Friday after the Sixth Sunday after Trinity Sunday
Posted on July 16, 2021 byunder
Scripture: St. Mark 8:13-21 (NKJV)
8:13 And He left them, and getting into the boat again, departed to the other side.
14 Now the disciples had forgotten to take bread, and they did not have more than one loaf with them in the boat. 15 Then He charged them, saying, “Take heed, beware of the leaven of the Pharisees and the leaven of Herod.”
16 And they reasoned among themselves, saying, “It is because we have no bread.”
17 But Jesus, being aware of it, said to them, “Why do you reason because you have no bread? Do you not yet perceive nor understand? Is your heart still hardened? 18 Having eyes, do you not see? And having ears, do you not hear? And do you not remember? 19 When I broke the five loaves for the five thousand, how many baskets full of fragments did you take up?”
They said to Him, “Twelve.”
20 “Also, when I broke the seven for the four thousand, how many large baskets full of fragments did you take up?”
And they said, “Seven.”
21 So He said to them, “How is it you do not understand?”
The leaven of the Pharisees was false holiness, in which they trusted their works for salvation and rewards. The leaven of Herod and the Sadducees was false freedom, in which they lived immoral lives. The leaven of both destroys a God-pleasing life of faithfulness and thanksgiving. The disciples think that Jesus is speaking about earthly bread and worldly concerns for daily sustenance. This warning for the disciples to “take heed” is not about the lack of provisions on the lonely eastern shore of the lake. Jesus is seriously concerned about spiritual dangers.
Human reason, the perception of the senses, and logical understanding are all affected by the heart. Jesus asks, “Is your heart still hardened?” Their eyes still see what they want to see. Their ears hear Jesus’ words, but they put their own meaning into the words. They do not remember the gracious miracles which Jesus performed. Jesus’ question, “How is it you do not understand?” is designed to get them to acknowledge their spiritual dullness.
The only way that we can open our lips is for God to graft into our hearts the love of His name. The only way for us to make a right judgment is for God to increase in us true religion. The words of our Savior Jesus Christ lead us to take heed, repent of our sins, and trust in Him for forgiveness.
Prayer: O God, who hast prepared for them that love Thee such good things as pass man’s understanding, pour into our hearts such love toward Thee that we, loving Thee above all things, may obtain Thy promises, which exceed all that we can desire; through Jesus Christ, Thy Son, our Lord, who liveth and reigneth with Thee and the Holy Ghost, ever one God, world without end. Amen.
Scripture taken from the New King James Version®. Copyright © 1982 by Thomas Nelson. Used by permission. All rights reserved.