Today’s Reading: Mark 11
Key Verse: Mark 11:26
…But if you do not forgive, neither will your Father in heaven forgive your trespasses.
In the first 10 verses, Jesus meticulously fulfills prophecy (Zechariah 9:9 & Psalm 118:26). He then follows up by communicating His authority over nature, the fig tree, and over the activities surrounding the worship of God in the Temple. Mark concludes this chapter by quoting the religious leaders saying, “We do not know” (verse 33). Their biggest concern seemed to be the politics of the day. The core message of this passage concerns forgiveness. This has eternal importance for each of us. Unforgiveness blocks the forgiveness we all need from God. Jesus warns us in a most forceful way. This is one truth that we must receive and act upon today and every day.
PRAYER FOR TODAY:
Lord Jesus I ask for grace to forgive others and the grace to accept the forgiveness offered to me by others. Having done this I am confident that as I ask for Your forgiveness for my sins against You, Lord God, You forgive me. Amen!
100 PERSONAL WORDS:
I can’t help but refer again to my minister Dad. He described the religious leaders of Jesus’ day, and often today also, with this couplet: “They wobble in and wobble out, and leave the people all in doubt.” The “we do not know” answer to a question about the great prophet John the Baptist is not acceptable. Immediately after our marriage 56 years ago, Norma-Jean and I accepted the call to pastor a congregation in Brighton, Ontario. We had lots of sports for our youth, and it came to my ears that a neighboring pastor had called our Church, “The Brighton Sports Centre.” I was hurt by this and to my shame I nursed a grudge until the Holy Spirit pushed me to go to this pastor and to ask his forgiveness for not forgiving him. He didn’t even know that I knew what he had said. I was forgiven, but as far as I knew he continued to believe that sports were not right for the activities of a pastor and church. I had to let it go. Nevertheless, several teenagers came to know Jesus as a direct result of the friendships developed through sports.
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