Mark 16:1-11 (ESV)

When the Sabbath was past, Mary Magdalene, Mary the mother of James, and Salome bought spices, so that they might go and anoint him. And very early on the first day of the week, when the sun had risen, they went to the tomb. And they were saying to one another, “Who will roll away the stone for us from the entrance of the tomb?” And looking up, they saw that the stone had been rolled back — it was very large. And entering the tomb, they saw a young man sitting on the right side, dressed in a white robe, and they were alarmed. And he said to them, “Do not be alarmed. You seek Jesus of Nazareth, who was crucified. He has risen; he is not here. See the place where they laid him.” But go, tell his disciples and Peter that he is going before you to Galilee. There you will see him, just as he told you. And they went out and fled from the tomb, for trembling and astonishment had seized them, and they said nothing to anyone, for they were afraid. Now when he rose early on the first day of the week, he appeared first to Mary Magdalene, from whom he had cast out seven demons. She went and told those who had been with him, as they mourned and wept. But when they heard that he was alive and had been seen by her, they would not believe it.

Why does Jesus’ resurrection matter today? (I Cor 15)

-Preaching would be useless

-Faith would be futile

-We would forever remain broken, slaves of sin

-Those already dead perished with no hope

-We are the most pitiful people in the world, if He is not alive

But Christ is alive!

-He is the first fruits of the resurrection

-In Him, we are alive

-In Him, we will be resurrected

-In Him, our sin and mortality will be vanquished

-In Him, we will become like Him…deathless

-In Him, He will raise our actual bodies from death, but we will be changed, fitted with an indestructible, glorified body, just like His

We celebrate today as ‘Palm Sunday’…He enters Jerusalem…headed for the Cross The Biblical Vision of Christianity has to include the Cross. Our text is not a complete recounting of Christ’s Crucifixion, yet enough for us today. We read the story knowing the end, but let us pause today and do our best to fully understand all of the theology and we find at the Cross.

Let us pause and fully discover what we can about God and how HE thinks of us. Let us pause and consider what it cost & what was bought with that cost. It bought MY salvation, Your Salvation…eternal communion with the creator of all. Today when we see what it cost, might it inspire us to live worthy of that cost.

In this passage there is no words from Jesus to His disciples…Only one short [famous] quote and a loud cry [no words given it here] from Jesus’ lips in this whole passage. And yet for His people there is much said and much to contemplate..


Mark Pt. 40 [15:21-47] NASB

21 They pressed into service a passer-by coming from the country, Simon of Cyrene (the father of Alexander and Rufus), to bear His cross.

  • Step #1 in being crucified is to drag the instrument of your death out of the city
  • They leave The Praetorium [Roman Fortress / Stronghold]
  • Going thru the city… ‘Via Dolorosa’ = Way of Pain / Path of Suffering
  • This encounter takes place near the gate [entering the city from the country]
  • This particular city gate was and is known as the Sheep Gate [Sacrificial Lamb]
  • The encounter is a prophetic enactment of what EVERY follower of Christ does
  • Because Christ’s Crucifixion cost SO much all HIS share in the burden
  • When Christ makes you His you share in what He is all about: Saving Souls!

22 Then they brought Him to the place Golgotha, which is translated, Place of a Skull. 23 They tried to give Him wine mixed with myrrh; but He did not take it. 24 And they crucified Him, and divided up His garments among themselves, casting lots for them to decide what each man should take. Psalm 22:18

  • The place of a skull was the busiest intersection on the exterior of the city
  • It cost all the possible pain; Christ knew He could not cut a single corner
  • It cost all the possible humiliation; gambling for His stuff [memorabilia]
  • The vilest people [Like YOU & ME] take the stuff of the most Holy

25 It was the third hour [9am] when they crucified Him. 26 The inscription of the charge against Him read, “THE KING OF THE JEWS.” 27 They crucified two robbers with Him, one on His right and one on His left. 28 [And the Scripture was fulfilled which says, “And He was numbered with transgressors.”] Isaiah 53:12d

  • Timeline of last 12 hours: They left the city before 9pm [gates closed]
  • ‘They crucified Him’ What does that entail?
  • The mocking sign and the ‘Bad Company’
  • Every bit of status & reputation He had was GONE
  • That is just how He came, the relate ability of Christ is amazing

29 Those passing by were hurling abuse at Him, wagging their heads, and saying, “Ha! You who are going to destroy the temple and rebuild it in three days, 30 save Yourself, and come down from the cross!”

  • At the crossroads coming into the city so everyone would know His humiliation
  • Just five short days ago He was being treated like a King…
  • ‘If you are god’… They expected God to be selfish, they did not know God!
  • The people He is dying for don’t appreciate it…He could have said: I quit!
  • Indeed the cost was enormous!

31 In the same way the chief priests also, along with the scribes, were mocking Him among themselves and saying, “He saved others; He cannot save Himself. 32 Let this Christ, the King of Israel, now come down from the cross, so that we may see and believe!” Those who were crucified with Him were also insulting Him.

  • The chief priests showed up to see the effect of their handiwork
  • They were joining in and leading the abuse
  • These are the leaders of the people that God had set apart as His Own
  • ‘If you do ______ we will believe’…Classic statement of unbelief
  • Even the guys getting killed along with Him got in on the act

33 When the sixth hour [noon] came, darkness fell over the whole land until the ninth hour. 34 At the ninth hour [3pm] Jesus cried out with a loud voice, “Eloi, Eloi, lama sabachthani?” which is translated, “My God, My God, why have You forsaken Me?”

  • 9am – 3pm: Six Hours On The Cross!
  • We heard verse 18 of Psalm 22 acted out by the Roman soldiers
  • We hear from Christ’s mouth verse 1 of that same Psalm [underrated Psalm]
  • HE quotes Scripture that was 1st seen as David [son of man] crying out to God
  • The ultimate cost was being separated from God by your sin, my sin, OUR SIN

35 When some of the bystanders heard it, they began saying, “Behold, He is calling for Elijah.” 36 Someone ran and filled a sponge with sour wine, put it on a reed, and gave Him a drink, saying, “Let us see whether Elijah will come to take Him down.”

  • Who is a bystander at such a thing [curious, quasi-jewish, travelers]
  • They think he is saying Elijah! Rather than Eoi… [lack of scripture knowledge]
  • They want to keep Him alive so Elijah will come take Him down [ignorance]

37 And Jesus uttered a loud cry, and breathed His last.

  • Mark & Matthew don’t record what Jesus says when He cries out
  • John’s Gospel quotes Him as saying: ‘It is finished!’
  • To pay for all of mankind’s sin, past, present & future took the perfect sacrifice

38 And the veil of the temple was torn in two from top to bottom. 39 When the centurion, who was standing right in front of Him, saw the way He breathed His last, he said, “Truly this man was the Son of God!”

  • The Spiritual Gravity was so massive, miracles happened
  • A sign of outreach from God
  • A sign of recognition from Mankind
  • Dead saints were resurrected [Matthew 27]

40 There were also some women looking on from a distance, among whom were Mary Magdalene, and Mary the mother of James the Less and Joses, and Salome. 41 When He was in Galilee, they used to follow Him and minister to Him; and there were many other women who came up with Him to Jerusalem.

  • This is a unique statement in literature of the time and for centuries to come
  • The naming of a woman or women not attached to a man [lots of Marys]
  • The male disciples are nowhere to be found…
  • Christ was the 1st feminist!

42 When evening had already come, because it was the preparation day, that is, the day before the Sabbath, 43 Joseph of Arimathea came, a prominent member of the Council, who himself was waiting for the kingdom of God; and he gathered up courage and went in before Pilate, and asked for the body of Jesus.

  • Preparation Day for the Sabbath [Sabbath during Passover]
  • Joseph, similar to Nicodemus: part of the Religious Elite yet believing in Christ
  • Scattered through a totally corrupt Jewish nation, there were remnants of faith
  • Did Joseph believe Jesus would rise from the dead? Will he be in heaven?

44 Pilate wondered if He was dead by this time, and summoning the centurion, he questioned him as to whether He was already dead. 45 And ascertaining this from the centurion, he granted the body to Joseph. 46 Joseph bought a linen cloth, took Him down, wrapped Him in the linen cloth and laid Him in a tomb which had been hewn out in the rock; and he rolled a stone against the entrance of the tomb.

  • How would the centurion know if Jesus was dead or not?
  • Joseph took Jesus down from the cross
  • Being well off He owned a tomb that was to be his resting place
  • They used gravity as the force to keep the stone in place

47 Mary Magdalene and Mary the mother of Joses were looking on to see where He was laid.

  • It seems as though the two Marys were watching Joseph, saw what he did
  • They had plans…we will see next week
  • We know how the story ends…they did not


Physical pain beyond our comprehension

Humiliation of unfathomable intensity

Complete and total Abandonment

Loss of all reputation and standing


God’s Love for humanity

God’s Willingness to reach out to His Children

God’s Accessibility to EVERYONE

God Patience with You to grow as His Child

What is Your response to what God did?

If You have Biblically Surrendered Your Life to Christ

~ Live Everyday in light of the cost

~ Live with Unending Gratitude because of the cost

~ Live in Biblical Obedience because of the cost

~ Live with Kingdom Focus because of the cost

If You Have Not Biblically Surrendered Your Life to Christ

~ Ask God to reveal Himself to You

~ Become a student of Scripture

~ Give your life to God as best as you can right now

Mark 14:66 – 15:20 (ESV)

Today we see the suffering of Jesus in three ways, and each scene demonstrates Gods love for us. What he would endure for you and me. 

1 – he suffers betrayal by his closest friends and followers
2 – he suffers injustice and corruption from the earthly leaders and government
3 – he suffers physical mockery, pain and humiliation

Everything we will read today shows the demonstration of his love.
9 This is how God showed his love among us: He sent his one and only Son into the world that we might live through him. 1 john 4:9

Mark 14
66 And as Peter was below in the courtyard, one of the servant girls of the high priest came, 67 and seeing Peter warming himself, she looked at him and said, “You also were with the Nazarene, Jesus.” 68 But he denied it, saying, “I neither know nor understand what you mean.” And he went out into the gateway and the rooster crowed. 

•If he’s hitched to him, Peter could be looking at the same fate. 

And after a little while the bystanders again said to Peter, “Certainly you are one of them, for you are a Galilean.” 71 But he began to invoke a curse on himself and to swear, “I do not know this man of whom you speak.” 

•Jesus came to suffer the pain of rejection. From his own creation, from the people of Israel, and even from his own disciples and followers, who said they would be with him
•Move to Act 2. the longest section of our text. Jesus is before Pilate.

15 And as soon as it was morning, the chief priests held a consultation with the elders and scribes and the whole council. And they bound Jesus and led him away and delivered him over to Pilate. 2 And Pilate asked him, “Are you the King of the Jews?” And he answered him, “You have said so.” 3 And the chief priests accused him of many things. 4 And Pilate again asked him, “Have you no answer to make? See how many charges they bring against you.” 5 But Jesus made no further answer, so that Pilate was amazed.

•Jesus had every retort in the world. He could justify himself in every single way. We cannot justify ourselves, and yet we keep trying to. 

6 Now at the feast he used to release for them one prisoner for whom they asked. 7 And among the rebels in prison, who had committed murder in the insurrection, there was a man called Barabbas. 8 And the crowd came up and began to ask Pilate to do as he usually did for them. 9 And he answered them, saying, “Do you want me to release for you the King of the Jews?” 10 For he perceived that it was out of envy that the chief priests had delivered him up. 11 But the chief priests stirred up the crowd to have him release for them Barabbas instead.

•The symbolism here deserves a sermon of its own. A sinful murder is given grace on the day of Passover. God’s judgement passes over this man displaying God’s justice in the face of injustice. 

12 And Pilate again said to them, “Then what shall I do with the man you call the King of the Jews?” 13 And they cried out again, “Crucify him.” 14 And Pilate said to them, “Why? What evil has he done?” But they shouted all the more, “Crucify him.” 15 So Pilate, wishing to satisfy the crowd, released for them Barabbas, and having scourged Jesus, he delivered him to be crucified.

•Jesus came to suffer injustice. The complacency and corruption of the human authorities is manifested in the murder of a man who lived a perfect life, unlike anyone who had ever lived before. 
•So we move to our last section, Act 3, where after being sentenced to death Jesus is beaten and tortured. 

16 And the soldiers led him away inside the palace (that is, the governor’s headquarters), and they called together the whole battalion. 17 And they clothed him in a purple cloak, and twisting together a crown of thorns, they put it on him. 

•In our last Act Jesus took the physical punishment for our sins. He suffers humiliation on our behalf.


What we read this morning describes the physical punishments that we should receive for our sins. But this is the physical debt we are owed for our sins and rebellion. 

God lowered himself, to death on a cross. Philippians 2:6

“who, though he was in the form of God, did not count equality with God a thing to be grasped, 7 but emptied himself, by taking the form of a servant, being born in the likeness of men. 8 And being found in human form, he humbled himself by becoming obedient to the point of death, even death on a cross.”

Even though he did nothing wrong, he came to bear our wrongs.

Application Questions I hope you can answer after this: If you are interested in discussing the answers to these questions, maybe join a life group.

Why did Jesus suffer? How is this fair?
Why did Peter, one of his most intimate followers, completely reject him three times?
How do we know that God was in control the whole time?
Did your life need to be redeemed like this? To this extreme?

He first loved us. Because of our flesh we could not love him first, but I encourage you this morning to look at what he endured for you, and for me. That is love, reciprocate it. 

Mark 14:53-65 (ESV)

And they led Jesus to the high priest. And all the chief priests and the elders and the scribes came together. And Peter had followed him at a distance, right into the courtyard of the high priest. And he was sitting with the guards and warming himself at the fire.  Now the chief priests and the whole council were seeking testimony against Jesus to put him to death, but they found none. For many bore false witness against him, but their testimony did not agree.  And some stood up and bore false witness against him, saying, “We heard him say, ‘I will destroy this temple that is made with hands, and in three days I will build another, not made with hands.'” Yet even about this their testimony did not agree.  And the high priest stood up in the midst and asked Jesus, “Have you no answer to make? What is it that these men testify against you?” But he remained silent and made no answer. Again the high priest asked him, “Are you the Christ, the Son of the Blessed?”  And Jesus said, “I am, and you will see the Son of Man seated at the right hand of Power, and coming with the clouds of heaven.”  And the high priest tore his garments and said, “What further witnesses do we need? You have heard his blasphemy. What is your decision?” And they all condemned him as deserving death. And some began to spit on him and to cover his face and to strike him, saying to him, “Prophesy!” And the guards received him with blows.

Summary Points:

– He was/is the spotless Lamb of God, our Passover sacrifice.

– Salvation is of the Lord. He is the Way, the only Way of redemption.

– He laid down His life. He was no victim.

– He is deity. Son of God. God the Son.

Mark 14:27-52 ESV

We Need God’s Spirit to Follow Christ

Easter is coming…4 weeks from today. What are you doing to prepare? How are you preparing your soul to celebrate? Challenge: From now until Easter read all four gospels from Palm Sunday their end. Various Gospels focus more on certain parts than others, some include this, some include that. Together they give us the BIG PICTURE! We have plenty to learn from Mark’s Gospel which He has ordained for THIS Body at THIS time.

TODAY’S PASSSAGE: We are going to see how we think we can follow Christ with our talent, smarts & will. We are wrong! [Sin Nature / Pride / Self-sufficiency] We need the work of God from start to finish to be His people. He begins the process with His birth, life, death, & resurrection. And He continues the process by placing His Spirit within us. Without the indwelling Holy we cannot & will not follow Jesus the Christ: NO WAY! Without HIS calling, redeeming, & sanctifying us we could go so far as to betray HIM! Our insufficiency VS HIS complete sufficiency Our flesh = zero His Spirit = ALL. THIS Revelation is the foundation of Biblical Salvation in Christ [Spirit Revealed]

We are the disciples, place yourself into the story…Learn by being honest about your need for Christ to provide EVERYTHING!

IT IS THURSDAY NIGHT: A lot has happened in the past day! It began with preparation: preparation for the enactment of Israel’s Deliverance known as the Passover Seder: Foot washing / Judas is outed & leaves. Jesus demonstrates the fulfillment of the Passover with announcement of the New Covenant, Lot’s of crucial teaching on the Holy Spirit, The Vine & Branches teaching as they are headed towards the Mount of Olives.

27 And Jesus said to them, “You will all fall away, for it is written, ‘I will strike the shepherd, and the sheep will be scattered.’ 28 But after I am raised up, I will go before you to Galilee.” 29 Peter said to him, “Even though they all fall away, I will not.” 30 And Jesus said to him, “Truly, I tell you, this very night, before the rooster crows twice, you will deny Me three times.” 31 But he said emphatically, “If I must die with You, I will not deny You.” And they all said the same.

  • Jesus quotes Zechariah 13:7 to demonstrate His Sovereignty over events

Sword [Justice], awake against My shepherd. And against a hero [Messiah] — My fellow, [Intimate One] An affirmation of Jehovah of Hosts. Smite the shepherd, and scattered is the flock, And I have put back My hand [of protection] on the little ones. ~ Zechariah 13:7 YLT [Italics mine]

  • You sheep / disciples, are going to be in disarray when I am struck [fall away]
  • Trust in My divinity, ‘cuz after My Resurrection, I will go before you [protect you]
  • And Peter is all indignant! NOT ME! They [him pointing] might… but NOT ME!
  • Jesus is clear: ‘truly I tell you’…by the coming morning you will deny Me 3 times
  • Peter responds by saying He will die before he denies Jesus
  • Peter has an unrealistic estimation of his power to obey God
  • He didn’t have God’s Spirit indwelling him yet, enabling him to obey [all saints]
  • They all over estimated their ability to follow Christ in hard circumstances

32 And they went to a place called Gethsemane. And He said to His disciples, “Sit here while I pray.” 33 And He took with Him Peter and James and John, and began to be greatly distressed and troubled. 34 And He said to them, “My soul is very sorrowful, even to death. Remain here and watch.” 35 And going a little farther, He fell on the ground and prayed that, if it were possible, the hour might pass from Him. 36 And He said, “Abba, Father, all things are possible for You. Remove this cup from Me. Yet not what I will, but what You will.”

  • It stands to reason this was a familiar place to Jesus and His disciples
  • Upper room to Garden ½ a Mile / Garden to Bethany 1 ¾ Miles
  • During this week they had been staying in Bethany [Lazarus’ house]
  • He tells the nine to stay put and takes the three off to one side
  • My soul is so troubled I could DIE! STAY HERE AND KEEP WATCH
  • He goes a bit farther and collapses in prayer: Can You not have me do this?
  • But if that is not what you want, I will do what you want! [complete submission]
  • Jesus is agreeing to do all of the ‘dirty’ work to win your salvation

37 And He came and found them sleeping, and He said to Peter, “Simon, are you asleep? Could you not watch one hour? 38 Watch and pray that you may not enter into temptation. The spirit indeed is willing, but the flesh is weak.” 39 And again He went away and prayed, saying the same words. 40 And again He came and found them sleeping, for their eyes were very heavy, and they did not know what to answer Him. 41 And He came the third time and said to them, “Are you still sleeping and taking your rest?”

  • After praying out this affirmation of God’s will he returns to find them asleep
  • He calls him ‘Simon’ not ‘The Rock’
  • You couldn’t stay awake ONE hour? Become aware of your vulnerability…
  • Be on guard and ask for God’s help to keep from being drawn into sin….
  • God wills that we not enter into temptation, but in our flesh, we have no shot
  • What in the world is Jesus going to do about this situation? [Give us His Spirit]
  • This same things happens two more times! The last time He is exasperated!

Three times they fail…is this the beginning of a pattern???

It is enough; the hour has come. The Son of Man is betrayed into the hands of sinners. 42 Rise, let us be going; see, My betrayer is at hand.” 43 And immediately, while He was still speaking, Judas came, one of the twelve, and with him a crowd with swords and clubs, from the chief priests and the scribes and the elders. 44 Now the betrayer had given them a sign, saying, “The one I will kiss is the man. Seize Him and lead Him away under guard.”

  • What was enough? The demonstration of the disciples inability to obey God?
  • More likely He had now prayerfully prepared for what was about to begin…
  • He is giving the disciples a run down of what was going to happen and BAM!
  • Judas arrives… how does he know Jesus would be there?
  • He has a small army in tow and a pre-set sign so He can mark they guy & split

45 And when he [Judas] came, he went up to Him at once and said, “Rabbi!” And he kissed Him. 46 And they laid hands on Him [Jesus] and seized Him. 47 But one of those who stood by drew his sword and struck the servant of the high priest and cut off his ear. 48 And Jesus said to them, “Have you come out as against a robber, with swords and clubs to capture me? 49 Day after day I was with you in the temple teaching, and you did not seize Me. But let the Scriptures be fulfilled.”

  • Betrayed with a kiss…
  • Without God’s Spirit we are capable of ‘disguised betrayal’
  • Peter [we know from John 18:10] resorts to violence [swinging at head hits ear]
  • Without God’s Spirit we try to do it ourselves instead of trusting God

50 And they all left Him and fled 51 And a young man [who] followed Him, with nothing but a linen cloth about his body. And they seized him, 52 but he left the linen cloth and ran away naked.

  • Just as the Scripture Jesus quoted had predicted…They all fled!
  • They left Him, deserted Him in fear for their lives!
  • Fear makes you do desperate things… like fleeing naked!
  • Mark’s flesh was weak… but in 53 days it would begin to start to be ‘Willing’


We overrate our own ability to trust and follow Jesus Christ.

We need GOD to animate our flesh by placing HIS Spirit in us. This is Biblical Salvation / Election. This enables us to have a relationship with God. [CHANGE]

Christ invites His disciples to understand the sacrifice it took to save people from the consequences of sin / rebellion. He calls us to struggle with Him for souls.

Jesus prepared for doing God’s will with prayer, we do well to follow His example

God saw fit to be betrayed by someone He had shown grace to… [YOU & ME]

God allowed one of His inner circle to conspire with the religious establishment.

Yet He demonstrated total control of events to fulfill prophecy and give us FAITH!

Encouragement to Disciples:

You can go from being a scared, naked kid to being used by the Holy Spirit to write Scripture! Surrender your life to Christ & HE will place His Spirit in you [CHANGE]


To avoid ‘spiritual blindspots’, do you intentionally let people speak into your walk with Christ? If not, how could you start to?

So you can care about people like Jesus, do you come face to face with the consequences of sin in people’s lives? If not, might you consider how that could happen?

Do you believe all the prophetic stuff in the Bible has come true, is coming true and will come true? If not, what are you going to do about that?

Do you recognize that without Christ’s saving power, you are capable of betrayal and rebellion of great magnitude? What is a practice that grows that kind of faith?