10/20/14 “Comprehending the Depths of God’s Word” (Daily Bible Reading: Mark 10-12)

“Jesus answered and said to them, ‘Are you not therefore mistaken, because you do not know the Scriptures nor the power of God?’ ” (Mark 12:24).

How well do you know God’s Word? Do you find you are constantly discovering new things about God and His Will each time you study it or has do you find your Bible gathering dust because you feel like when you read it your just not getting anything more out of it that is applicable to your life?

As Jesus arrived in Jerusalem towards the end of His ministry, He begins to be questioned by those who oppose Him. Different groups come to Him trying to test Him hoping to “catch Him in His words” (Mark 12:13). One of these groups were the Sadducees who did not believe in the resurrection of the dead (Mark 12:18). They come to Jesus reciting the law of Moses and how it taught that if a man’s brother died and left behind a wife with no children, the dead man’s brother was to marry her and raise up children on behalf of his dead brother (Mark 12:19; cf. Deuteronomy 25:5). Then the Sadducees come up with an outlandish illustration about how the other brothers each die after, in turn, having married this woman and in the end she still has no children (Mark 12:20-22). They finish this story with a question that they are sure will stump Jesus and prove their point that there must not be a resurrection of the dead. They ask, “Therefore, in the resurrection, when they rise, whose wife will she be? For all seven had her as wife" (Mark 12:23).

What is interesting is these folks could “quote” the Word of God, but did they “understand” or “comprehend” the Word of God? As the opening verse above shows, Jesus rebukes them and tells them they were mistaken for two reasons: (1) They did not “know the Scriptures”, and (2) they did not know the “power of God” (Mark 12:24). They had failed to dig deep enough into God’s Word to comprehend its depth of teaching and they did not have enough faith in God’s power that He can perform things which are far beyond our human experience or understanding.

After stating that following the resurrection of the dead people will not be married (Mark 12:25), Jesus refers them to another Scripture they should have considered before reaching their false conclusion that there is no resurrection. God’s Son says, “But concerning the dead, that they rise, have you not read in the book of Moses, in the burning bush passage, how God spoke to him, saying, 'I am the God of Abraham, the God of Isaac, and the God of Jacob'?” (Mark 12:26). Please note: Jesus expected them to take note of the verb tense in that verse (i.e. “I am the God of…” not “I was the God of…”) and to draw from this passage the conclusion that Abraham, Isaac, and Jacob were still alive and would be raised from the grave! Jesus then adds the conclusion they should have reached if they had made more effort in trying to comprehend all the Scriptures: “He is not the God of the dead, but the God of the living. You are therefore greatly mistaken" (Mark 12:27).

God’s Word is a well from which we can keep drawing out more and more spiritual insights about God and His Will for our lives if we will take the time to be diligent to study it (cf. 2 Timothy 2:15). We need to ask God to help us to understand His Will as we study His Word (cf. Psalm 119:34). It is no wonder we are encourage to desire God’s Word as a newborn babe desires it’s mother’s milk (1 Peter 2:2). Today, I will strive to look into the depths of God’s Word and comprehend the awesome guidance and understanding it brings to me about God and His Will for my life!

I will meditate on Your precepts, and contemplate Your ways. I will delight myself in Your statutes; I will not forget Your word” (Psalm 119:15-16).