POLICE OFFICER, TEACHER, JUDGE, principal, mom, dad, pastor, counselor. What do all these have in common? If there are some not-so-nice words that pop in your head at the thought of these people, then you should stop what you’re doing and pray about that right now. These individuals are in roles of authority. They have been granted authority over you by the state or by God.
Now think about this: when was the last time you really thought about Jesus having ultimate authority over your life?
Read over Mark 1:21-28. Pay attention to verses 25 and 26.
What are some things that jump out at you? (Feel free to take some notes in your Bible.)
What does verse 24 reveal about Jesus?
Read through verses 25 and 26 again. Jesus’ authority was over both the physical and the spiritual. How does this encourage you?
Why is it important that Jesus taught “as one having authority” and had the power to perform miracles?
There is an Ultimate Authority to which we all are accountable. It would be easier if we recognize that sooner rather than later. The demons in this passage knew who Jesus was. His words sent them into convulsions. The point? There is power in the words of Christ and authority in His very presence. That same authority isn’t lacking from your life. The power of Christ that is over heaven and earth is the same power in you. So why do we have a problem surrendering to Him? What do you need to surrender completely to Christ today?
HAVE YOU EVER written or received a note that reads: I like you. Will you go out with me? Check yes, no, or maybe.
If you have, then you’re not alone. It seems like at some point in everyone’s life, they come across one of these notes. Some of us spend more time writing them than receiving them. If the person you send it to checks “no,” then you write one to someone else. If he or she checks “maybe,” then you at least have a chance. If he or she says “yes,” then you finally have a significant other because that person has acknowledged that they at least like you too. Don’t you think it’s good when you finally know how someone feels about you?
Read Mark 1:9-13 and reread verses 10 and 11.
How is the Trinity (Father, Son, and Holy Spirit) represented in this passage?
Who came down to Jesus? Who spoke to Jesus?
What did God say to Jesus? Why is this event in Jesus’ life important?
How did this experience in the life and ministry of Christ help Him in verses 12-13?
Jesus was recognized as the Son of God by God Himself. God acknowledged to everyone that He has a father-son relationship with Jesus Christ. And with that relationship comes all authority. They may not have realized who He was beforehand, but no one left that river without knowing who Jesus really was.
Have you recognized Christ as the Son of God? Without that understanding, Jesus is just another guy who dipped in the Jordan River.
WHO’S YOUR FAVORITE SUPERHERO: Batman, Aquaman, Superman, Spiderman, Wonder Woman, or Ron Springs? Sometimes, we think it would be nice to have superpowers. There may have even come a point in your life when you thought you actually had superpowers, but then you realized that you didn’t have any power at all. You’re not alone in that: John the Baptist realized something similar during his ministry preparing the way for Christ.
Read Mark 1:4-8 and really focus on verse 7.
What do you think John meant when he said that he was unworthy to untie Jesus’ sandals?
What made him come to that realization?
Do you think it may have been a humbling experience for John to realize that Someone was coming who was greater than he? Explain.
How would you respond if you knew someone was coming after you who had greater power than you did?
The most beautiful phrase in this passage of Scripture are the words, “I am not worthy.” John had come to a point of understanding and acknowledgement that he was no longer going to be “the man.” John knew that when Jesus came, he would move aside and let the One with the real power take over.
Do we have the same understanding of Jesus that John had? Do you know this Jesus who is the Son of God and who has all the authority of heaven? It’s easy to discount Jesus as just prophet, a good man, or a teacher with devoted followers. Many religions do. But Jesus declared Himself to be nothing less than God. John recognized early on that Jesus was no ordinary man. He is the one and only Son of God, powerful beyond measure, and able to handle whatever you throw at Him. Let Him display His power in your life.