By Luke Johnson | January 1, 2013
Read Mark 4:35-5:20
What’s the scariest, hugest storm you’ve ever been in?
What was it like for you? Was it exciting? Terrifying?
How small did you feel, looking at the huge waves or clouds?
Think about the disciples. Why are they scared? They’re fishermen. Don’t you think they’ve seen their share of huge storms?
Where is Jesus, and what is going through the disciples’ minds?
How does Jesus respond? What does he accuse them of lacking?
What sort of things have the disciples witnessed Jesus doing so far in Mark? (Flip back a few pages in your Bibles if you need a refresher.)
- Casting out demons (1:25; 3:11)
- Healing people (1:31-34, 40-42; 2:10-12; 3:1-6, 10)
- Speaking with authority (1:22; 2:18-22, 23-28; 3:21-30)
After seeing Jesus do so much, why do you think the disciples are afraid of a storm when Jesus is with them?
(They still don’t understand who he is.)
Who really knows who Jesus is?
What question do the disciples as each other in 4:41?
Now look through 5:1-13. What is the next thing a person says in the story? Who speaks next and what does he say?
(Verse 7; it’s the demon-possessed man who speaks, and calls Jesus “Son of the Most High God.”)
What’s going on here? How does this random guy in the wilderness know who Jesus is?
Mark wants us to notice something here: In 4:41, when Jesus stops the storm, the disciples ask, “Who is this…?” In the next passage, the very next person who speaks actually answers the disciples’ question. Mark is using the characters in the story to teach us who Jesus really is. The humans in the story don’t actually know -- but the demons do!
What does Jesus do when he sees that the man is being controlled by demons?
Look at verse 14. What do the pig-keepers do when Jesus tells the demons to get out of the man?
When Jesus comes into a story, he changes the people he encounters. How has he changed the man who had the demons in him? (5:15)
What was this man like before Jesus crossed paths with him? (5:3-5)
What do the people in that countryside think of Jesus?
(They’re terrified of him. They even ask him to leave!)
They don’t understand Jesus. His power scares them. But the man he healed understands him.
What does Jesus ask the man to do? (5:19)
The people living around Gerasenes were used to seeing the scary man who lives in the tombs. They could hear him howling and running around like a crazy person. Now that very same man travels around telling the story of how Jesus saved him from the demons and set him free. This is this man’s “Epiphany story.”
Think about Ian’s story that you heard tonight. Do you see any similarities? What about your leaders’ stories?
Finish this sentence: “Jesus is the kind of Lord who _________________________.”
(E.g., saves people from additions; heals people; loves people even when they don’t love themselves…)
Who do you know Jesus to be in your life? What kind of Lord has he been for you?
Has Jesus saved you from something?
Has he helped you to understand something?
Has he given you strength when you needed it?
Was he there for you when you thought you were alone?
How has Jesus shown up in your life?