The beginning of the gospel of Jesus Christ, the Son of God (Mark 1:1)
The gospel literally means ‘good news’
Immediately the Spirit drove Him (Sent Him out) into the wilderness. (Mark 1:12)
It is not that Lord Jesus went into the wilderness of His own accord. The Spirit sent Him out into the wilderness. There are times when the Spirit of God will lead you into rough places so that He can shape you and make you – this is often referred to as the place of testing.
And He was there in the wilderness forty days, tempted by Satan, and was with the wild beasts; and the angels ministered to Him. (Mark 1:13)
And He was there in the wilderness forty days, tempted by Satan
The Lord Jesus Christ was tempted but He never fell into temptation. As long as you are in the world you and I will be tempted but the Holy Spirit will never allow us to fall into temptation. Testing is a vital part of the Christian life.
and was with the wild beasts
Wild beasts may refer to literal animals, but some interpreters see an allusion to demons.
and the angels ministered to Him
Past Ministry of Angels to Christ
A. Foretold His Birth…
- Gabriel appeared to Mary – Luke 1:26-38
- An angel appeared to Joseph in a dream – Matthew 1:18-21
B. Announced His Birth…
- First, a single angel to the shepherds in the field – Luke 2:8-12
- Then, a multitude of the heavenly host praising God – Luke 2:13-15
C. Protected Him in Infancy…
- By warning Joseph in a dream to flee to Egypt – Matthew 2:13
- By telling Joseph in a dream to return to Israel – Matthew 2:19-20
D. Ministered to Him after the Temptation…
- After the devil had left Him – Matthew 4:11; Mark 1:13
- May have included encouragement, perhaps even food – e.g.,1Kings 19:5-7
E. Strengthened Him at Gethsemane…
- As He struggled in prayer and agony – Luke 22:41-44
- Perhaps similar to the way in which Daniel was strengthened – Dan 10:18-19
F. Rolled away the stone at the tomb…
- Sitting on the stone after doing so – Matthew 28:2
- Terrifying the guards at the tomb by his appearance – Matthew 28:3-4
G. Appeared following His Resurrection..
- To the women sans Mary Magdalene (who had gone to tell Peter and John upon seeing the stone removed from the tomb)-Matthew 28: 5-7;Mark16:5-7;Luke 24:4-7,22,23; John 20:1-2
- To Mary Magdalene who went into the tomb after Peter and John left- John 20:11-13
H. Attended His Ascension…
- As two men in white apparel – Acts 1:9-10
- Announcing the promise of His return – Acts 1:11
16 And as He waLukeed by the Sea of Galilee, He saw Simon and Andrew his brother casting a net into the sea; for they were fishermen. 17 Then Jesus said to them, “Follow Me, and I will make you become fishers of men.” 18 They immediately left their nets and followed Him. 19 When He had gone a little farther from there, He saw James the son of Zebedee, and John his brother, who also were in the boat mending their nets. 20 And immediately He called them, and they left their father Zebedee in the boat with the hired servants, and went after Him. (Mark 1:16-20)
Cost involved in following the Lord
Price to be paid for following the Lord
James and John, the sons of Zebedee, were from a well to do family. Their father had hired servants and a boat of His own. This means they had a flourishing fishing business. They left everything behind to follow the Lord Jesus. You will always have to give up something to really follow the Lord Jesus Christ. You cannot follow the Lord and still hold on to everything. There is a sacrifice involved in following the Lord completely. This is always the most difficult part. Notice, while they followed Lord Jesus Christ they followed no one else.
Apostle Paul wrote in Philippians 3:7 But what things were gain to me, these I have counted loss for Christ. 8 Yet indeed I also count all things loss for the excellence of the knowledge of Christ Jesus my Lord, for whom I have suffered the loss of all things, and count them as rubbish, that I may gain Christ.
15 When the morning dawned, the angels urged Lot to hurry, saying, “Arise, take your wife and your two daughters who are here, lest you be consumed in the punishment of the city.” 16 And while he lingered, the men took hold of his hand, his wife’s hand, and the hands of his two daughters, the LORD being merciful to him, and they brought him out and set him outside the city. (Genesis 19:15-16)
While the apostles left everything behind without giving it a second thought to follow the Lord Jesus Christ, the Bible says, “Lot lingered” because Lot was tied to his possessions. It is good to have possessions but it is dangerous for possessions to have you. In such a state one can never follow the Lord. Lot had to be literally pulled by the angels.
Matthew 10:39 “He who finds his life will lose it, and he who loses his life for My sake will find it.
24 Then Jesus said to His disciples, “If anyone desires to come after Me, let him deny himself, and take up his cross, and follow Me. 25 “For whoever desires to save his life will lose it, but whoever loses his life for My sake will find it. (Matthew 16:24-25)
There is a sacrifice involved in following the Lord. There is commitment involved in the following the Lord.
16 And as He walked by the Sea of Galilee, He saw Simon and Andrew his brother casting a net into the sea; for they were fishermen. 17 Then Jesus said to them, “Follow Me, and I will make you become fishers of men.” 18 They immediately left their nets and followed Him. 19 When He had gone a little farther from there, He saw James the son of Zebedee, and John his brother, who also were in the boat mending their nets. 20 And immediately He called them, and they left their father Zebedee in the boat with the hired servants, and went after Him. (Mark 1:16-20)
Timing of the Call
Simon and Andrew (brothers) were fishermen. James and John (brothers) They were both called when they were busy at work. They were not sitting idle. They were on the job when they received the call to follow Lord Jesus.
In 1 Kings 19:19 we read, “So he (Elijah) departed from there, and found Elisha the son of Shaphat, who was plowing with twelve yoke of oxen before him, and he was with the twelfth. Then Elijah passed by him and threw his mantle on him.”
Elisha too when he received the call, was working hard – ploughing. It is noticed that many people receive God’s call when they are involved in a secular job. I too received the call of God when I was involved in secular service.Back to Bible Commentary