Tuesday, March 20
You’re Not Done Yet
Day 31—Read Mark 12
As a true people-pleaser, I thrived in school when my teachers affirmed my work. But the best teachers affirmed my direction and my answers, while also letting me know I had further to go. “You’re on the right track, but you’re not done yet.”
Mark 12 includes the Master Teacher, Jesus, correcting a lot of wrong thinking about His identity. The Pharisees try to trap him into political arguments. The Sadducees challenge Him in regards to the resurrection.
Standing apart from these misguided leaders of the Jews is one notable teacher of the Law and potential prize pupil of the Messiah. He asks Jesus a significant question: “What is the greatest commandment?” Jesus answers from Deuteronomy and Leviticus: “Love God with all of your heart, soul, mind and strength, and your neighbor as yourself.”
This teacher/student, in contrast to all of Jesus’ other questioners that day, agrees with Him. Not only that, but he affirms that God desires love above all offerings and sacrifices. The guy really seems to have it going on! He obviously respects the person and teachings of Jesus, and is seeking God diligently. Jesus responds to him like the Master Teacher He is, both affirming the man’s direction and letting him know that there is another all-important step to take. “You are not far from the kingdom of God.” In other words, He is telling “you are on the right track, but you’re not quite there yet. “
What is the missing piece? What is the final step that insures this man’s entrance into God’s kingdom? The decision to wholeheartedly follow Jesus as Savior and Lord. We never get to hear if the man makes that choice and takes that step of faith in Christ.
Today is a good opportunity for us to pray for those people in our lives who may be right on the doorstep of trusting in Christ. Pray that the Holy Spirit does His work in their hearts. Pray that they will take that final, all-important step to turn from their sin and to the only Savior of the world.