Mark 4 - Steve Wiggins Daily Devotional
“But when He was alone, those who were around Him with the twelve asked Him about the parables. He answered them, ‘The mystery of the kingdom of G-d has been granted to you, but to those outside, everything comes in parables, so that: They may look and look, yet not perceive; they may listen and listen, yet not understand; otherwise, they might turn back and be forgiven.’” Mark 4:10-12
At a glance, it seems that Yeshua desires for some men to know the truth, and for others to not. We know this is not the case, because if it were, His motive would be inconsistent with scripture. For example:
“This is good and acceptable in the sight of G-d our Savior, Who desires all men to be saved and come to the knowledge of the truth.” 1 Timothy 2:3-4
“The L-rd is not slow about His promise, as some count slowness, but is patient toward you, not wishing for any to perish, but for all to come to repentance.” 2 Peter 3:9
So what is the deal with Yeshua’s statement about insiders and outsiders?
First off, let’s examine who was with Yeshua. Some Bible translations lead you to believe that it was just Yeshua and the twelve disciples. The more accurate translations indicate that the twelve were there, but there were also others.
In Scripture, Yeshua is highly concerned about the source of testimony, with respect to His miracles and Messianic identity. He directed people to “tell no one, rather show yourself to the priests and present the offering Moses required.” He wanted things to stay on the eye-witness level, and not become a mob witness. Whenever a demon shouted Yeshua’s Messianic identity, Yeshua would silence it.
Basically, Yeshua wanted the Ruach (Spirit) to reveal that He was Messiah…not demons, a mob, or human intellect. That is not to say that we should not preach the Gospel. It is simply that our powers of persuasion do not make unbelievers believe. The Spirit reveals the truth when we preach. And the truth is found when people humbly seek it, because they are willing to receive the testimony of the Spirit whose ministry it is to reveal the truth. To the non-believer, the Bible (and Biblical preaching) are just words and ideas…but matched with the Ruach HaKodesh, G-d’s Word becomes “revelation”. For those willing to receive the Spirit’s revelation, simple morality lessons of “parables” become foundations for faithful living, fulcrums of repentance. Outsiders come in.
“And Yeshua said to him, ‘Blessed are you, Simon, son of Jonah! No human revealed this to you, but My Father in heaven.’” Matthew 16:17
Salvation is offered exclusively through Yeshua, but is available to all who will humble themselves, receive the testimony of G-d’s Spirit and faithfully believe.
~Steve Wiggins, Assistant Rabbi
Daily Devotional, Tuesday, May 21, 2013