Second book! Mark it!
Though second in the arrangement of the Gospels, many believe that the book of Mark was written first. While there may be similarities, notice that Matthew spoke primarily to a Jewish audience and aimed to establish that Jesus is the Messiah. A close read of the book of Mark shows that it is written to a non-Jewish audience and shows Jesus as a servant of all people.
This is Mark's version of Jesus' ministry. It’s action right away. He kinda cuts to the chase in the early chapters. Even the descriptions of Jesus' dialogues are shorter and sharper.
The message remains resoundingly clear: Jesus came to be with, to sit with, to heal, to deliver, and to elevate the lives of sinners.
The Spirit then compelled Jesus to go into the wilderness. (Mark 1.12)
We never really think of the Holy Spirit needing to work to move Jesus, even to the point of compulsion. But there it is. Also, we don't think of Jesus as not on the go. But here we see that he was compelled to go... into the wilderness. Well, I suppose I see the hesitation. Who would want to go be lost in a dangerous place?
We find, of course, there is nothing amiss with the Holy Spirit's leading. Even if it feels like you're lost.
Did you think that following God would actually be a walk on the wild side? We have this picture of tame and safe Christianity. But there is nothing tame about our all-powerful God.
A walk with Jesus is the adventure of a lifetime.
We’ve never seen anything like this before! (Mark 2.12)
Friend, when you let Jesus into your life. When you let Him speak to the lepers in your head (ooh, what song?); let Him raise your dead dreams; when He gives you the ability to take your mat; to get up from the dirt; and when you walk with Him to forgiveness...
Friend, even after all that, you ain't seen nothing yet.
Afterward Jesus went up on a mountain and called out the ones he wanted to go with him. (Mark 3.13) Aren't we so privileged? As Jesus has completed His work on earth, we’ve all been invited to be with Him forever.
Your mother and your brothers are outside asking for you. (Mark 3.32) Have you allowed your imagination to go free to picture what interaction was like in the Jesus-household? Take five minutes and imagine the dialogue, the kitchen scenes, the sibling rivalry, the chores...