Daily Bible Reading – 2.22.2021
Daily Bible Reading – 2.22.2021:
Mark 9:42-50 (NIV) – “If anyone causes one of these little ones—those who believe in me—to stumble, it would be better for them if a large millstone were hung around their neck and they were thrown into the sea. If your hand causes you to stumble, cut it off. It is better for you to enter life maimed than with two hands to go into hell, where the fire never goes out. And if your foot causes you to stumble, cut it off. It is better for you to enter life crippled than to have two feet and be thrown into hell. And if your eye causes you to stumble, pluck it out. It is better for you to enter the kingdom of God with one eye than to have two eyes and be thrown into hell, where
“ ‘the worms that eat them do not die,
and the fire is not quenched.’
Everyone will be salted with fire.
“Salt is good, but if it loses its saltiness, how can you make it salty again? Have salt among yourselves, and be at peace with each other.”
Pastor Doug’s Comments:
The “little ones” mentioned speak of young believers in Christ either in age or new to the faith. If anyone would cause such to stumble in their faith then Jesus said it would be better to drown in the sea than to experience the judgment that will come upon them.
Using hyperbole again, Jesus said whatever causes us to sin- our hands, our feet, or our eyes- that it would be better to lose such significant body parts than to lose our souls where the destination is hell. Causing oneself to stumble is as serious as causing a little one to stumble and requires radical measures.
Hell or Gehenna was named from the Valley of Ben Hinnom, a deep ravine to the south of Jerusalem in which Ahaz and Manasseh infamously sacrificed their “little ones.” In later tradition it became a symbol for ultimate punishment. Jesus quoted Isaiah 66:24 expressing the horrific nature of hell, where worms do not die and the fire is not quenched.
The simple sentence, “everyone will be salted with fire” has confounded interpreters. It could mean that everyone who enters hell will suffer its fire, or it may mean that every Christian in this life can expect to undergo the fire of suffering and purification.
Using the image of salt, the goal of being salty as believers is so that we might enjoy peace in our relationships. Such rich relationships are God’s plan for his kingdom.
Questions To Consider/Discuss:
For us to be salty, the whole passage declares that radical surgery of heart may be required so that all manner of sin is removed. Are there drastic measures the Lord needs to do in your life so you can be the flavor-rich disciple you are intended to be?