark 1:1–34, Prov 1:1–7
Today’s Theme: Jesus the Teacher
Today’s theme is true wisdom exemplified best through Jesus as the greatest teacher the world has ever seen. We see the wisdom that David has through his experience with the Lord, the seeds of Solomon’s wisdom, and the fruits of wisdom and studying in Proverbs.
1 Kings 1:1–53
Service, humility and hard work
The young woman was very beautiful, and she was of service to the king and attended to him, but the king knew her not.(1 Kings 1:4, ESV)
It seems that David’s character had grown in his old age, after all he had been through. The younger David would probably have slept with her.
This woman shows great character too. She was of service to David which shows a commitment to hard work and humility.
The folly of self exaltation
Now Adonijah the son of Haggith exalted himself, saying, “I will be king.” And he prepared for himself chariots and horsemen, and fifty men to run before him.(1 Kings 1:5, ESV)
Reading this, it sounds like such folly but how easily we can fall into this trap. Lord, keep us from self exaltation and taking what is not ours or what we are not ready for.
Speak to your children
His father had never at any time displeased him by asking, “Why have you done thus and so?” He was also a very handsome man, and he was born next after Absalom.(1 Kings 1:6, ESV)
David still had a problem with disciplining his children, was this because he was the youngest and picked on at home, or was it through guilt of past sin?
Benaiah the faithful
But Zadok the priest and Benaiah the son of Jehoiada and Nathan the prophet and Shimei and Rei and David’s mighty men were not with Adonijah.(1 Kings 1:8, ESV)
Pastor once preached on the great significance of this faithful servant, we should seek to be like him in service, honour and loyalty.
Don’t have a deceptive heart
but he did not invite Nathan the prophet or Benaiah or the mighty men or Solomon his brother.(1 Kings 1:10, ESV)
This man’s deceptive heart is here revealed, notice he is at the serpents stone which is no small coincidence. A deceptive heart will always keep you hiding from those who will correct, rebuke or challenge you.
Grow in experience with the Lord
And the king swore, saying, “As the Lord lives, who has redeemed my soul out of every adversity,(1 Kings 1:29, ESV)
David knew the Lord more deeply now, through the experiences of his life.
Can the king rely on you?
King David said, “Call to me Zadok the priest, Nathan the prophet, and Benaiah the son of Jehoiada.” So they came before the king.(1 Kings 1:32, ESV)
Zadok, Nathan and Beniah are faithful servants the king can rely on.
Beniah the faithful worshiper
And Benaiah the son of Jehoiada answered the king, “Amen! May the Lord, the God of my lord the king, say so. As the Lord has been with my lord the king, even so may he be with Solomon, and make his throne greater than the throne of my lord King David.”(1 Kings 1:36–37, ESV)
This is one of the first times we have heard words from Beniah and he is clearly a worshiper and faithful, loyal servant, who is also full of faith. We must emulate him as men.
Praise to breakthrough
And all the people went up after him, playing on pipes, and rejoicing with great joy, so that the earth was split by their noise.(1 Kings 1:40, ESV)
Praise and worship at God, accomplishing His purposes, will break up the flesh (split the earth).
And Solomon said, “If he will show himself a worthy man, not one of his hairs shall fall to the earth, but if wickedness is found in him, he shall die.”(1 Kings 1:52, ESV)
It seems that even before he asked for It, God gave Solomon great wisdom. If someone is walking in righteousness, they would not fear for their life in this way. Sin brings fear and fear brings torment.
Jesus, The Son of God
The beginning of the gospel of Jesus Christ, the Son of God.(Mark 1:1, ESV)
Mark opens his account of the life of Jesus Christ with the bold affirmation that Jesus is the Son of God.
The ministry of John
John appeared, baptizing in the wilderness and proclaiming a baptism of repentance for the forgiveness of sins.(Mark 1:4, ESV)
This had two elements; it was a baptism not just as a rite but an active expression of repentance, and that repentance was for the forgiveness of sin. This is radical because if a man repents of his sin, he is no better off without the grace and mercy of God. We know that the ministry of John was empowered by the Holy Spirit and blessed by the Father, making it effectual for the forgiveness of sin, in anticipation of Jesus’ final work on the cross.
And all the country of Judea and all Jerusalem were going out to him and were being baptized by him in the river Jordan, confessing their sins.(Mark 1:5, ESV)
When we truly repent we confess our sin to God and even to men, as the Lord leads.
Immersed in God
I have baptized you with water, but he will baptize you with the Holy Spirit.”(Mark 1:8, ESV)
Jesus immerses us in the Holy Spirit. Think about that for a second, to be immersed in God.
Like a dove
And when he came up out of the water, immediately he saw the heavens being torn open and the Spirit descending on him like a dove.(Mark 1:10, ESV)
This was no gentle scene, the heavens were torn open, violently, and the mighty Spirit of God came upon Him, but in His might the Spirit came like a dove – this is so profound.
We need the mighty Spirit to come like this to us, if He tore through the heavens and hit us with that same ferocity, we would not survive the impact. No, the Spirit comes gently and gradually like a dove, restraining the full extent of His awesome power as God, to us as mere men.
So, yes Lord, rend the heavens and come down but when you do, come like a dove.
The Trinity at the baptism of Messiah
And a voice came from heaven, “You are my beloved Son; with you I am well pleased.”(Mark 1:11, ESV)
The whole trinity is present here, God is not tricking us as the modalist say, no, the Son was being baptised, the Spirit was descending and the Father was speaking.
This is key; the Son pleases the Father, we should seek to do the same.
The temptation of Jesus
And he was in the wilderness forty days, being tempted by Satan. And he was with the wild animals, and the angels were ministering to him.(Mark 1:13, ESV)
This seems to suggest that Jesus was tempted by Satan for the entirety of the 40 days.
God is the gospel
Now after John was arrested, Jesus came into Galilee, proclaiming the gospel of God,(Mark 1:14, ESV)
The good news of God is that God has come, God is the gospel.
Jesus, The fulfiller
and saying, “The time is fulfilled, and the kingdom of God is at hand; repent and believe in the gospel.”(Mark 1:15, ESV)
Jesus was the fulfilment of OT.
The first imperative of the ministry of Jesus is to Repent and Believe, not just believe. We must repent.
God’s effectual call
And immediately they left their nets and followed him.(Mark 1:18, ESV)
Jesus’ call on the lives of these fishermen was effectual, they came straight away, we must not delay in following and responding to the Lord.
Jesus, the teacher
And they went into Capernaum, and immediately on the Sabbath he entered the synagogue and was teaching.(Mark 1:21, ESV)
Jesus’ default activity was as a teacher.
A different teacher
And they were astonished at his teaching, for he taught them as one who had authority, and not as the scribes.(Mark 1:22, ESV)
Jesus taught with passion, truth, integrity and great authority because of the genuineness of His knowledge and heart. This was not just stuff from His head, He taught with heart and soul. Lord, help us to teach like You.
Jesus’ authority over demons
But Jesus rebuked him, saying, “Be silent, and come out of him!”(Mark 1:25, ESV)
Jesus had both power and authority over demons.
Spread God’s fame
And at once his fame spread everywhere throughout all the surrounding region of Galilee.(Mark 1:28, ESV)
We live to spread His fame.
The character of Jesus
And he healed many who were sick with various diseases, and cast out many demons. And he would not permit the demons to speak, because they knew him.(Mark 1:34, ESV)
Jesus had total authority over the demons, and we also read about Him doing amazing healing. We should not take it for granted, the healing and casting out, along with silencing of the demons, tells us a lot about the character of Jesus.
Increase in learning
Let the wise hear and increase in learning, and the one who understands obtain guidance,(Proverbs 1:5, ESV)
The NT picks this up and tells us to study to show ourselves approved, we must avoid anti intellectualism. After all, God gave us our minds and the ability to think and learn, so that we might know Him more and have the best possible quality of relationship to and with Him and one another.
Embrace wisdom and instruction
The fear of the Lord is the beginning of knowledge; fools despise wisdom and instruction.(Proverbs 1:7, ESV)
If we fear God then we will love instruction and wisdom and all that entails, including investment of time, money, energy and life, in study and meditating upon the truth of God, revealed in His word.
If we revere the Lord, we will love His word.
Most of the above post is a copy of the original notes from the same date in 2014.
The Gospel Coalition on Mark 1