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Walk with Jesus. Run in faith.

As I follow Jesus through the Gospels, it becomes clear that He came to earth to establish a new reality.

Everyone around Him was concerned about receiving. People always ask: Heal me. How do we get to heaven? Can you explain this? Shoo that evil away. Prove this.

Now, I don't think there is anything wrong with all these requests. Jesus was so gracious in answering all these. But Jesus placed a greater emphasis in showing everyone a better way of living than the He did on the one-off miracles.

He reminds the disciples that the way of this world is take, take, take; power, power, power. He goes on to say that those who follow Him will live by a different code.

Ready? Let's jump in.
Mark chapters 9, 10, and 11

Now think about this.

But among you it will be different. Whoever wants to be a leader among you must be your servant, and whoever wants to be first among you must be the slave of everyone else. For even the Son of Man came not to be served but to serve others and to give his life as a ransom for many. (Mark 10.43-45)

Question of the day:

Lord, who do you want me to serve today?

And throwing off his cloak, he sprang up and came to Jesus. (Mark 10.50)

What a response to a call, right? Leaving the security of his cloak. Throwing off the very thing that hid his shame. Immediately jumping up and going to Jesus. Bartimaeus knew how much better Jesus could make his life. In comparison to where he was, Jesus was everything.

If only we could see ourselves as clearly as the blind man could.

The fig tree, the temple, and a hangry Jesus. (Mark 11.12-25) Let’s go a bit deep (and a tad long).

You’ve probably read this passage before. Like me, you probably glossed over it. Or saw each one–the cursing of the fig tree, the clearing of the temple, and the return to the withered fig tree–as three separate vignettes.

Try to consider them as one whole account with Mark using the cursing of the tree as a starting marker and the return to the tree as the end of the lesson.

Set scene: Jesus was hungry. He could not find fruit on a fig tree. So he curses it (Mark 11.14). Try to see this as a prophetic marker (not separate from the next scene). Prophetic for what they were about to see.

Next scene: Jesus and his team were at the temple where they find similar emptiness. In the temple, just as in green the tree, there was hustle and bustle, but busyness does not necessarily equate to fruitfulness.

The return (the next day) to the now-withered fig tree serves to complete the picture. With the fig tree mirroring the dying religion in the temple.

What’s your temple like?