The King’s Pain May 27-31

For the first time Jesus plainly speaks about what no one expected. The Christ, prophesied to be Israel’s mighty and everlasting King, must suffer terrible things, be rejected by the elders, and be killed. But He will rise from the dead. A dead Christ? A condemned King? Dying and rising? Right in the center of Mark’s Gospel, Jesus reveals the heart of His mission, but His disciples cannot grasp it. Rejection and death certainly was not what the disciples were expecting. They expected victory, not defeat. Without paying for our sins by suffering pain on the cross, or defeating death through His resurrection, Jesus’ previous healings and miracles would, at best, have been temporary reprieves. We need to remember this truth—the King’s pain is our balm.     


Day 1 Mark 8:27-319:30-32

Reflect: What is significant about Jesus’ timing to share what will happen to Him? Would the disciples be confused about who Jesus said would reject and kill Him? Why?

Apply:   Of the four things Jesus prophesied about Himself, which do you think most surprised His disciples? Describe how Jesus’ death is our victory. 

Pray:    Jesus, Your glorious victory means death is dead. The cross has not lost any of its ancient power; it  is the single means of overcoming the world, the flesh, and the devil, for all believers who choose to abide in You and You in them.  Believers win because You won!  


Day 2     Mark 12:1-12

Reflect: In this parable, who do each of the characters represent? What is Jesus communicating about Himself? Why did the man’s son suffer and die; and what resulted?

Apply:   When have you ever been mistreated because of your faith in Christ? How does a relationship with Jesus change how you think about death? 

Pray:    Jesus, You know that rejection is one of the most painful things of life. When the world mistreats Your followers, may it point us to You, as a reminder of Your unfailing love and acceptance.


Day 3       Isaiah 53:1-12

Reflect: What speaks loudest to you in this text? Why? How was Jesus a “man of sorrows and suffering”? How does this text change your perspective of what is most important in life? 

Apply:   Take some time to meditate on the things Jesus suffered for you—your sin and shame that He bore in your place. Be specific and thank Him.

Pray:     Jesus, let the truth of what You’ve done penetrate my heart and allow Your great love for me to mold and shape me to do Your will. May I not only praise You with my lips but honor You with my life.


Day 4      1 Peter 2:20-25 

Reflect: From Jesus, what do we learn about how to respond when facing unfair suffering or difficult situations? What reasons are given for Christ’s death on the cross? 

Apply:   Jesus taught us to be humble, meek, to forgive, not to retaliate. How can you grow in these qualities, learning to give up your perceived rights? What does verse 24 mean to you?

Pray:    Jesus, thank You that You took the full force of the wrath of God so that I might die to those sins and live righteously in You.


Day 5      Hebrews 12:1-3

Reflect: In what do you think the joy set before Jesus is referencing? How does considering the persecution and pain Jesus faced help us to not grow weary?   

Apply:   Has God called you to face a difficulty that perhaps you’ve grown weary or have lost heart?In light of this passage, what should you do? 

Pray:     Give me perseverance as I press on in the power of the Holy Spirit. May I patiently endure and overcome any obstacles that would stop me from being a living witness to Your Word of truth. 


Put It Into Practice!

Reflect on this Q & A.— Q: Why did Jesus have to die?  A: Because He deserved it.  Let this sink in. On the cross, Jesus took all the sin of the world upon Himself. So at that moment, He deserved the consequences of sin. He stepped in to take the punishment we deserve.  When you are tempted to sin, remember this truth as a reminder of how gravely serious sin is.