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Hating and Loving Christ (Part C)

Cross Reference Radio / Pastor Rick Gaston
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November 4, 2021 6:00 am

Hating and Loving Christ (Part C)

Cross Reference Radio / Pastor Rick Gaston

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November 4, 2021 6:00 am

Pastor Rick teaches from the Gospel of Mark (Mark 14:1-11)

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He doesn't set doctrine for us, not positive doctrine. Some of the disciples appear to have sided with him, supposing that he knew what he was talking about. And so that's why when Mark and Matthew tell the story, they do not isolate it to Judas. John does.

He drills it down. Look, Judas was the one that started this. Some of the others kind of said, yeah, that's a good point. Church troublemakers can be very effective leading people who did not come to follow them. This is Cross-Reference Radio with our pastor and teacher Rick Gaston. Rick is the pastor of Calvary Chapel Mechanicsville. Pastor Rick is currently teaching through the Gospel of Mark. Please stay with us after today's message to hear more information about Cross-Reference Radio, specifically how you can get a free copy of this teaching.

And now here's Pastor Rick with the conclusion of his message called Hating and Loving Christ in Mark Chapter 14. This is costly oil. Nard, a plant that grows, I'm told, in India and Nepal up in that way. And of course you make an essential oil. Motor oil is essential too, I should add.

I know. So and they used it as an ointment and perfume for special occasions because it was so, you know, costly. Therefore, probably had been in the family a long time and you just break it out every now and then. Evidently, not often, maybe not at all because she breaks the flask. She probably could not get the seal off and she's fine. And then she uses it unsparingly on the Lord, which is an emblem of her devotion and love.

She doesn't care about the cost of the oil. To her, it is more valuable to show him love than to keep this up on the shelf. Then she broke the flask and poured it on his head.

Now John 12 says it's his feet. Well, she had enough to do both. And that is what she did.

Her love for him is going to memorialize this event. Not that she spent expensive oil, if Judas is telling the story, yes, but Christ is of course developing the story and the apostles are telling it. And what they're saying is, there's this outpouring of love on the Lord and he took issue with anybody criticizing her for this apparently extravagant devotion. No other love is to be greater than the love we have for Christ. That's not always easy because we can't see Christ as we can see some of each other.

Our children, for example. 1 Peter. Now remember Peter, writing to Christians who were persecuted in 1 Peter, and he writes to them and he says, you know, you didn't see Christ.

I did. But you love him just as much as me. And he was taken by this. And so he writes, he says, whom having not seen you love, though you do not see him yet believing, you rejoice with joy inexpressible and full of glory.

It struck him. Here's Peter in the assembly singing worship songs with the people and he's saying, their intensity of love for Christ is matching my intensity and I walked with him. That is the work of the Holy Spirit. This unfair life that we face raises its medusa ahead with questions and challenges about God and our faith and our love for him.

God knows that. And God says this, you know, when you go through struggles and you don't understand and you're actually offended with God, why doesn't he do something? Jesus said this, blessed is he who is not offended because of me. The one that can serve me without explanation is the one that's going to be blessed.

Once they find out who I am, they'll trust that much first. But if they make it a condition of serving me, if they say, if Christ you are offending me, I can't serve you anymore, then you become Judas. It is profound. Beatitude is it not?

Blessed is he who is not offended because of me. Her Lord's enemies were out to kill him. I'm not so sure she knew it.

He knew it. He's the one that says, she's doing this for my burial. She doesn't say that. She's just pouring love out on him.

She may have. She is saying, this is all I can do for him anyway. I can just show up in love on him. To others it may be meaningless. We just saw our young brother just play the song for the Lord. That's the same spirit.

This is what I can do. These last acts of love and loyalty by various believers are in contrast to these acts of violence that are directed towards him. And it must have been bittersweet for Christ to see her loving on him but knowing in a few days her heart was going to be smashed.

Isaiah says he is despised and rejected by men, a man of sorrows acquainted with grief. So the next time you're grieving how God's handling something, you understand he knew. He understood that too. He saw all the beggars, the lepers.

They were people he could not reach. He knew there were people that he would heal and they still wouldn't believe him. He knew that Judas would be used by him to do miracles, to hear his preaching and still rebel against him.

How do you not have a broken heart over something like that? Verse 4, but there were some who were indignant among themselves and said, why was this fragrant oil wasted? John names him. John said this was Judas. John chapter 12 verse 6, this he said, not that he cared for the poor but because he was a thief and had the money box and he used, he used to take what was put in it. He was an embezzler, a thief.

And so when this protest is, this money, why is this oil being wasted? How do you consider it wasted if it's poured on Christ? Who asked you Judas? He doesn't set doctrine for us, not positive doctrine. Some of the disciples appear to have sided with him supposing that he knew what he was talking about. And so that's why when Mark and Matthew tell the story, they do not isolate it to Judas. John does.

He drills it down. Look, Judas was the one that started this. Some of the others kind of said, yeah, that's a good point. Church troublemakers can be very effective leading people who did not come to follow them. You could say, you know, Peter could have said if John joined him with Judas just for example, Peter could have said, what are you doing? We didn't come here to listen to Judas. We came here to listen to Christ. And thus leading people out of a church that God led them into happens too frequently. Seeds of discord amongst brethren in which the Proverbs in chapter 6 make it very clear, God hates sowing seeds of discord amongst the brethren. If you know someone that's going to a church and they love their church and they're getting fed the Word of God, don't try to get them to come out of their church.

Encourage them. Again, by this time he had been a long time embezzler. So he reasons, we could have sold all of this oil for a big profit. I would have had more to embezzle.

There would have been a larger kitty for me to take from. A pot, that is, cash. So he was being slighted and it was just starting. Verse 5, he continues, for it might have been sold for more than 300 denarii and given to the poor and they criticized her sharply. She was criticized for loving on the Lord, for spending her money, her way, on her Lord. 2 Corinthians 9, so let each one of you, pardon me, so let each one give as he prospers in his heart, not grudgingly or of necessity, for God loves a cheerful giver. She's not complaining. She's going to anoint his head, and that doesn't mean pour a drop on.

She's going to pour it on, and then his feet. Christian men who get to be advisors to the church, there's lessons they have to learn. Not all of the lessons of the business world, of business acumen and God's stewardship, they don't always match. For the church, it's not always about profit margins, the dollars. A church can be solvent and have profit secondary. We have enough to live off of, to do what we have to do. In a business world, that wouldn't fly. You've got to be at those margins, and that's understandable. I'm not saying one is wrong and the other is right.

I'm saying they're not an automatic fit. She noticed that they were ganging up on her, and so did Christ, verse 6. But Jesus said, let her alone. Why do you trouble her?

She has done a good work for me. I don't think that was his tone. I think he got a little sharp with them. I think he knew he was, I think he was intentionally provoking Judas because he knew that he was going to be traded on the feast, at the feast, and not after. And this was the moment.

Now the bystanders could hear them murmuring in their criticisms, but they also heard him stick up for her, just like you do when you're confused sometimes and the Holy Spirit comes along and encourages you and says, I'm with you. You're right on this. But, you know, that's not enough. It's not enough to be right, as much fun as it is.

There's more to it. You've got to learn how to use being right. Those who have discernment when they're right and others do not have it, it's very painful because no one's listening to you. In fact, they could be attacking you. Your own brothers and sisters in the faith. You're overboard with that.

Oh, that's not going to happen, and then it happens, and then nobody wants to come. You were right. Sometimes they dislike you even more for being right. Anyway, she has done a good work for me, he says. There are works by Christians that are outstanding, quite amazing, but there are also works that are not so good. So the seven churches in Revelation, to each one Christ brings up works. And it's unfortunate that the five churches who were rebuked, he addressed, he said, you know, you're doing these works. Well, to Laodicea, he said your doing these works, but to the others, he said you're doing these works, but that's not enough.

You have bad doctrine, or you have no love, or you have a name that you're alive, or you are supporting those who hate me. And so he dealt with this, and we have to listen, okay, she's done a good work. I want to do a good work, and I don't want any rebuke attached to it. I want to just hear him say, well done, not well done, but, as he did to the seven churches. And so there is a great lesson here, do not take lightly, she's done a good work for me. In their face he goes with this, verse 7, for you have the poor with you always and whatever you wish, you may do them good, but me you do not always have.

There's always somebody trying to tell you how to spend your stuff, is there not? There are plenty opportunities to minister to the poor. In fact, he could have told Judas, you know, which he was telling him, you have to wait for me, you can go do that at any time. If somebody in the church is struggling, it's not a burden of the church, what about you?

You help that person out. The New Testament gives strict guidelines on this one, Paul, because people were abusing the church. It is not the primary burden of the church to address social services. It is the primary burden of the church to preach the word to a society who will address social services. This is the history of Western civilization. Hospitals, asylums, these things came out from the hearts of Christians, from their faith in Christ. Slavery was put down because of Christian people and their influence on society.

So it does matter, and I'm a firm believer. I have a cash register in my office, believe it or not, and it's not a prosperity thing. Years ago, we were going to, you know, have sort of a restaurant in the cafe, and so we began doing that. Let me just grab the cash here, because we'd have to charge for the food, discounted, but nonetheless it would be there. God put the kibosh on that. He just swooped down after I bought the $100 cash register.

It's still in the box, never been taken out. He just swooped down and said, no. And what he said to me was, be a church. Just be a church. That's all I need from you, be a church.

Not an entertainment center, not this, not that. Just preach the word. And, you know, there's a long list of Christians who don't care for that. They have an agenda, and they think the church should be part of that process. The church owes you truth and love, a place to assemble and receive the word, and everything after that is bonus. And this is why so many churches, I think, become entangled in things they should not. And the next thing you know, they're social centers. The word is not preached anymore. I'm not saying this happens all the time, but it happens a lot of the times.

The poor you have with you always. Don't try to get the church to do your work, you go do it. And so that's what he is saying. Listen, this money could have been taken as, you know, our little entity here, and we could have done.

And he says, you go do this. A lot of people are insulted by this because they think it's insensitive and it's callous. It's not. It's quite the other way around. If you can keep the church pure, then the people that are in that assembly, they will do good works. And this has been the case in history. It just doesn't last long before the church, those good churches are eventually infiltrated. Either the pastor dies and another guy comes in and he's not that, all that, and you've got problems. Well, I've spent enough time on that. And church history, of course, is loaded with the behavior of Christians who were influenced by good preaching from the Word that went out into the world and did great things.

How many people left that church in Metropolitan Tabernacle in London, Charles Spurgeon's church, and they went out into the world and did so many things because of good preaching. Anyway, verse 8, she has done what she could. She has come beforehand to anoint my body for burial.

Nobody can meet every need, but we can meet the ones that God gives us. You may have a need, you know, it's this thing with humans, right? I'm now a vegetarian, you've got to be one. We are prone to do things like that. I'm now starting to do exercises, you've got to start doing exercise.

I'm getting in shape, you, I mean on and on and on. We've got to watch that kind of stuff. Anyway, he says she has done what she could, what she could, what she could. She's not doing what Peter could. And Peter is not being called to do what she could.

He doesn't say, Peter, where's your flask? As a church, we support missions that do things that we can't do. Philippians chapter 2, verse 16, Paul says holding fast the word of life to Titus, he says holding fast the faithful word as he has been taught that he may be able by sound teaching both to exhort and convict those who contradict. Take that away from the church and you just have something else.

We're no longer the called out ones. It says here in verse 8, she has come beforehand to anoint my body for burial. To her, again, the value was in loving Christ, not in cashing in on her family heirloom of Spikenard. His apostles, they blocked out the thought of death, his death, and his resurrection. That was almost anathema with those guys. But he kept putting it in front of them.

They were fairly warned. None of them should have been shocked by his death on paper. But when it comes to human emotion, what would you think? I mean just in sports, if you had a hero that every time he got up to bat in baseball he hit a home run, the one time he gets a triple you'd be pretty upset.

Where's the home run? Well with Christ here, someone who just healed people, there's nobody, it was untouchable until he said he could be touched. And they weren't ready for that. Verse 9, surely I say to you. Now he's putting them in their place and I think his tones were pretty firm. I don't think this is that soft gentle tone. I think he's a little upset that they attacked this lass for showing love.

Because greed was the motive. Verse 9, surely I say to you wherever this gospel is preached in the whole world, what this woman has done will also be told as a memorial to her. He could have said that about a lot of things. He could have said that about Peter walking on the water. But he says it about this one.

As I am doing now and other pastors when they come to this and when you share this word, we're fulfilling this prophecy, this promise, and we're doing it usually without protest. But there's more. So he put Judas in his place. He's the leader of this little mini rebellion. Verse 10, then Judas Iscariot, one of the twelve, went to the chief priest to betray him to them. You see the connection? He starts out, they want to kill him. Mark puts this story in about when Judas got put in his place and now he says now Judas is the straw that broke the camel's back. It's a connection. Even though it happened days earlier from where we are with the narrative of the high priest, he ties it in for us.

He says there's where it was always there. He was embezzling. He pretended to be part of the congregation but he was not. And now he says this is the moment where he finally decides, okay, he marched into Jerusalem on that Palm Sunday.

He didn't take over the city. Now he's wasting profit. This guy is just not for me. And this is how he is thinking. His conscience seared with a hot iron. Insulted for being corrected. Now you Christian adults who may from time to time have to be corrected. Maybe it's the spouse. Maybe it's a pastor. Maybe it's the preaching.

Maybe it's a friend. How about you children of all ages? When you're corrected, when you know you're wrong and you are corrected, forget about if it's gentle or harsh, just by the facts. What is your response to that? Well, here's what the Proverbs says. The Proverbs was written for people who can't figure it out on their own.

That's us. Whoever loves instruction loves knowledge. But he who hates correction is stupid. There it is. I didn't write it.

That's it. That's a perfect translation from the Hebrew. It's almost like a parent saying, are you stupid?

What were you thinking? And so you either get angry when they're right or you submit. And things get better very quickly. Why do wrong people hate to be caught? Well, I mean, I understand why they hate to be caught, but why do they then turn against the person for pointing out what they just did in front of everybody? Liars hate to be lied to.

That's another. Liars hate to be caught lying. In a sense that they won't admit it. And they get that smug face. You know that look when you've busted somebody for lying and they get that look. You want to just, you know what, the only way to deal with you?

But you can't. Always do it. Is it okay to beat up somebody if nobody catches you? No, it's not okay. We chuckle because that's what we like to do sometimes.

But one thing I like about, I'm almost done. Cartoons. The old ones, you know, the Bugs Bunny ones.

The Looney Tunes. They expressed human emotion without real consequence. I mean, you could drop a piano on somebody that irritated you and they wouldn't die. You could give him a bomb, he'd blow up and he'd be there all, you know, singed and everything, but then he'd be back in the next scene.

Unfortunately, life's not that way. You can drop a bomb with just a few words and do devastation to somebody. And so we have to be careful. Verse, verse 11. And when they heard it, they were glad, glad that Judas had come to them and promised to give him money. So he sought how he might conveniently betray him.

Conveniently. How convenient we say to people when they take the evil path because the right way is too difficult. You know, the saying, any dead fish can swim downstream.

It takes a live one to go against the stream. And that's what righteousness is. Righteousness goes against the stream of this world.

It swims in the opposite direction. And the opposition can intensify. But that, that is our calling in life, is to not go with convenience, nothing wrong with things that are convenient, so long as they do not silence righteousness.

What is correct? This is what gangsters do. They look for opportunity to off the opposition. Matthew 26, verse 15, gives us what Judas said in response, what are you willing to give me if I deliver him to you? And they counted out for him 30 pieces of silver.

So from that time, he sought opportunity to betray him. People still reject Christ and they do it for far less than 30 pieces of silver to this day. What are we going to do about that? Just keep growing in Christ.

That's all we have to do. If we grow in Christ, he'll direct us. Thanks for tuning in to Cross Reference Radio for this study in the book of Mark. Cross Reference Radio is the teaching ministry of Pastor Rick Gaston of Calvary Chapel Mechanicsville in Virginia. To learn more information about this ministry, visit our website, crossreferenceradio.com. Once you're there, you'll find additional teachings from Pastor Rick. We encourage you to subscribe to our podcast. When you subscribe, you'll be notified of each new edition of Cross Reference Radio. You can search for Cross Reference Radio on your favorite podcast app. That's all we have time for today, but we hope you'll join us next time as Pastor Rick continues to teach through the book of Mark, right here on Cross Reference Radio.
Whisper: medium.en / 2023-07-27 17:26:16 / 2023-07-27 17:35:43 / 9

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