A Disciple’s Rest

Passage: Mark 2:23-3:6

Guide for Group Discussion or Personal Reflection 

Read Mark 2:23-3:6:

One Sabbath he was going through the grain fields, and as they made their way, his disciples began to pluck heads of grain. 24And the Pharisees were saying to him, “Look, why are they doing what is not lawful on the Sabbath?” 25And he said to them, “Have you never read what David did, when he was in need and was hungry, he and those who were with him: 26how he entered the house of God, in the time of Abiathar the high priest, and ate the bread of the Presence, which it is not lawful for any but the priests to eat, and also gave it to those who were with him?” 27And he said to them, “The Sabbath was made for man, not man for the Sabbath. 28So the Son of Man is lord even of the Sabbath.”

1Again he entered the synagogue, and a man was there with a withered hand. 2And they watched Jesus, to see whether he would heal him on the Sabbath, so that they might accuse him. 3And he said to the man with the withered hand, “Come here.” 4And he said to them, “Is it lawful on the Sabbath to do good or to do harm, to save life or to kill?” But they were silent. 5And he looked around at them with anger, grieved at their hardness of heart, and said to the man, “Stretch out your hand.” He stretched it out, and his hand was restored. 6The Pharisees went out and immediately held counsel with the Herodians against him, how to destroy him.(ESV)

  1. What was meant by the statement, “It was religion that killed Jesus”?
  2. Throughout the story of the Bible, we see that God created humans with a deep need and longing for rest. What are some ways you still see this in today’s world?
  3. We sometimes misunderstand Sabbath rest to think it’s about doing nothing. What does the Bible actually mean bySabbath rest?
  4. What is the significance of God resting after he created our world?
  5. What did Jesus mean when he said, “The Sabbath is made for man, not man for the Sabbath.”?
  6. Why did the religious leaders of Jesus’s day resist the kind of Sabbath Jesus came to bring?
  7. It’s a lot easier to follow the rules than to follow Jesus. Why is that?
  8. In what ways do you resist the Sabbath rest Jesus wants you to experience, and why?
  9. How do you personally experience Sabbath rest? If this is a growth area for you, how could you begin to experience it more?
  10. What are some ways you could partner with Jesus in extending his rest to other people?