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Mark 8:27-38

Talks for Growing Christians

A Confession of Faith, and a Call to Discipleship

Mark 8:27-38

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Lesson Number 35

Background Notes

Doctrinal Point(s)

  1. There was a change to the content of Christ's teaching after Peter's confession of faith.
  2. Even a disciple can voice satanic strategy.
  3. Suffering is the way of true servanthood.

Practical Application

  1. Who do you say Jesus is?
  2. You can lose by gaining and gain by losing.

Questions

  1. Why was Caesarea Philippi a fitting place for Peter's confession of faith?
  2. What was the content of Jesus' teaching prior to Peter's confession of faith? How did this change after Peter's confession of faith?
  3. Did Jesus teach about His imminent suffering?
  4. Why is it said that Peter voiced Satanic strategy? Could we be guilty of this?
  5. What is the way of true servanthood?
  6. What does it mean to "take up your cross?"
  7. Who is Jesus?
  8. "You lose by gaining, and gain by losing." Is this double talk?

Answers

  1. It contrasted acknowledging Jesus as Messiah with the refuting of Jesus as the Christ in a city with many idols and shrines to Greek gods.
  2. "The kingdom of heaven was at hand." Jesus began to speak plainly about His suffering, rejection, death and resurrection.
  3. Yes, but it was veiled (see Mark 2:20) prior to Peter's confession of faith. Afterwards, there was open rejection of Jesus, and Peter was ready to be the spokesman for the disciples.
  4. When Peter rebuked the Lord, he in turn was rebuked by the Lord. Yes, we could be guilty. Satan is the god of this world, and it would be easy for us to be taken in by and adopt his strategies, for they are all around us. We must be careful when we give advice to others, that it doesn't reflect worldly attitudes or values.
  5. Suffering is the way of true servanthood.
  6. Taking up your cross is not a personal affliction, but it is death to self. A disciple of the Lord Jesus Christ cannot live a self-centered life.
  7. When Jesus asked what people thought about Him, He was given a variety of answers, all of which denied His deity. Today, many people even think that He is a great and good man. But He is much more. He is the anointed One, the Son of God, and the only way to salvation.
  8. It may sound so, but it isn't. It applies to discipleship - if you save your life by consuming it on selfish interest, it does not count for eternity, and there is a loss of rewards. Conversely, as you serve wholeheartedly as a disciple, you will gain life, both now and in heaven.

Discuss/Consider

  1. Review Psalm 22 and Isaiah 53 to realize again the sufferings of Christ on the cross on our behalf. What is your standard of gain and loss?
  2. What is the value of a soul? Does this move you to action?

Challenge

  1. How would you answer the Lord Jesus when He asks you, "Who do you say that I am?"

Key Verses

  • "Whoever desires to save his life will lose it, but whoever loses his life for My sake and the gospel's will save it. What will it profit a man if he gains the whole world, and loses his own soul?" (Mark 8:34-37)

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