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Mark 11:1-33

"Let's turn in our Bibles to Mark chapter 11. I'd just like to welcome the new faces this morning...But we're gonna continue in Mark chapter 11. Let's say a word of prayer. 'And Father, as we enter this time of just looking together upon your Word, give us eyes to see Lord, what you have here for us Lord. Give us ears to hear, heart to understand and receive. But we thank you for your Word. And Lord I do pray that all of us would be doers of the Word and not hearers only. I pray this in Jesus name, Amen.'

Let's begin in verse 1, "Now when they drew near Jerusalem to Bethphage and Bethany, at the Mount of Olives..." Now, as you remember last week, it was just a few weeks before the crucifixion. Now we're about a week before Jesus is crucified on the cross. [To read a complimentary study on this subject Click Here ] And they've come to the area of the Mount of Olives, and if they just transverse over the Mount of Olives they'll begin to descend upon the city of Jerusalem. Whenever you come to the area of Jerusalem, even today on a tour, anytime of history God's eyes have been on that part of the world. It's just a very emotional, powerful experience. Many religions look to Jerusalem. And this is just about Passover time, so there are many people who have come from around the world and have just centered and focussed on this city. Josephus, a Jewish historian, tells us there were millions and millions of sacrificed lambs this particular year, it's recorded. And with that you can kind of get a guess of the number of people [one sacrificed lamb was supposed to be used to feed 10 to 20 people as recorded in Exodus]. Some say with taking into account Josephus number of lambs recorded as being sacrificed, there's nearly three million people that converged at this time upon the city of Jerusalem [normal population for then of 300,000, so the population has been multiplied times 10!]. So there's a lot of energy, a lot of anticipation, a lot of excitement. [And this is just part of the normal Jerusalem Passover cycle of those times, without even going into the stir Jesus was creating.] [For another very interesting study on Passover and it's meaning to Jew and Christian alike as told by a man who grew up a Jew and is now a Christian pastor, Click Here .] As we studied last week, when Jesus was going this last time to the city of Jerusalem, his disciples just began to get a sense to them, to see what was ahead of them, a face like flints set for the city of Jerusalem. And he walked ahead of the disciples and they began to sense that something was going down, and just, you know, as you remember last week. There was even fear in their hearts, so it's been this time of emotion. And now as they come near the city of Jerusalem with all that's going on, man it must be a very emotional time for these disciples and for Jesus. Especially, Jesus knowing just days away what is going to take place. I would think just every time Jesus woke up and got that much closer to the cross, all the more that just as a man, the emotion and the sense in his heart that just knowing that he was going to be betrayed and be crucified on a cross, and to endure that. So that's where we find ourselves here. And now they're converging upon the city of Jerusalem, but they're at this area of Bethany and here it's unique, just a tremendous time for the disciples. He says to the disciples, he says to them specifically, 'Go to the village opposite us here and go in and I want you to get this colt. You're gonna find a colt when you get there, a foal, the foal of a donkey, and I want you to bring this donkey (and it's foal), and I want you to bring them to me. When you get there, if anyone sees you there taking this colt, you're gonna...You're gonna find this colt, it's gonna be near the entrance to the city--but when you take this colt if anyone has any questions just tell them that the Lord has need of it. And when you tell them that, they're gonna let you take them.' So the disciples, as we read in a moment are gonna go and do that. Let's continue reading. I'm getting a little ahead of myself, aren't I. We haven't read these verses yet.

Mark 11:2-6, "He sent two of his disciples, and he said to them, 'Go into the village opposite you, and as soon as you have entered it you will find a colt tied, on which no one has sat. Loose it and bring it. And if anyone says to you Why are you doing this? Say The Lord has need of it. And immediately he will send it.' So they went their way and found the colt tied by the door outside the street, and they loosed it, but some of those who stood there said to them, 'What are you doing there, loosing the colt?' And they spoke to them just as Jesus had commanded, so they let them go." Just as I told you, as we now read, these are the things that begin to happen. Jesus instructs his disciples, and they go and do accordingly.

Now when you and I are pursuing paths that Jesus has led us on, when we're going down a road that we feel God has led us on, we're gonna see that God has prepared the way before us. Wherever I go, if I believe God is leading me, God's gonna prepare the way. What that means is, when I go down a certain path, I'm not gonna have to strive, I'm not gonna compromise, I'm not gonna need to manipulate people for things to take place. When I'm going somewhere God has led me, he's gonna prepare the way, without a doubt. No need to force doors open, just simply to do as he says and to walk in faith, because he wills, he's just gonna prepare the way. It'll never ever require that I manipulate people, it'll never require that I compromise, just simply that I walk and step out in faith. The Psalmist stated in Psalm 85, "Righteousness will go before him and shall make his footsteps our pathway." It says 'Righteousness goes before God and his footsteps will prepare my pathway', meaning the footsteps of God. If I'm going the way that God desires me to go, his footsteps are going to prepare the way, and that's a way of righteousness, of right doing. Therefore there's no compromise if I'm going the way God wants me to go, or no manipulating. If you think you are in the will today, the will of God, but you find yourself in compromise, it's clear that you're not in God's will. God didn't lead you into compromise. If you feel you are pursuing a path that God has led you on, but yet you find yourself manipulating people, a relationship that maybe you have, you're not going the way that God desires you to go, because God will prepare the way before you. That's one thing we know, that when we go in the will of God, God has spoken to me to do something, I'll know that he's prepared the way. I'll see that he's prepared the way as I go. Are God's footsteps your pathway? Would Jesus be doing what you're currently doing? If not, it's a good chance that you've not gone on a route that God has led you to go on. Where God guides God provides, where God leads he prepares the way, as we see here in these verses.

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content Editor Peter Benson -- no copyright, except where noted.  Please feel free to use this material for instruction and edification
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