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The 60 @ The Village: Unveiling Unexpected - Mark 9:2-13

Unveiling Unexpected:  Mark 9:2-13

Debrief

Debrief offers an abridged outline of the Sunday sermon for individuals or Community Groups alike, to re-engage the content of the Sunday sermon.  This outline is far from complete, but serves to give a track or road map to walk through the content of Sunday in another context during the week

The Disciples have just heard something unexpected from Jesus – “If anyone would come after Me, let Him deny himself and take up his cross and follow Me” (8:34).  This was so unexpected it took them six days to comes to grips with it.

Now the Disciples are about to see something unexpected from Jesus – Jesus radiating the glory of God as the glory of God.

Because we have the Bible, that bears witness to Jesus, and that Jesus uses to show Himself to us, every time we open it, we have a MORE SURE revelation of Jesus than the disciples did on the Mount of Transfiguration. (2 Peter 1:16-21)

It doesn’t get any better than God’s people opening up God’s Word and trusting God’s Spirit to Unveil Jesus in it all.

Transfigure means “to change radically.”  Jesus wants to show Himself to you as Someone radically different than you think He is

No encounter with Jesus is supposed to be the normal stroll down the lane.  This morning is meant to be that moment when you stop and realize everything is different than you thought it was……better than you’ve seen it to be.

Jesus not only desires to show Himself to us in radically different ways as radically different than we think He is…….He also wants us to respond radically different than we usually do, or which is our natural tendency to.

When Jesus shows Himself to us, our tendency is to want to say something or do something, like Peter.  BUT what God really wants is for us to Look at Someone, Love Someone and Listen to Someone.  He wants us to Look at Jesus, Love Jesus, and Listen to Jesus. - “This is my beloved Son; listen to Him.” (v:7)

(1) Look On Him

Jesus wants us to Look AT Him, Look ON Him instead of Look PAST Him.

Much of the time when we think we’re looking AT Jesus, we’re really looking PAST Jesus, to what we think Jesus wants us to DO.  All the while, Jesus is more concerned that we look AT Him than PAST Him.

Peter’s first response was to DO something.  His first response should have been to Look at Someone.

The Disciples are going to struggle to Look to Jesus.  Peter is going to look to himself and his own means.  Peter is going to look to his pre-understanding of Scripture (Moses & Elijah).

Seeing Jesus clearly isn’t primarily about doing something, BUT gazing at Someone.

One thing have I asked of the LORD, that will I seek after: that I may dwell in the house of the LORD all the days of my life, to GAZE upon the beauty of the LORD and to inquire in his temple. – Psalm 27:4

(2) Love Him

Jesus wants us to LOVE Him instead of just loving the things that come from Him – in this case, His Power

This is what the Disciples are after.  This is what their view of Moses & Elijah are all about.  This is what their question on the way down the mountain about Elijah coming first is all about.  It’s a reference to Malachi 4:5-6:

Later, two of the disciples who were there, James and John, are going to say to Jesus, “Teacher, we want you to do for us whatever we ask of you” (10:35). 

How many of us are thinking the same?

Much of the time we’re looking to Jesus to see what He wants to give to usPower, rather than what we should give to HimLOVE.

The Disciples are going to struggle to love Jesus.  They are going to have a more Utilitarian mindset.  Peter is going to deny Jesus to protect himself.  The disciples are going to abandon Jesus to protect themselves…….to love themselves and their lives more than Jesus when Jesus doesn’t seem to have the power they anticipated.

A couple of chapters later Jesus is going to be asked what the most important thing in life is…….what the most important commandment of God is:

Jesus answered, "The most important is, 'Hear, O Israel: The Lord our God, the Lord is one.  And you shall love the Lord your God with all your heart and with all your soul and with all your mind and with all your strength.' – Mark 12:29-30

The more we gaze on Him, the more we love Him, the more we want to LISTEN to Him

(3) Listen to Him

There does come a time when we move from Looking on Jesus and Loving Jesus to Listening to Jesus, and actually DOING what He says.  But it happens in that order.  We can’t just stay on the mountain forever.  We can’t just try to stay in the moment and capture the moment like Peter tried to do.  The error of not listening to Jesus is just as bad as the error of not looking on Jesus or loving Jesus.  We don’t want to error either way.

BUT it’s only after you’ve Looked on Jesus and Loved Jesus that you will LISTEN to Jesus.  That’s why Jesus says, “IF you love Me, you will keep my commandments.” (Jn 14:15).

If you’re struggling to obey Jesus, to Listen to Jesus, it’s probably because you’re struggling to Look at Jesus……. And if you’re struggling to Look at Jesus you’ll also be struggling to Love Jesus.  And if you’re struggling to love Jesus, you’ll struggle to listen to Jesus…….to obey Jesus

If you’re struggling to obey Jesus even in the more Pleasurable things, you’ll certainly struggle to obey Jesus in the Painful things.  It’s only after you’ve looked on Him long enough, you would love Him for seeing that He Himself has gone before you in anything He’s put before you.  He’s not asking you to do anything He’s unable or unwilling to do Himslef…….”If anyone would come after Me, let him deny Himself and take up his cross and FOLLOW Me” (8:34).

Jesus wants the Disciples to Listen to Him because He’s leaving Galilee to go to Jerusalem.  Jesus wants us to LISTEN to Him because life with Jesus is not just about life in Galilee…….it’s also about life in Jerusalem.

Throughout the first half of the book of Mark, Jesus is Pleading with the Masses to listen to Him.  Now He is Pleading with the Disciples to Listen to Him.

The Disciples are going to struggle to Listen to JesusPeter is going to struggle to listen to Jesus.  Peter is going to misunderstand what Jesus says about dying and raising.  The disciples are going to struggle to listen to Him, missing much of what he says about his ultimate purpose.

Much of the time the agenda God has is radically different than the agenda we have…….that’s why we need to LISTEN to Jesus.

Diving In

Diving In offers a few questions to help you re-engage the concepts from Sunday. Feel the freedom to use all of the questions, or to simply camp out on just one. These questions aren't intended to answer all the issues that surface through the thrust of this weeks' message, but to simply raise them and allow you time and space to process them, ideally in the context of your Community Group.

  • Have you ever considered 2 Peter 1:16-21 in light of Mark 9:2-13?  What kind of confidence to Peter’s words give you as you open up your Bible?
  • Are you Looking on Jesus?  Is there something you’re looking PAST Jesus for today?  Are you missing the opportunity to look AT Him……..to look ON Him? 
  • Are you Loving Jesus?  Is there something you want from Jesus that you’re loving more than Jesus today?  Are you missing the opportunity to Love His face, not just His hands?
  • Are you Listening to Jesus today?  Why do you sense you may not be listening to Jesus the way you desire?  Do you see a connection between the way you look on Jesus and love Jesus and the way you listen to Jesus?

Deep End

The Deep End is a short and simple formation exercise you can use to dive deep into your heart before God. Feel the freedom to divert from the directions if that makes it easier for you to connect with Jesus in this exercise.

  • First, quiet your heart before the Lord. If you find yourself distracted by various thoughts (things on your “To Do” list, etc.), don’t “fight” the distractions, but rather spend some time praying over those things. Hopefully soon your heart will quieted down and you will be able to hear the Lord speaking to you.
  • After this, take 5-10 minutes to read and meditate on Mark 9:7.
  • Next, ask the Holy Spirit to reveal to you your normal MO in your time with Jesus.  Is it Listen, Love, Look, OR Look, Love, Listen.  Be open to receive what the Spirit is speaking to you about.  Don’t be discouraged, but encouraged to see things from His perspective, and that He desires you and your time with Him in deep ways.
  • After that, ask the Holy Spirit to reveal to you one practical way you can practice Looking at Jesus as priority number one.
  • Last, make a commitment to talk with someone about the things you sense the Spirit revealing to you.
  • End your time with prayer, confessing to Jesus your desire to Look on Him, and asking Him for help, but His Spirit, to do more of that.

Digest

Our digest section is all about helping you to memorize and meditate on God's Word so you'll be able to better digest it.  Take some time to commit these short verses to memory this week:

And a cloud overshadowed them, and a voice came out of the cloud, "This is my beloved Son; listen to him." – Mark 9:7

My hope is that these simple exercises in The 60 will help what we discovered during this week be distilled, and deepened in your heart and life with Jesus.

Matt

For The Elders