Mark 12:1-27 begins with Jesus telling the parable of the unfaithful tenants, and after that the Pharisees tried to entrap Jesus with the question “Is it right to pay taxes to Caesar?” You know the answer, if not, check it and ponder. Then it was the Sadducees’ turn to entrap him with the question what happens to marriage at the Resurrection. Jesus answered: “He is not the God of the dead, but the God of the living: ye therefore do greatly err.”
Ruth 1. Elimelech’s family went to Moab, and all the men in the family died. Naomi returned back to Israel with Ruth, a Moabite. The famous quote from Ruth 1: “Intreat me not to leave thee, or to return from following after thee: for whither thou goest, I will go; and where thou lodgest, I will lodge: thy people shall be my people, and thy God my God:”.
Mark 11 starts what is called the Holy Week with the Triumphal Entry into Jerusalem. Jesus entered, riding on an unbroken foal of a donkey. This was the sign. The next day Jesus cursed a fig tree (symbol of Israel) and cleared the Temple of the money-exchangers (You don’t want to give too much, you know). Following morning the fig tree was withered, and all marveled. Finally, Jesus authority was questioned by the religious authorities.
Proverbs 1. It extols the virtue of wisdom. Read it and apply it. Wis
Psalm 34, of David. This Psalm is an almost acrostic psalm (except for the letter waw). Like many acrostic Psalms, this is to be sung and memorized as it is full of praise and good advice. It contains one notable prophetic reference: “Many are the afflictions of the righteous, But the LORD delivers him out of them all. He guards all his bones; Not one of them is broken.”
Mark 10:17-52. A Rich Young Ruler asks what he must do to receive eternal life, but he cannot make himself do what Jesus required of him, so Jesus commented: ”It is easier for a camel to go through the eye of a needle, than for a rich man to enter into the kingdom of God.” The disciples were astounded and said: “Who then can be saved?” upon which Jesus answered “With men it is impossible, but not with God: for with God all things are possible.” Yes, that’s how it is with salvation. Jesus then predicted his resurrection. James and John wanted to be great, but Jesus pointed out that greatness comes by serving. The chapter finally ends as Jesus healed Bartimaeus.
Judges 19 tells in painful detail about the Levite’s Concubine and Gibeah’s crime, probably the most gruesome story in all the Bible. The Bible is honest and tells it as it was, totally wicked.
Judges 20 describes Israel’s War with the Benjamites. Another horrendous chapter.
In Judges 21 they had killed nearly all so the Israelites had to find wives for the Benjamites. The book of Judges ends fittingly: “In those days there was no king in Israel: every man did that which was right in his own eyes,” in other words, anarchy.
In Mark 10:1-16 Jesus explained the Christian concept of Marriage: One man, one woman, one lifetime,“6 But from the beginning of the creation God made them male and female. 7 For this cause shall a man leave his father and mother, and cleave to his wife; 8 And they twain shall be one flesh: so then they are no more twain, but one flesh. 9 What therefore God hath joined together, let not man put asunder.” Then Jesus blessed the little children and said: “Whosoever shall not receive the kingdom of God as a little child, he shall not enter therein.”
Judges 16 contains the vivid story of Samson and Delilah and how he finally was captured. In his death Samson slew many more than when he lived.
Judges 17 is short, contains only the telling of Micah’s Idolatry.
Judges 18, as the Danites had failed to take their allotted land from the Philistines they wandered around and finally settled in Laish and changed the name of the city to Dan, and there they still practiced idolatry.
Mark 9:33-50. Jesus’ disciples argued among themselves who was the greatest. To give a perfect object lesson Jesus picked up a little child and explained what it means to be a servant of all. Jesus taught unity, not division, “whoever is not against us is for us,” and warned of of the dire consequences of offenses and told them to be “salt with savor” and to be at peace with each other.
Judges 12 records Jephthah’s Conflict with Ephraim where they killed people based on their accent. After that three more people, Ibzan, Elon and Abdon led Israel.
Judges 13 tells of bad times for Israel for forty years. Then came a glimmer of hope, the birth of Samson.
Judges 14. Samson started out great, but then he took a Philistine as his Wife.
Judges 15. Samson defeated the Philistines with the jawbone of an ass.