This week I started wrestling with Mark 8:31-33. Here is what it says: 31 And He began to teach them that the Son of Man must suffer many things and be rejected by the elders and the chief priests and the scribes, and be killed, and after three days rise again. 32 And He was stating the matter plainly. And Peter took Him aside and began to rebuke Him. 33 But turning around and seeing His disciples, He rebuked Peter and said, “Get behind Me, Satan; for you are not setting your mind on God’s interests, but man’s.”
This rejection by the Jewish leadership is not going to be anything new because it had already begun. On more than one occasion the Jewish leaders had tried to find fault with Jesus as you can see if you read through the Gospel Accounts. As we know, the Sanhedrin would eventually reject Jesus for the final time and condemn Him to death. They would accuse Him of blasphemy; turn Him over to Rome, and demanding that He be executed. These religious leaders would lead the people of Israel to demand the death of Jesus on a cross. Even as Jesus was dying and nailed to a cross, these men would mock Him in their anger and hatred. The religious leaders in Israel would send Jesus to His death.
We would have to think that the disciples having already seen that opposition to Jesus that was growing by the day with the various things that were happening to Jesus would not be surprised. So, the revelation that Jesus shares of the Jewish leaders rejecting Him might not have been too shocking to them but what Jesus said next must have left them speechless. This is when Jesus told them that He was going to be killed! He lets them know that He, the Christ, the Messiah, would not only be rejected by Israel, He would also be put to death by them.
Jesus then told them while He must die, that He would also rise again from the dead. Yes, there was suffering, pain and death in His future, but there was also glory! He would pass through death and conquer it as well as conquer Hell and the grave for all those who would believe in Him. Now, the disciples did not understand this truth and so they were all so stunned to hear that Jesus will be killed that they are incapable of hearing Him say that He will beat death and be the eternal victor over it. In fact, they didn’t understand the Lord’s teachings concerning the resurrection until after Jesus had died and risen again. Then as they looked back and thought back about what Jesus had been saying, then they understood what He had said to them.
I wonder about the disciples hearing about Jesus dying and to me I think for them it would indicate that the things Jesus would endure were all part of God’s plan for Him which would be hard for them to understand. We understand I pray that Jesus was rejected and He died for good reasons. His death was God’s will as we can read in places John 3:16; Romans 8:32. His death was the fulfillment of Old Testament prophecy – like can be seen in Psalm 22; 69 and Isaiah 53. His death would satisfy the demands of God’s Law which can be seen in verses like Genesis 2:17; Romans 5:12-21; 2 Corinthians 5:21. We also can see that it was His Own will to die for sinners in verses like John 10:11; Galatians 2:20; and Mark 10:45.
What we have here is Jesus sharing His Mission. I think about this and praise Him that He willingly entered this world, suffered all that He did, died on the cross and rose again from the dead so that I might be saved – that we might all have salvation! Every step He took; every pain He suffered; every lash He endured; every single thing Jesus did, He did for me and you and I thank Him for it.
What are your thoughts concerning what I have shared today?