Today’s reading out of the Gospel of Mark records the second most important event on the Christian calendar, the death of Jesus Christ on the cross (the most important occurred three days later, the resurrection of our Lord and savior, Jesus Christ.) The two chapters of Deuteronomy are review of Israels failures, but in spite of that God keeps His promises.
March 15: Mark 15, Deuteronomy 9, Deuteronomy 10 (click on the chapter to begin reading)
Mark 15. Early in the morning Jesus was brought before Pilate since only the Romans could execute capital punishment. Pilate, trying to get out of the situation offered to release Barabbas, a known murderer and insurrectionist, or Jesus and the crowd chose Barabbas. Pilate gave in to the crowd, the Soldiers mocked Jesus, and so the Crucifixion of Jesus the King began. Read it carefully. Jesus Died, spiked on the cross, and at the same time the Temple veil was rent in two, from top to bottom, opening up for us full access to God himself. Finally Jesus’ burial is recorded.
Deuteronomy 9, Israel’s rebellion is reviewed, but in spite of being a stiffnecked people doing abominations to the LORD like the Golden Calf, God in His mercy kept His promises.
Deuteronomy 10, take Two Tablets, Fear the LORD and circumcise your hearts, that is the Essence of the Law. Remember, you too were aliens in Egypt.
February 22: Matthew 27, Numbers 1 (click on the chapter to begin reading)
Matthew 27 depicts the longest day, beginning with Jesus being handed over to Pilate, the Roman governor; since the Jews did not have right to execute capital punishment. Judas hanged himself and the thirty pieces of silver given him in exchange for the betrayal of Jesus was used to buy the Potter’s field. Pilate tried to wiggle out of his role as a judge, his wife had warned him, so he came up with the idea to release one prisoner at Passover which was the custom. Pilate chose Jesus or Barabbas to be released and of the two the people chose Barabbas to be released and Jesus to be crucified. Pilate acquiesced to the mob and so Jesus was flogged by the soldiers for a public spectacle and then he was led away, but after the flogging Jesus was too weak to carry his own cross, so they forced Simon from Cyrene to carry Jesus cross all the way to the place of the skull, and there Jesus was crucified together with two criminals. To identify Jesus they put an inscription on the top of the cross “This is Jesus, the King of the Jews.” A number of prophecies were fulfilled during the crucifixion, and Jesus finally died on the cross. At that very moment the Temple veil was torn in two, from bottom to top and for the first time the holy of holiest was revealed. Jesus, now being dead was taken down from the cross and put in a tomb, a stone was rolled in front of the entrance and the tomb was sealed, and – this is important, they put up a guard to secure the tomb. Why did they do that? Think about that.
Numbers 1 consists of a listing of the heads of the people that left Egypt, the first census.