Mark: According To
Payer For The Chosen
13 And He went up on the mountain and called to Him those He Himself wanted. And they came to Him. 14 Then He appointed twelve, that they might be with Him and that He might send them out to preach, 15 and to have power to heal sicknesses and to cast out demons:
This was evidently the hilly region to the west of the Lake of Galilee, then leaving His followers, Jesus spent the night on the mountain praying at some secluded spot. The Bible implies and some commentators on the Bible say that it was not unusual for Jesus to spend entire nights in prayer. Often these times in prayer preceded points of decision or crisis in Jesus life or ministry. He did this for forty days before he started His ministry and we see this on several occasions where the night was spent in prayer. But this night was spent in prayer for the 12 men he was about to ordain to carry His gospel message throughout Judea and later Samara and eventually to the world. Christ sought certain men that were teachable yet had passion.
Upon completion of this night in prayer he invited His disciples, His 12 chosen disciples to come up upon the mountain and sit at his feet. There was also a great multitude that follow Jesus and his disciples up the mountain and they sat upon a grassy plain. Matthew in his gospel recounts the sermon that took place upon this mountain as Jesus charged his disciples and explained to them what it takes to become a true follower and true leader for God (see Matthew chapters 5-7).
Here are the 12 that he chose. Simon, to whom He gave the name Peter; James the son of Zebedee and John the brother of James, to whom He gave the name Boanerges, that is, “Sons of Thunder”; Andrew the brother of Peter, who also brought Peter to Jesus, Philip, Bartholomew, Matthew, Thomas, James the son of Alphaeus, Thaddaeus, Simon the Cananite who was also of the political group called the Zealots and Judas Iscariot, who was treasurer of the disciples and was also the one that betrayed Him.
I wish time permitted to give a short biography of each and their life and ministry or lack of ministry but alas, time does not permit.
I have often wondered why Mark which is the story of Jesus as told through Peter’s eyes, fails to really talk about that sermon upon the mountain that Matthew takes such time to write in detail. But that really doesn’t fit the scope of why Mark wrote the gospel, and that was to show to us that Christ came to be a servant, to serve the people he came to save.
He came to seek, heal and save and the only way this can be accomplished is to serve those you seek. Christ employed this method and attempted to show His disciples the true cost of service for him.
It is now two millennium later and these 12 men chosen to serve and seek and save the lost have long since died, but Christ left us a challenge in Matthew 28:18-20 “And Jesus came and spoke to them saying, ‘All authority has been given to Me in heaven and on earth. Go therefore and make disciples of all nations, baptizing them in the name of the Father and the Son and the Holy Spirit, teaching them to observe all things that I have commanded you, and lo I am with you always, even to the end of the age. Amen.
We call it the great commission! But there is a little part, that I think most of us have forgotten, and that is to “Go therefore and make disciples of all nations.” Christ started with Just 12 and 11 of these twelve caused the whole world to sit up and take notice. They turned the world upside down. Today, what if we to have the attitude of a servant like Christ had and went out and ministered as Christ did, making disciples of all that accept the truth of the gospel and then baptizing them. Would it be possible for us to turn the world upside down again for God.
But in order to make this happen we need to pray as Christ prayed, we need to become teachers and servants and servant leaders, living our life in such a way that all that come in contact with us will say, Surely Christ lives within their heart. Then the world will sit up and take notice and the whole world is once again turned upside down.
In John chapter 17 Jesus prays a prayer for Himself. But this is really only a small percentage of what the total prayer is all about, for in that prayer he prays for His disciples. Not only the 11 that remained faithful to him but for Judas as well. But he also prayed for all of his faithful disciples down through the ages. This prayer includes you and I and all those that faithfully serve God with a servant like attitude who faithfully make new disciples to once again turn the world upside down.
One of the important aspects of this prayer of Jesus is that He prays that we will all be as one. By looking at Jesus we see the Father and we see the source of Jesus strength as He ministered to the people and His disciples. If we are to truly become disciples of Christ with the desire to turn the world upside down, then we to must develop the same relationship with God the Father as Christ had and we can only come to the Father through His son, Jesus Christ. Today, I ask, how is your relationship with Christ. Have you eaten of the bread of life today? Have you drunk of the living water that flows from the heart of Christ? Have you linked yourself through Christ to the father with your prayers allowing Christ’s righteousness to strengthen you and make up for where we fall short of God’s glory? If you have not, but desire to be a force for God on this earth, then I invite you to start by daily studying the word of God. Humbly bowing our head in prayer and follow the example of Christ by relying totally on our heavenly Father for all our needs.
Then and only then can we turn the world upside down for Christ and hasten the Lords return.