March 28, 2022 – Monday
Mark 1:14-15 NIV
14 After John was put in prison, Jesus went into Galilee, proclaiming the good news of God.
15 “The time has come,” he said. “The kingdom of God has come near. Repent and believe the good news!”
There is very little context here other than shortly before this John baptized Jesus and Just as Jesus was coming up out of the water, he saw heaven being torn open16 and the Spirit descending on him like a dove. And a voice came from heaven: “You are my Son, whom I love; with you I am well pleased.” But Mark is the most action oriented of the three synoptic gospels, so then we read, At once the Spirit sent him out into the wilderness, and he was in the wilderness forty days, being tempted by Satan. He was with the wild animals, and angels attended him. Then we have our two verses of the day with no explanation. We know from Matthew and Luke why and when John was put in prison, but not in Mark, at least not until Mark 6:17-20. In Mark you will find more At once or Immediately than in any of the other gospels.
So, we know Jesus was baptized in the Jordan river, then sent into the wilderness, and after John was imprisoned He went into Galilee. What was He doing in Galilee? He was proclaiming the good news of God. Here proclaiming may also read preaching, however the usage in the bible is to proclaim after the manner of a herald and always with the suggestion of formality, gravity and an authority which must be listened to and obeyed.
What did Jesus proclaim or preach, The time has come. The kingdom of God has come near. Repent and believe the good news! The NIV only appends an exclamation mark (!) after the final statement in the verse, but if I read as if I am hearing it, it seems as if there should be an exclamation mark after each sentence as they are all important and profound. If you accept what Jesus is saying that The time has come and The kingdom of God has come near, then one had best be about the business of repenting and believing the good news!
The reason for being about the business of repenting and believing the good news is clearly found in Luke 16:19-31 which Pastor Luke Stephens covered very well Sunday, March 27, 2022 here. A rich man waited too long to consider his eternal fate and ended up in hell for all eternity. Too many people want to wait until five minutes before midnight (the symbolic time of their death) and then repent. But the actual time is almost never know and someone waiting until the hoped for five minutes before midnight may find the ‘train’ has arrived at 11:30 PM or even earlier. And then it is too late for them.
Bottom line: Make up your mind and repent and believe the good news for we never really know when our own personal ‘train’ is going to arrive. Better to live one’s life knowing your eternal destination is with God than always risking spending eternity in hell.
Prayer: Almighty God, Jesus not only came with the Good News, but with the imperative – The time has come – to repent and believe the Good News. Help us to take His message seriously and to share it with others as well. – In Jesus’ Name. Amen.
Riley D. Driver – Pastor
Calvary Chapel of Dayton