Seeing Jesus

At the center of his Gospel, Mark placed Peter’s confession that Jesus is the Messiah. Up to this point the underlying question has been, “Who is he?” After Peter’s declaration on behalf of the twelve, Mark’s narrative is oriented toward the Cross and the Resurrection. This crucial passage is the pivotal point to which the first half of the book leads, and from which the second half proceeds. 

Jesus opens _________ eyes (Mark 8:22-26)

We may ______________, but we are blind to ___________ (Mark 8:27-33) 

When we see clearly, ________________________ (Mark 8:34-9:1)

Main Idea: Embrace Jesus and follow him through the suffering to the glory.

Connecting

If you lost your sight, what would you miss seeing the most? What do you notice about the blind man and his friends in Mark 8:22-26? What is unique about this healing? 

Why does Jesus take the man outside the city to heal him? Why does he tell him not to go back to the village (Mark 8:26)? How is this healing connected to the disciple’s “blindness” (8:17-19)?

Understanding

Mark 8:27ff marks a turning point for Jesus. When he asks what people say about him, what answers are given (8:27-28)? Why is Peter’s response significant (8:29-30; Matthew 16:17-19)? Why does Jesus say to keep it quiet (8:30)? 

In Mark 8:31-33, why is Jesus’ prediction of his suffering, death and resurrection upsetting to Peter and the disciples? What does Jesus mean by telling Peter to “Get behind me Satan”? What do “Satan” and the “things of men” have in common that makes Jesus link them together?  

Read Mark 8:34-9:1. To whom is Jesus speaking and why is this important? What does it mean to deny self, take up our cross and follow Jesus (8:34)? What is the attitude and behavior of the person who wants to “save his life” (8:35)?

Living

As you reflect on your own understanding of Jesus, what blind spots or blurred perspectives do you have regarding Jesus’ identity, mission and calling on your life? Where do you see clearly?  

If you were to list ways in which people try to “gain the world but lose their soul” (8:34), what things would be on it? Which of these are particularly tempting to you? How does the gospel motivate us to lose our life in order to save it? 

Assignment: How has your relationship with Jesus affected the way you live? How does his call to deny self, take up your cross and follow him impact your relationships, priorities, politics, witness and future (Romans 8:16-17)? Memorize Mark 8:34-36. Meditate on the Lord’s Supper

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