Skip to main content

Why did Jesus come? 1. to preach

One of the big challenges for Christians is that we claim to believe in a God we cannot see. It's not all that unusual to believe in things you can't see, but there have to be pretty good reasons. Especially if that unseen 'thing' you're talking about is meant to be personal. How can we know God? How can we know that we’re not believing in someone who isn’t there? When we’re first introduced to Jesus in Mark’s gospel he is preaching to crowds, and healing many. One day a whole town gathers to have their sick healed (1v33). But, very early on Jesus gives priority to his preaching when he says: Let us go on to the next towns, that I may preach there also, for that is why I came...

This is the first of three clear statements (in Mark's gospel) of intent from Jesus about why he came. Why does he give priority to preaching?

Firstly, to reveal himself to us. Jesus knows the problem we face about how it can be possible to know God. And so he comes to show God to us. He comes as a lamp (4v21) to be put on a stand to light the room. Later in the Bible Jesus is described as being the image of the invisible God (Colossians 1v15). If we want to see God we need to see Jesus. As he comes and preaches he shows himself to us.

Secondly, to declare his rule of us. The first thing Jesus says in Mark’s gospel is in 1v15, he says “The time is fulfilled, and the kingdom of God is at hand; repent and believe in the gospel”. All the expectation of the Old Testament has been fulfilled and now Jesus says that God’s kingdom is near. God’s rule is at hand. It’s time to respond to Jesus, turning from our rebellion to believe his good news. As he speaks to us he stakes his claim on us.

Stay listening to God's word.


Popular posts from this blog

"Big eyes full of wonder"

Books. Fiction. Libraries. Second only to churches as are the best gateways in your community to ultimate reality and new possibilities.

Our local library has just re-opened after refurbishment, and I love that our boys have spent several mornings there during the summer holidays, discovering some wonderful new stories.

I realised a few months back that I wasn't reading enough fiction. My work necessitates reading a lot of non-fiction, a mix of historical and contemporary thinking, biblical studies and theology. But fiction is the cinderella. Easily overlooked, and yet able to awaken my imagination and show me the way things are meant to be.

So I've picked up a few more lately - bought and borrowed. Not every book attempted flies, and that's ok. These have been winners though.

Ink. This is Alice Broadway's debut novel. It's young adult fiction and tells the story of Leora who lives in a world where the events of your life are tattooed on your skin. Nothing gets hid…

Uniquely Matthew

Reading gospel accounts in parallel is sometimes used to blur the differences in perspective between the evangelists, seeking to harmonise the texts and find a definitive historical account of what happened. No such thing exists because every account is biased and limited. You simply can't record everything. You have to hold a vantage point. And that's not a problem.

Matthew, Mark and Luke take a very different vantage point to John who was of course an eyewitness himself of the events. Comparing the text of Matthew, Mark and Luke across the death and resurrection of Jesus yields two steps.

Firstly, the common ground. All three accounts tell of...
Simon of Cyrene carrying the cross…. · Jesus labelled as King of the Jews…. · Criminals crucified with Jesus… · Darkness in the daytime… · Jesus' loud final cry… The women who witnessed Jesus death, and Jesus' burial… · The tomb lent to Jesus by Joseph of Arimithea… · The women who went to the tomb on the morning of the…

Songs we're singing in Church

Christians are a singing people, it's part of what we do when we gather.

Our church meets morning an evening on a Sunday - normally using 5 songs in each service. So, over the year that's about 520 song-slots available. The report from the database system we use ( tells us that in the past year we've sung about 150 different songs.

Our current most used song has been sung 11 times in the last year, just under once a month. Our top 10 are used about every 6 weeks. By #30 we're talking about songs used every two months. The tail is long and includes loads of classic hymns from across the centuries, plus other songs from the past 40 years, that we have used around once a term or less.

1. Rejoice - Dustin Kensrue

2. Come Praise & Glorify - Bob Kauflin

3. Man of Sorrows - Hillsong

4. Cornerstone - Hillsong

Rejoice was a song I didn't previously know, along with a couple of others that have quickly become firm favourites for me: Chri…