Mark 1-7

"A house divided against itself cannot stand. I believe this government cannot endure, permanently half slave and half free."

Abraham Lincoln, from his speech at the 1858 Republican Convention

 

Among the many things that made Abe Lincoln so appealing, was his honesty and ability to simplify even the most complex problems. America was divided and heading head-long into war. Rather than deny that fact or make false promises that he would keep America out of that war, he went back to the great truth that our Lord had uttered some 1800 years earlier: "A house divided cannot stand".

 

Jesus made that point when the leaders of His time accused Him of working with Satan - a ridiculous assertion, since no sane movement works against itself. Jesus proved that He was on God's side, not Satan's, with that basic, but eloquent point: A house divided cannot stand.

 

One of the things you will notice as you read through the New Testament is the fact that God calls us to be one. Jesus came to this earth to build His church, not His churches. Not my church or your church, but His church. That church is referred to in Scripture as "the body of Christ", not "the bodies". And His body cannot be divided! 

 

Perhaps one of the most insulting accusations ever leveled against the teachings of Christ is that the Bible is too hard to understand - that no one can really "know the truth". This contradicts the teachings of Jesus, who plainly stated that "Ye shall know the truth, and the truth shall set you free."

 

On this 5th day of reading through the New Testament, you will be going through the first seven chapters of Mark. Having just read Matthew in the past few days, much will be familiar to you, and hopefully many things will strike you that might not have made an impression in the past.

 

Jesus came into this world to do His Father's will, and to save those who were lost. He knew that this life would be hard, but He also knew that it could be made easier if His followers would just work together. I believe we can - and most beautifully at that, but it will require a knowledge of God's will. 

 

We find that knowledge within the pages of the Bible - a love letter, if you will, from your Heavenly Father. He wants us to work together because He knows that a house divided cannot stand. We can have that unity that God desires for us if we have a basis for that work. I believe we do, and that basis is fully revealed within the pages of the Holy Word of God. The question is... will we even read it? Have you read your Bible today?

 

"If a kingdom is divided against itself, that kingdom cannot stand. And if a house is divided against itself, that house will not be able to stand."

Mark 3:24-25, RSV