TRUST: People seek to Debate the Truth


In response to Jesus, we saw the people in verses 1-12 demonstrate TRUST: People Seek to Disregard the Truth. In verse 13-17, we see people reveal TRUST: People Seek to Discredit the Truth. Today, in verses 18-27, we see TRUST: People Seek to Deceive the Truth. Today,in verses 28-34,we see TRUST: People seek to Debate the Truth.

So far in the passage from much of the power Jewish power structure or authorities of the day, Jesus has endured efforts to disregard, to discredit and to deceive Him. Now, we see an attempt to debate Him, but as with the other attempts, Jesus, through His teaching, disses them too. He disarms them all.

Mark 12

28 One of the teachers of the law came and heard them debating. Noticing that Jesus had given them a good answer, he asked him, “Of all the commandments, which is the most important?”

29 “The most important one,” answered Jesus, “is this: ‘Hear, O Israel: The Lord our God, the Lord is one. 30 Love the Lord your God with all your heart and with all your soul and with all your mind and with all your strength.’ 31 The second is this: ‘Love your neighbor as yourself.’ There is no commandment greater than these.”

32 “Well said, teacher,” the man replied. “You are right in saying that God is one and there is no other but him. 33 To love him with all your heart, with all your understanding and with all your strength, and to love your neighbor as yourself is more important than all burnt offerings and sacrifices.”

34 When Jesus saw that he had answered wisely, he said to him, “You are not far from the kingdom of God.” And from then on no one dared ask him any more questions.

TRUST: People seek to Debate the Truth. One of the teachers of the law indicates that this person has been well trained and is now teaching and training others in the Mosaic Law. We can fully surmise that this person would have been an expert in his day. In fact, the text tells that he made an assessment of Jesus’ response to Sadducees. “Noticing that Jesus had given them a good answer, he asked him, “Of all the commandments, which is the most important?”” The teacher of the law recognized the soundness and authority of Jesus’ response about the resurrection, so he decides to enter the fray of challenging Jesus’ authority. Remember, the chief priests, the teachers of the law and the elders came to him in Mark 11:28 asking 28 “By what authority are you doing these things?” … “And who gave you authority to do this?” Rather than give them a simple response as they wanted to use against Him, Jesus demonstrated His authority. Despite that, we see TRUST: People seek to Debate the Truth.

In the verses today, TRUST: People seek to Debate the Truth is observed in the question asked by one of the teachers of the law. He asked “Of all the commandments, which is the most important?” Up to this time, we have to remember that God’s Word was considered what we now call the Old Testament of which the law or Mosaic text was highly esteemed. In another attempt to trap Jesus, the teacher wanted Jesus to respond in a way that demeaned or decrease the value of the law. Jesus, being omniscient, was aware and used His response to defeat this attempt to Debate the Truth. By virtue of the question from the teacher of the law, Jesus was supposed to choose among the commandments the one that was the most important. Jesus did not respond accordingly. His response morphed the guided question into the proper perspective and position. Essentially, Jesus redefines the pursuit of God. He positioned His response akin to 1 Samuel 15:22 which says “Does the Lord delight in burnt offerings and sacrifices as much as in obeying the LordTo obey is better than sacrifice,  and to heed is better than the fat of rams”. The most important law is love manifested in love for God then love manifested for mankind. For Jesus had already said “Anyone who loves me will obey my teaching. ” (John 14)

Again, Jesus had triumphed over His challengers by teaching them not by demeaning, beating or over powering them through force. He simply loved them. He loved them enough to overlook their evil intentions to not only teach them the truth in Word but also in deed. TRUST: People seek to Debate the Truth, but Jesus is the way, the truth and the life. He is what He is. He just lived what He is and thus triumphed. His desire for us is live in love and triumph.

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

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