42 - Young Mark

Life Lessons with Dr. Steve Schell

28-12-2023 • 32 minutos

As Paul and Barnabas set out from Antioch on their mission, Luke briefly mentions they “also had John (Mark) as their helper.” He didn’t last long. No sooner did they leave the island of Cyprus and head toward the interior of Asia Minor than “…John left them and returned to Jerusalem.” The reason for this isn’t stated, but it’s some sort of failure because Paul’s confidence in him was shaken, and he wouldn’t allow him to accompany them on the next trip (Ac 15:36-40). Yet, this certainly wasn’t the end of Mark’s development into a minister of God. He kept on learning and growing. Barnabas, of course, didn’t give up on him. When Paul refused, Barnabas changed his own plans and took Mark with him to Cyprus where they probably revisited the believers they had led to Christ on the first mission (Ac 15:39).  The point is, all young disciples make mistakes, as do older disciples. But the danger is greater for the young that they will be categorized as failures and cast aside. Someone, someone older, needs to believe in them, to pick them up, dust them off, and encourage them to keep growing. And most will, if they are cared for. The father-hand of God and the passing of time will do the rest. And then they will rise to a level beyond what anyone thought possible. Take Mark for example. Here in Acts he looks like such a failure, but that’s not the end of his story. Of all people, Paul, as he sits in Nero’s prison in Rome, awaiting his trial that would bring a death sentence, writes to Timothy, another young disciple who struggled with courage issues (2Ti 1:7, 8), and he said this, “Only Luke is with me. Pick up Mark and bring him with you for he is very helpful to me for ministry” (2Ti 4:11). Clearly, Mark had regained Paul’s respect and earned his trust. Oh, and there’s one more thing we should mention: Mark wrote the first gospel, which provided a foundation for Luke and Matthew to write theirs. In other words, the kid who lost his nerve at Perga went on to strengthen for all time the entire church of Jesus Christ. Thanks Mark!

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