Repent and believe in the Gospel (Mk 1:15).
Treasure at home Just a story.
“A man travels all over the world in search of what he needs, and returns home to find it.”
The story of Israel's great ancestor - Abraham - begins with "exodus" from Ur of the Chaldeans.
Gen 11:28 says that Abraham’s family lived in “Ur of the Chaldeans”.
Chaldeans is another name for the Babylonians.
In Gen 10:6–12, the Bible describes for us the four sons of Ham, the youngest son of Noah who did something indecent to his father (see Gen 9:18–25).
Among them is Cush - the first, and Canaan - the last.
Cush had a son named Nimrod (Gen 10:8). He who was “a mighty hunter” and established two powerful kingdoms of Asyria and Babel (Babylon).
Both of those kingdoms destroyed Israel - the first in 722/1 BC and the second in 586 BC.
The story of Nimrod is followed by the story of building a godless project - the city of Babel/Babylon with its tower aiming for heaven (Gen 11:1-9).
So, it is from such a place that Abraham and his family moved aiming for Canaan (Gen 11:31).
They worshiped and served other gods (Joshua 24:2).
God called them/him (see Joshua 24:3; Gen 12:1).
In the midst of godless society and worshiping of other gods, the true God revealed himself to Abraham and told him to leave that place.
To the land of Canaan, which becomes the land of the patriarchs and the promised land.
Apparently the inhabitants of that land were not worthy to live there.
They polluted that land with their sins (see Gen 19:1–29; 15:16).
So, the story of Abraham begins the story of the people of Israele. And it is the main story of the Bible.
But where does this story ends?
The last book in the Jewish cannon of the Bible is not the book of the prophet Malachi, but the 2 book of Chronicles.
And how does this book ends?
The nation is sent to the exile back into Babylon.
Why? Because of their sins. They would have to spend there seventy years (2 Chron 36:21). Then, they will be able to return to Jerusalem, to the promised land, to God (2 Chron 36:22–23).
From Babylon to the Promised Land and then back to Babylon;
From a godless place to a godly place and then back to a godless place.
And all because of their sins.
Jacob and his entire family ends in Egypt, but Jacob wants to be buried in the Promised Land (Gen 49:29–33) and he was buried there (Gen 50:1–14).
Joseph also died in Egypt and he also wants to be buried in the Promised Land (Gen 50:24–26). And he was finally buried there (see Ex 13:19 and Joshua 24:32).
Joseph as a young boy left for Shechem in Gen 37:14 and finally reached Shechem in peace after his death (Joshua 24:32).
The Jewish cannon of the Bible ends with an offer of return (2 Chron 36:23).
But will they return?
What if some of them got used to living in a godless society?
Where do you live?
What is your Babylon?
Now, is the time to return to Jerusalem, to the house of God - the Church, to God.
Will you return?
Why did he decide to return home?
He came to his sense!
Do we have eyes that cannot see and ears that cannot hear?.
See Mark 8:18
The section of Mark 8:20 till Mark 10:52 is called “on the way”.
The section begins and ends with two stories of blind men being healed by Jesus.
In between is sandwich a section in which Jesus three times speaks about his incoming passion and resurrection and three times his disciples do not get it.
The way Jesus think and the way we think is entirely different.
Where we see a tragedy, Jesus sees the triumph;
where we see death only, Jesus sees victory of life.
Jesus’ disciples are blind;
we are blind although we think that we see.
When the blind Bartimaeus was healed, the Gospel tells us that he immediately followed Jesus “on the way (Mk 10:52). What kind of way?
Jesus was about to enter Jerusalem to offer his life and to get his life back; to die for us and to rise from the dead.
We are called to follow him on this way (Mk 8:34–35).
The blind Bartimaeus becomes an example of a true disciple. After being able to see - coming to his senses - he goes with Jesus to Jerusalem - to die to himself/ to sin and live for God.
There is one more example of a true disciple - an unknown woman (Mk 14:3–9).
On easter morning, “Mary Magdalene, Mary the mother of James, and Salome bought spices, so that they might go and anoint him” (Mk 16:1).
The point is that if they truly believed in Jesus’ words predicting his resurrection, they should not be there.
That unknown woman from Mk 14:3–9 believed and so she did something extraordinary: “she has anointed my body beforehand for burial” (Mk 14:8).
Somehow, she knew that there would not be any chance, no time to anoint Jesus after his burial, and so she did it “beforehand”.
Mary Magdalene and the other women could not find anymore the body of Jesus, they could not perform what that unknown woman did. And so, her story is remembered in the Gospel (read Mk 14:9).
His grandson was playing hide and seek with another child. He hid himself for some time, but his playmate did not look for him. The little boy ran to his grandfather and said amid tears: "He did not look for me!"
The grandfather said: "This is also God's complaint, that we seek Him not.
What does it mean "to believe" in the Bible?
Those who trust in the LORD are like Mount Zion, which cannot be moved, but abides forever (Ps 125:1)
The one who believes in God of the Bible
(1) accepts His word (Is 7:9b LXX) and
(2) attaches himself/herself to Him with the entire heart (Deut 6:5).
There is the meaning of security in the word "trust"
As the mountains surround Jerusalem, so the LORD surrounds his people, from this time forth and forevermore (Ps 125:2).
What does it mean “to believe in the Gospel”?
It means to trust (in) Jesus.
“Jesus, I trust (in) You”.
This short prayer recorded for us in the diary of Saint Faustina Kowalska is the summary of the entire Bible.
We trust Jesus - everything He revealed about God, himself, the meaning of life, and life's final desitation
We trust in Jesus - who is the Redemeer of the world (Jn 4:42).
Will you trust Jesus?
Will you let Jesus open your senses?
Will you follow Jesus to “Jerusalem” - wherever this place may be in your life?
Will you follow Jesus via cross to Easter?