The Need for Reminders (Mark 8:1-21)

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The Need for Reminders

Work at reminding yourself of Christ and

His sacrifice for you–Mark 8:1-21


It is funny how key reminders can lose their purpose. Christmas has turned into buying, giving and getting presents instead of a reminder of the greatest gift mankind has ever received. Easter has turned into eggs, dresses and candy instead of the greatest moment of history. Birthdays often degenerate into cake and ice cream, and not a time of thankfulness for a year of life with a precious soul. Anniversaries can degenerate into a dinner out, instead of a time of thankfulness for your second greatest gift. Your wedding ring can become an item not to be lost, instead of a reminder of the vow you made to God. Even communion can quickly slip into a religious routine, instead of a deep reminder of the price Jesus paid for your salvation.

But in spite of the way they can drift off center, and in spite of the ease in which they can become mere externals, we still need reminders. We need to be reminded of the precious lives God has given us in our children, so birthdays are a good idea. We need to be reminded of the gift of our spouse, so anniversaries and rings are beneficial. We are dull enough to forget what Christ has done for us, so communion is commanded in Scripture. Reminders are good, and they are necessary, sometimes to drive home a point.

Part of the reason God commands Christians to gather for worship, instruction, fellowship, communion every Sunday is that He knows how weak we are, and how prone we are to forget. He knows how desperately we need to gather. Those who are cavalier about faithful church attendance think they are stronger than they really are. They think they’re better than they really are. They think they can keep their heart fresh, hot and tender for Christ. They think they can be disobedient and not suffer consequence.

But God says we desperately need reminders. So He commands us to attend church every single week. Hebrews 10:24 and 25, “And let us consider how to stimulate one another to love and good deeds, 25 not forsaking our own assembling together, as is the habit of some, but encouraging one another; and all the more as you see the day drawing near.”

The Lord knows we desperately need to worship Him weekly. We desperately need to press one another to love and to serve, and we desperately need to encourage one another. The New Testament affirms we even need reminders of basic truth and doctrine if we’re going to live for Christ in this world.

After discussing the qualities that are present in the new heart of the genuine Christian, Peter says it this way in 2 Peter 1:12 and 13, “Therefore, I will always be ready to remind you of these things, even though you already know them, and have been established in the truth which is present with you. 13 I consider it right, as long as I am in this earthly dwelling, to stir you up by way of reminder.”

Peter says we need to hear the same truths over and over again. It is because we are dull. Though we have been redeemed and indwelt with the Spirit of God, we are still in these fallen bodies, with sinful bents, and the memory of sin, which wreaks havoc on us. We battle with selfish motives, anger, lust, pride and self-sufficiency, which results in a weak memory for the things which really matter.

Instead of being hot for Christ, we cool. Instead of the Lord being our first love, we start loving things. Instead of surrendering our life to Him, we become our own Lord. So we need reminders to stir us back to where we need to be. The Lord Jesus knew this, so as we open the gospel of Mark to chapter 8, He reminds his men and us of some crucial truths.

We’re covering a large section today, because all the verses are linked to one another in a very strong manner, and should be seen as connected. In this passage, the Lord is reminding His men of truths they already know, but Jesus is driving home some crucial points. He repeats the feeding of thousands to remind them of who He really is. He refuses to honor the petty requests of the Pharisees, reminding us of the danger of externalism and false religion. And then He warns His own men, reminding them of the danger of externalism, and exposing the dullness of their faith.

Do you take the time to truly be reminded of who your God is, and what Christ has done for you on the cross? Do you make any effort on Sunday and every day of the week to be reminded of what you believe? Do you seek to stay fresh in your walk with God by the use of the reminder of His Word, the intimacy of prayer, the joys of fellowship, and the gathering of God’s people for worship?

Jesus will now tell us how desperately we need reminders. The Lord repeats the feeding of thousands to remove all doubt of His abilities as God, and to reinforce His great compassion for people, even the Gentile people of Decapolis–look at . . .

#1  A Reminder of DIVINE Compassion and Provision,  Verses 1 to 9

demonstrated by the INCREDIBLE power of God the Son

Read Mark 8:1, “In those days, when there was again a large crowd and they had nothing to eat.” Repetition is the mother of all learning, and the Lord will now repeat a miracle to show His men who He is. Only God creates something from nothing, so Jesus will now create bread for 4,000, proving He is God. These two feedings were very different from each other.

Last time, Jesus fed 5,000 Jewish men plus women and children, who’d been around one day, sitting on green grass, from five loaves and two fish, resulting in twelve small baskets of leftovers. This time, Jesus feeds 4,000 Gentiles, who’d been around three days, sitting on the ground, from seven loaves and a few fish, with seven huge man-size baskets of leftovers. Though different, they still demonstrate that Jesus is God–God alone is the Creator who can make something from nothing.

Jesus is reminding His men just who He really is–in one sense it’s easy to forget. The Lord’s glory is veiled. He doesn’t glow or have a halo, he doesn’t speak like a speaker system. He eats, sleeps, gets tired, thirsty, hungry like all regular humans. But He’s not only 100% man, He is also 100% God. And they need a reminder of just how powerful Christ truly is.

So in those days, while they are ministering in Decapolis, the ten-city Gentile Roman territory on the east side of the sea of Galilee, they are ministering to large crowds who have not eaten. So along with a reminder that Jesus is God, He is also demonstrating that their God is compassionate. Look at verses 1 to 3, “Jesus called His disciples and said to them, 2 ‘I feel compassion for the people because they have remained with Me now three days and have nothing to eat. 3 If I send them away hungry to their homes, they will faint on the way; and some of them have come from a great distance.’”

Jesus calls his men to gather round, and expresses arguably the strongest verb in this passage—“I feel compassion.” This crowd won’t go home, they’ve been there for three days, they value the Lord’s Words and miracles more than their necessary food. Christ is so attractive, so magnetic, so astonishing they won’t leave. And if the Lord sends them home, they’ll pass out from hunger. And many of the thousands have traveled from a long way away.

Think–when is the last time you went three days without food? These people are hungry and are in need. So the Lord feels compassion (verse 2). The Greek word “compassion” describes the vital organs–the heart, lungs liver and kidneys.  But here it’s used metaphorically to describe the seat of the emotions. The Lord is emotionally gripped by His concern for this mass of Gentiles, and the reason He calls His disciples to gather around Him is He wants them to share in His compassion. He wants them to feel the way He does towards these people. He desires for His men to be burdened for their great need, and hurt for their situation.

The verb compassion is present tense continually compassionate. Who are you compassionate for? What affects your gut emotionally because of their great need, outside your family? So many of us only feel compassion for friends and family. Jean and I have seen a young man sleeping at MacDonald’s just before they kick him out. The same boy, we believe, weeks later was sleeping outside on a landscaping lawn next to his bike. And though we’ve not yet made contact, my bride is burdened for this young man. I can tell it affects her–she feels compassion.

In the gospel of Mark, our Lord’s compassion is not directed at His family or friends, but at the leper in Mark 1, Gentiles in Mark 8 and demon possessed in Mark 9. Christ has given you a compassionate heart–are you showing it?

Our Savior, Jesus, is concerned that people in this crowd, possibly women and children, will faint on the way home. The Greek verb “faint” tells us because of their lack of food, the journey will exhaust them, their strength will give out and they will not be able to continue, putting them in mortal danger. So how do the disciples react? Mark 8:4, “And His disciples answered Him, ‘Where will anyone be able to find enough bread here in this desolate place to satisfy these people?’”

Wow–talk about the need for a reminder. The men witnessed the feeding of 15,000+ people back in chapter 6. They were the ones who told Jesus to send them away. They did the math and figured out it would take 200 days’ wage to feed them all. And yet they each picked up a basket (12 total) full of the best uneaten food ever. But in verse 4, their answer to Christ’s question exposes a forgetful heart. It’s as if it never happened. How could they forget?

Yet are we not the same? We doubt the power of God after experiencing it. We forget His amazing gifts given when they were needed most. We try to live in our own strength when we know we can’t.

We forget too–so the Lord reminds them in Mark 8:5 to 7, “And He was asking them, ‘How many loaves do you have?’ And they said, ‘Seven.’ 6 And He directed the people to sit down on the ground; and taking the seven loaves, He gave thanks and broke them, and started giving them to His disciples to serve to them, and they served them to the people. 7 They also had a few small fish; and after He had blessed them, He ordered these to be served as well.”

In front of the Gentiles, the Lord thanks His Father twice–first for the loaves, then second for the fish, to make certain the Gentiles know the source of this blessing is the one true God. Then the Lord creates the miracle in His hands–Jesus literally kept on giving to the disciples to serve them, so they might serve the people. More food kept appearing in His hands. Can you imagine what’s going through the minds of the disciples? “Bummer, I shouldn’t have asked, ‘where will we find enough bread?’” Or, “Why doesn’t Jesus do this at every meal?” Or possibly, “How exactly is Jesus doing this?”

They had plenty of time to think, since verse 8 says, “And they ate and were satisfied; and they picked up seven large baskets full of what was left over of the broken pieces.” To say, “they ate and were satisfied” is a repeat of the question the disciples ask in verse 4, “Where will anyone be able to find enough bread here in the desolate place to satisfy these people?”

Jesus is able, and Jesus does satisfy. No one went away hungry. The Lord’s supernatural bread satisfies the Gentiles here just like this supernatural bread satisfied the Jews in the previous super feeding. So let me ask you–how do you react when you are around a dedicated Muslim or a committed Hindu? What goes on in your mind and heart? The Lord has compassion for all men–even these Gentile pagans, most of whom worshiped false gods, multiple gods.

And Mark tells us there were seven baskets left over. The Greek term basket here is altogether different than the twelve handheld baskets from the feeding of the 5,000. The basket here is the same type of basket Paul was placed into when he was lowered over a wall in Acts 9. These seven are full, man-size baskets of leftovers. The Lord always exceeds our expectations. He loves exceeding the demand. Our Lord Jesus is generous to those in genuine need.

And in verse 9 Mark says, “About four thousand were there; and He sent them away.” Some versions add 4,000 men, but that is not accurate. The Bible tells us in the previous feeding it was 5,000 men plus women and children, which is why we say it could be up to 15 or 20 thousand.  Here in Mark 8 the text tells us it was a total of 4,000 people—4,000 men, women and children.

So there is a huge difference in the size of the crowd with the feedings, but there is no difference in the power of God incarnate. Jesus is God from Heaven–He is Bread from Heaven, the Bread of Life. You must eat this bread in order to live eternally. You must be one with Christ–your sins must fall upon Him fully, and His righteousness must fall upon you fully, so that you can stand in the presence of a perfect, holy God.

Be reminded of His divine power and overwhelming compassion. You love Him, because He first loved you and shed His love abroad in your hearts. Because He knows the hairs on your head, His thoughts toward you exceed the sand of the seashore and He knows when a sparrow hops, He knows exactly what you’re going through. Be reminded about who Jesus is–what He has done for you and His power and compassion. But as the Lord sends the crowd away in verse 9, He’ll also remind us of the danger of allowing our faith to become merely external.

#2  A Reminder of the Danger of EXTERNAL Religion, Verses 10 to 13

demonstrated by the INSANE focus of the Pharisees

Look where the Lord and His men go in verse 10, “And immediately He entered the boat with His disciples and came to the district of Dalmanutha.” Where is Dalmanutha? Thankfully Matthew tells us on this trip, Matthew 15:39, “Sending away the crowds, Jesus got into the boat and came to the region of Magadan.” So they sail from the east side of the lake from Decapolis to the west side of the lake near Gennesaret and Magadan.

Most of the Jews and all the Jewish leaders stayed away from the east side where they just were (the Gentile side of the lake)–but they ruled the west side, so look at verse 11. It’s almost as if they were waiting for Jesus to show. Mark 8:11, “The Pharisees came out and began to argue with Him, seeking from Him a sign from heaven, to test Him.” Mark is very descriptive–they came out.

The idea is like an army, whether they arrived first or heard about the crowd gathering, they blitzed Christ and immediately started arguing. The Greek word “argue” describes an attempt to gain control. They have a dispute–they want to debate. They’re upset. They’re a bunch of bloodthirsty jackals, set on claiming a kill. Let that stop you the next time you are preparing to win your argument. The extremists of error are making demands on the man of truth.

The external, self-righteous, hypocritical rule-keepers are challenging the only perfect, truly righteous, genuine person present. It’s the externalist versus the internalist–traditionalist versus the truth. In a family, you know when an argument is coming on–this’s what’s going down. Their goal? To prove to everyone that Jesus is a fake. They are, verse 11, “seeking from Him a sign from heaven, to test Him.”

They want to test Christ, to test Him–literally to try Him. To demonstrate what He really is–to prove He’s not the Messiah. Their plan is to force Christ to make something happen in the sky. If He tries and fails, He’s a fake. If Christ refuses, He’s a fake. They want Christ to be embarrassed and lose popular support. And they think they have Jesus trapped.

Yet this is a repeat of Satan’s temptation of Christ in the wilderness, when he tried to get Jesus to do something spectacular, saying if He’d do so, then Satan would give Christ all the kingdoms of the world. It was a temptation to take the easy way out, apart from the Father’s will and not becoming our substitute for sin on the cross.

They want, verse 11, “a sign from Heaven.” Forget Christ has already been raising the dead, restoring limbs, giving the mute speech and the deaf hearing, cleansing the leper, casting out demons. Forget that He has supernaturally created bread to feed thousands. Forget that Christ has fulfilled all the Old Testament description of the true Messiah’s abilities and power–all the biblical signs. That is not enough for them.

These hateful hypocrites want something celestial in the sky–like when a star pointed to Christ as a baby in Bethlehem, and like when God will turn day into night at noon to 3 while God’s wrath is being poured out on Christ on the cross for our sin. They want that kind of heavenly sign. Heavenly signs in the Old Testament proved God’s love for His people by delivering them out of Egypt, Exodus 7–and signs also authenticated that a prophet was from God, Deuteronomy 3.

Give us what we want–it doesn’t matter that you’ve fulfilled all the Old Testament prophesies of the miraculous abilities of the Messiah. It doesn’t matter that you have supernaturally healed thousands. It doesn’t matter that you just fed 4,000–show us a heavenly sign. Do what we say and give us something more–the Bible is not enough. The Lord’s supernatural, only God could do these, miracles are not enough.

Friends, beware of seeking signs, of wanting something more—more than what God has given us through His sufficient Word. These leaders had seen more than enough–yet they already dismissed Jesus, saying His miracles were empowered by Satan. What’s to stop them now from calling any celestial sign Christ might perform from having its source in Satan as well?

We live by faith, not by signs–we’re to believe Christ by who He is and what He has done in His Word, not by demanding more external manifestations–more proof. So you can see why Christ responds the way He does in verse 12, “Sighing deeply in His spirit, He said, ‘Why does this generation seek for a sign? Truly I say to you, no sign will be given to this generation.’” In Matthew 16:4 Jesus said it this way, “’An evil and adulterous generation seeks after a sign; and a sign will not be given it, except the sign of Jonah.’ And He left them and went away.”

In Matthew Jesus says the only sign they’ll get is the resurrection. But Jesus is even more intense in the gospel of Mark, verse 12 here. If I say to you, “If you continue to drive that fast . . . “ but don’t finish the sentence, you have a pretty good idea how I would finish that sentence. “If you continue to drive that fast, you’re gonna die—or get into an accident bad.”

Well Christ is angry here. And the Greek phrase, “No sign will be given”, is actually an incomplete sentence–the listener is expected to finish. It literally says, “If shall be given to this generation a sign . . . ” with the implied ending—“may God punish me” or “over my dead body”. The Greek construction is characteristic of a Hebrew oath, suggesting intense emotion. Christ is intense here–why? He knows the hardness of their hearts. Christ is intensely emotional over the hardness of people’s hearts–why? Their eternity is at stake. They’re slamming the door to heaven shut, leaving them only one possible option–the Lake of Fire, or Hell.

We have students here who have imperfect parents and friends, but those flawed families know Christ and want to please Christ, yet their students are hardening their hearts to Christ. And those very students wonder, “Why are my folks so intense about this–what is the big deal?” Answer: they know the heart of Christ, and react like He does to the hardening of a heart, knowing it may lead to eternal punishment forever in Hell.

“Well,” some think, “I’ll have my fun now, then turn to Christ later.” It doesn’t work that way–look at verse 13, “Leaving them, He again embarked and went away to the other side.” I will not cast my pearls before swine–what a terrible thing it is to have Christ turn His back on you and sail away, but that is exactly what Christ does to those who continually refuse His revelation and reject His words.

There comes a time when Christ gives no more signs and no more help in understanding. We don’t know when that stops, but we do know it happens and it will happen in the future. As the end times approach, 2 Thessalonians 2:10 to 12 tells us, “They did not receive the love of the truth so as to be saved. 11 For this reason God will send upon them a deluding influence so that they will believe what is false, 12 in order that they all may be judged who did not believe the truth, but took pleasure in wickedness.” They’ll buy the lie of the enemy, and will not be able to submit to Christ in salvation.

What a crucial reminder–don’t seek signs, seek the Savior. Don’t live by sight, live by faith. Don’t harden your heart, but remain humble before God. The enemy is a liar. Satan says you can do your own thing–you don’t need Christ. And the Pharisees think it’s no problem to diss the Lord. As Jesus gets His men out of there, it leads to . . .

#3  A Reminder of the STRUGGLE of Genuine Faith  Verses 14 to 21

demonstrated by the INANE dullness of the disciples

All of this starts with . . .

First  A PROVIDENTIAL circumstance

Mark 8:14, “And they had forgotten to take bread, and did not have more than one loaf in the boat with them.” In verse 13 they loaded up the boat, leaving the Jewish west side of the lake, and headed back to the no Pharisee zone east side. They had access to plenty of bread. They had seven giant leftover basket loads from the feeding of the 4,000. But in their hurry, they left without a single scrap of bread. Can you hear Peter tell this to Mark? Can’t you hear Peter’s eyewitness account of the frustration of this moment? In verse 14, “and did not have more than one loaf in the boat with them.” But the Lord didn’t care about material bread, He cares about healthy spiritual food, heavenly bread, the truth of God’s Word.

Second  A POINTED warning

Mark 8:15, “And He was giving orders to them, saying, ‘Watch out! Beware of the leaven of the Pharisees and the leaven of Herod.’” The Lord wants to turn their attention to the most important. Mark wants you to know just how intense Christ is here when he says He was giving orders to them–this came from Christ Himself. And the Lord gives the only two commands in this entire passage right here–watch out and beware. This is an order, boys, and it is ongoing–meaning this is a standing order, men. What is it? Continually keep your eyes open and look for this kind of trouble.

There are bad drivers, good drivers and professional drivers. Professional drivers not only pay attention to the road, but they look out for the other guy, they assume everyone else actually got their license at Kmart, on a blue light special. Professional drivers look at everyone else on the road as a horrible driver and a potential threat to safety. That is what Jesus is commanding His men to do–pay attention and look out for this bad bread. What does the Lord call it? Verse 15, “Beware of the leaven of the Pharisees and the leaven of Herod.”

Leaven is the yeast used to make bread rise–just a little will cause the entire loaf to rise and make bread. So the New Testament uses the concept of leaven as influence–almost always, as it is here, as evil influence. Beware is look out, look out for it, watch out, stop it–whenever you see the evil influence of the Pharisees and Herod. Simply stated, the leaven of the Pharisees is spiritual externalism–and the leaven of Herod is secular externalism. Watch out when anyone teaches you to look good spiritually on the outside without dealing with the heart on the inside.

Hey, if family reputation is more important than truth, that’s you. And watch out when anyone teaches you to look good secularly on the outside without dealing with the heart on the inside. Don’t be a religious hypocrite, and don’t be a trendy hypocrite. Don’t appear to be spiritual with a weak heart, and don’t appear to be successful, political, philanthropic with a fallen heart.

Standing order, men–don’t be phony at any level in any way. Don’t worry about external bread–be concerned about internal bread. Don’t worry about physical bread and avoid poisoned bread–avoid the loaf of lies. But like us, the men miss the point. They’re still thinking about bread.

Third  A PROBLEMATIC perspective

Mark 8:16, “They began to discuss with one another the fact that they had no bread.” Jesus tells His men not to buy what the Pharisees and Herod are selling. But they don’t get it. Jesus used the word leaven so they’re still thinking the Lord is concerned about not having bread. It turns into a 12-man discussion. It might have even turned into a “whose fault was it” debate—“You’re the one who had the bread” . . . “No–it was Andrew’s turn” . . . “Yes, but Philip had it before we left.”

The disciples are on a different radio frequency than the Lord. They see a shortage of bread, and the Lord is tuned in to the poison of religious and secular hypocrisy. Both kinds of leaven were a rejection of internal salvation. So as the men quibble over bread, the cancer of unbelief is eating away at their souls, so Jesus makes . . .

Fourth  A PASSIONATE plea

I was talking to one of our saints two weeks ago, and she was thankful for the way the Lord carefully, gently, tenderly exposed pride in her life. And her husband and I agreed, with us He needs to hit us over the head for us to really get it. Maybe that is the way men learn–and what you have in verses 17 to 18 is not quiet tender leading, it is smacks to the heart.

Look at Mark 8:17 and 18, “And Jesus, aware of this, said to them, ‘Why do you discuss the fact that you have no bread? [bam] Do you not yet see or understand? [smack] Do you have a hardened heart? [slug] 18 Having eyes, do you not see? [hit] And having ears, do you not hear? [wham] And do you not remember? [smash]’” My own men have missed the point. There’re two major keys here.

1 Don’t focus on EXTERNALS–this is not about bread

Don’t you see the real issue? Don’t you perceive the real point, or have you internally hardened your heart? This is not about food, externals, but about your heart and what is dangerous to it.

2 Make sure you focus on what’s really IMPORTANT

Use your eyes to see what is important–listen to what is best, and do you remember what is really important? What is?

Fifth  A PURPOSEFUL provision and perception

Mark 8:19 to 21, “’When I broke the five loaves for the five thousand, how many baskets full of broken pieces you picked up?’ They said to Him, ‘Twelve.’  20 ‘When I broke the seven for the four thousand, how many large baskets full of broken pieces did you pick up?’ And they said to Him, ‘Seven.’ 21 And He was saying to them, ‘Do you not yet understand?’” A key to remember is Jesus will provide all the bread you need–stop focusing on external bread and start focusing on your internal heart.

Crucial to recall–don’t be like the Pharisees and Herodians, who only focus on the externals like bread, food, eating, but focus on where your heart is with God and where others are. But the point of this passage, the crucial key to remember–don’t you understand who I am? Only God creates from nothing. Had they remembered the point of the feedings, they would realize that they are in the presence of omnipotence, all power. Jesus says in verse 21, “Do you not yet understand?”

So I ask you today, “Do you not yet understand?” Or even more pointed for Christians, “Have you forgotten? Christian, are you reminded of who Christ is?”

1 Are you DEAD or DULL or DEVOTED?

In Mark, the Lord has been focusing on the heart. Have there been any changes/repentance in your heart as a result? If not, it may mean you’re DEAD or DULL. Familiarity breeds contempt, and familiarity breeds complacency. Because of familiarity, have you allowed your heart to harden? Because you have been a Christian for years, have you lost your first love, your passion for Christ first in all things? If so, repent of your sin today, and dive back into His Word, prayer, service, outreach and acts of compassion with boldness.

2 Are you trusting God for the OUTSIDE and focusing on the INSIDE?

Stop stressing over externals–God will take care of your need. Matthew 6:33, “But seek first His kingdom and His righteousness, and all these things will be added to you.” If you’re trusting in Matthew 6:33, you won’t worry about your needs. If you’re not trusting Matthew 6:33, you’ll worry about your needs. Stop stressing. It is not your poor job or bad paycheck–it is your heart. It’s not whether you get a date, it’s whether you trust God’s control.

3 Are you pretending you’re hot, when you’re really LUKEWARM?

Are you pretending all is okay when there’s major sin in your life, or in your home? Are you talking Jesus, but there is no commitment in your walk? Do you say you follow Christ, but there is no pursuit of Christ? You think of yourself as committed, but go to Disneyland instead of church? Jesus warns His men to beware of the influence of spiritual and secular externalism–spiritual and secular hypocrisy.

We’re surrounded by people who claim to know Christ, but they’re far from God and not born again. We live by people in our world who live nice, act nice and talk nice, but they’re not nice in God’s eyes but rebellious sinners. And the danger you and I face is to be influenced by their externalism and think we are okay as long as we appear okay, when we know our hearts are not okay with Christ. What I am telling you is not FBC hardline, super committed–this is the normal expectation of Christ for every true Christian. We just live in a world that has moved far away from truth.

4 Are you growing intimate through daily DEPENDENCE?

You can’t live for Christ in your own strength so you must depend. But you also exercise your will dependently and make choices–like being in God’s Word, committing to prayer, getting discipled, attending church, sharing the Gospel, showing compassion. Are you growing? And if not, step out this week dependently. Make some steps today. And take the lead, men. Get your family up on time, make Sunday fun. Take them to RMG every week without fail. Drive your students to Wednesday night. Take ‘em out to fast food they love once a week, and talk about what they are hearing from God’s Word. And most of all, show them your passion to pursue Christ and know His Word.

5 Are you remembering God’s CARE for you?

If Christ showed compassion to a bunch of pagan Gentiles, then all the more, He will show compassion to His own children. Jean and I text each other on those days I am gone a long time. It means a lot to know she is thinking about me, and me her. But that is nothing compared to how often God thinks of you. Psalm 139:17 and 18, “How precious also are Your thoughts to me, O God! How vast is the sum of them! 18 If I should count them, they would outnumber the sand.” God cares about your needs and your worries. First Peter 5:7, “Casting all your anxiety on Him, because He cares for you.” Don’t forget His love for you, the cross and constant care.

6 God saves those who SURRENDER unconditionally to Christ

God was born a human, lived a perfect life, took our punishment on the cross for our sins, then rose from the dead and lives to make you right with God–but you must turn from sin to Christ. Repent now.

About Chris Mueller

Chris is the teaching pastor at Faith Bible Church - Murrieta.

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