This passage includes two different stories that may seem unrelated at first, but look carefully. In the first, Jesus isn’t accepted by the people who grew up with him. Next, he sends out the men he trained to be disciples, cautioning them that some may not receive them either. You have probably experienced the same: acceptance and rejection.
- Think of a time when you were rejected or when you felt rejected.
- Ask God to help you examine how you felt as you read these verses and see that Jesus was also rejected.
READ THE WORD: MARK 6:1-13 (ESV)
1He went away from there and came to his hometown, and his disciples followed him. 2 And on the Sabbath he began to teach in the synagogue, and many who heard him were astonished, saying, “Where did this man get these things? What is the wisdom given to him? How are such mighty works done by his hands? 3 Is not this the carpenter, the son of Mary and brother of James and Joses and Judas and Simon? And are not his sisters here with us?” And they took offense at him. 4 And Jesus said to them, “A prophet is not without honor, except in his hometown and among his relatives and in his own household.” 5 And he could do no mighty work there, except that he laid his hands on a few sick people and healed them. 6 And he marveled because of their unbelief.
And he went about among the villages teaching.
7 And he called the twelve and began to send them out two by two, and gave them authority over the unclean spirits. 8He charged them to take nothing for their journey except a staff—no bread, no bag, no money in their belts— 9 but to wear sandals and not put on two tunics. 10 And he said to them, “Whenever you enter a house, stay there until you depart from there. 11 And if any place will not receive you and they will not listen to you, when you leave, shake off the dust that is on your feet as a testimony against them.” 12 So they went out and proclaimed that people should repent. 13And they cast out many demons and anointed with oil many who were sick and healed them.
English Standard Version, copyright 2001 by Crossway Bibles. Used by permission. All rights reserved.
- Jesus was being rejected by the people he had known his entire life. How did he respond—what did he say and do? How do you respond when you are rejected?
- When Jesus sent his disciples out, what did he tell them to take with them and what did he tell them to leave behind? Make a list. Why do you think Jesus gave these specific instructions?
- What resources did Jesus give the disciples as he sent them (vs. 7)? Why is community so critical to us as people?
- Where is Jesus sending you out, and who is going with you along the way?
RESPOND TO GOD
The fact that the people who had known Jesus his entire life had no idea that he was God shows Jesus’ humanity. He was fully man while being fully God. He experienced all of life’s realities and every emotion, just like we do. He knows what it is like to be sent, and he knows how it feels to be accepted and rejected. And he knows how much we need relationships.
- Praise him that he understands us so completely.
- Pray for the people that God has given you to go out through life with.
- If you are struggling with feeling alone, pray that God would show you who you could be in community with today.