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Mark 6:14-29

Talks for Growing Christians

The Martyrdom of John the Baptist

Mark 6:14-29

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Lesson Number 25

Background Notes

Doctrinal Point(s)

  1. Going to church does not make you a Christian.
  2. God's ways are higher than man's ways.

Practical Application

  1. Let's not doubt God's ways.
  2. Don't make rash and foolish decisions in moments of emotion.

Questions

  1. Who did the people think that Jesus was?
  2. Why did Herodias hate John the Baptist?
  3. Why did Herod protect John the Baptist? If Herod respected John, why did he have him killed?
  4. Who gave John the Baptist a decent burial?
  5. If Herod feared and respected John the Baptist, was he considered a believer?
  6. Why did God allow the tragic death of John the Baptist? (According to Jesus, John was the greatest prophet. He had a vital ministry, but it was cut short).

Answers

  1. Herod thought that Jesus was John the Baptist. Some thought that Jesus was Elijah (see Malachi 4:5). Others thought that Jesus was just a prophet.
  2. Because he had spoken out against her immoral relationships.
  3. He feared him, believed that he was a just man, and he gladly heard what he had done. But in order to show favor to Salome, Herod told her to ask what she would. Her mother, Herodias, told her to ask for the head of John the Baptist. In order to save face, Herod granted her request.
  4. John's disciples.
  5. Although Herod knew that John was right, he continued in his sin.
  6. The scene - it was a stupid dance, and a stupid decision by a drunken ruler at a party. But God allowed it, and He had His reasons. See Isaiah 55:8-9.

Discuss/Consider

  1. Some people, like Herod, respect the preacher but fail to enter in to what he has to say. They like the messenger, but reject the message. Be sure that the message gets into your heart. Being a believer means more than listening to a sermon and going to church.
  2. Some people, like Herod, respect the preacher but fail to enter in to what he has to say. They like the messenger, but reject the message. Be sure that the message gets into your heart. Being a believer means more than listening to a sermon and going to church.
  3. Consider some of the hasty decisions that you have made. What were the results?

Challenge

  1. When tragedy strikes, it can make us reassess our values, and it can strengthen our faith. Do you believe this? Is your faith strengthened in times of crises?

Key Verses

  • "Herod feared John, knowing that he was a just and holy man...and the king was exceedingly sorry, but..." (Mark 6:20, 26)

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