It is easy to advise one to consider in decision-making W.W.J.D.. However, such is beneficial only if one truly knows how Jesus lived. Too many do not. The book of Mark contains sixteen chapters. Let’s consider one snapshot of Jesus from each chapter.
- Jesus was a man of prayer. Mark 1:35: “Now in the morning, having risen a long while before daylight, He went out and departed to a solitary place; and there He prayed.” He not only instructed prayer (Mark 11:17; 13:33; 14:38), He practiced it (Mark 1:35; 6:46; 14:32).
- Jesus was a man of logic. Mark 2:16-17: “And when the scribes and Pharisees saw Him eating with tax collectors and sinners they said to His disciples, ‘How is it that He eats and drinks with tax collectors and sinners?’ When Jesus heard it, He said to them, ‘those who are well have no need of a physician, but those who are sick. I did not come to call the righteous, but sinners to repentance.’” He always had a reasonable answer for what He believed and practiced (Mark 2:16-17; 12:13-17; 12:18-27; 12:28-34).
- Jesus was a man of impartiality. Mark 3:31-34: “Then His brothers and His mother came, and standing outside they sent to Him, calling Him. And the multitude was sitting around: and they said to Him, ‘Look, Your mother, and Your brothers are outside seeking You.’ But He answered them saying, ‘Who is My mother, or my brothers? And He looked around in a circle at those who sat about Him, and said, ‘Here are My mother and My brothers! For whoever does the will of God is My brother and My sister and mother.’” There was something more important to Him than earthly kinship (Luke 11:27-28 Acts 10:34-35).
- He was a man of power. Mark 4:39-41: “Then He arose and rebuked the wind, and said to the sea, ‘Peace be still!’ And the wind ceased and there was a great calm But He said to them, ‘Why are you so fearful? How is it that you have no faith?’ And they feared exceedingly and said to one another, ‘Who can this be, that even the wind and the sea obey Him!’” He had power over nature, but did not force anyone to follow Him.
- Jesus was a man of compassion. Mark 5:18-20: “And when He got into the boat, he who had been demon-possessed begged Him that he might be with Him. However, Jesus did not permit him, but said to him, ‘Go home to your friends, and tell them what great things the Lord has done for you, and how He has had compassion on you.’ And he departed and began to proclaim in Decapolis all that Jesus had done for him; and all marveled. Do we, as Jesus have compassion for others? Are we, as this healed man, practicing friendship evangelism? cf. 1 Peter 2:9.
- Jesus was a man of comfort. Mark 6:49-51: “And when they saw Him walking on the sea, they supposed it was a ghost, and cried out; for they all saw Him and were troubled; But immediately He talked with them and said to them, ‘Be of good cheer! It is I; do not be afraid.’ Then he went up into the boat to them, and the wind ceased.” Does our presence bring comfort and peace to others? cf. 1 Thessalonians 4:18; 5:14.
- Jesus was a man of perfection. Mark 7:37: “And they were all astonished beyond measure, saying, ‘He has done all things well.’” He did not half way do things. Do we? cf. Colossians 3:23; Ecclesiastes 9:10.
- Jesus was a man of proper values. Mark 8:36-37: “For what will it profit a man if he gains the whole world, and loses his own soul? Or what will a man give in exchange for his soul?” This is what He taught. Is this how we see things? Do we value the souls about physical life and material things?
- Jesus was a man who taught service. Mark 9:33-35: “Then He came to Capernaum. And when He was in the house He asked them, ‘What was it you disputed among yourselves on the road?’ But they kept silent, for on the road they had disputed among themselves who would be the greatest. And He sat down, called the twelve, and said, ‘If anyone desires to be first, he shall be last of all and servant of all.’” Greatness, He said, was found in serving others.
- Jesus was a man who practiced service. Mark 10:42-45: “But Jesus called them to Himself and said to them, ‘You know that those who are considered rulers over the Gentiles lord it over them, and their great ones exercise authority over them. Yet it shall not be so among you; but whoever desires to become great among you shall be your servant. And whoever of you desires to be first shall be slave of all. For even the Son of Man did not come to be served, but to serve, and give His life a ransom for many.’” He not only taught it, He practiced it.
- Jesus was a man who rode a donkey. Mark 11:7-8: “Then they brought the colt to Jesus and threw their clothes on it, and He sat on it. And many spread their clothes on the road, and others cut down leafy branches from the trees and spread them on the road.” This was Jesus’ triumphant entry. This was the fulfillment of Zechariah 9:9 which reads, “Rejoice greatly, O daughter of Zion! Shout, O daughter of Jerusalem! Behold, your king is coming to you; He is just and having salvation, lowly and riding on a donkey.” He came in peace. The donkey “is associated throughout the Bible with peaceful pursuits (Genesis 42:26-f; 22:3; 1 Samuel 16:20; 2 Samuel 19:26; Nehemiah 13:15), whereas the horse is referred to in connection with war and armies” (The International Standard Bible Encyclopedia, Vol. 1, p. 287). It as “preferred by rulers and great men for peaceful journeys. Horses were reserved for war” (The Zondervan Pictorial Bible Dictionary, p. 40). Jesus came in peace, offering salvation. He did not come to make war against sinful man (cf. John 3:17). Moreover, He did not enter being carried on the backs of men or in an expensive chariot. He entered on a donkey, “Something the humblest peasant (often) owned” (I.S.B.E.).
- Jesus was a man who knew the scripture and rebuked error. Mark 12:24-27: “Jesus answered and said to them, ‘Are you not therefore mistaken, because you do not know the scriptures nor the power of God? For when they rise from the dead, they neither marry nor are given in marriage, but are like angels in heaven. But concerning the dead, that they rise, have you not read in the book of Moses, in the burning bush passage, how God spoke to him saying, ‘I am the God of Abraham, the God of Isaac, and the God of Jacob? He is not the God of the dead, but the God of the living. You are therefore greatly mistaken.’” Jesus frequently said things like – “have you not read” (Mark 2:25; 12:10; 12:26; Matthew 12:3; 12:5; 19:4; 21:16; 21:42; 22:31; 24:15); “it is written” (Mark 7:6; 9:12; 9:13; 11:17; 14:21; 14:27; Matthew 4:4; 4:7; 4:10; 11:10; 21:13; 26:24; 26:31); and, “you are mistaken, not knowing the scriptures” (Matthew 22:29; Mark 12:24; 12:27). Too many of us are silent in the presence of doctrinal error.
- Jesus was a man of vigilance. Mark 13:32-37: “But of that day and hour no one knows, not even the angels in heaven, nor the Son, but only the Father. Take heed, watch and pray; For you do not know when the time is. It is like a man going into a far country, who left his house and gave authority to his servants, and to each his work, and commanded the doorkeeper to watch. Watch therefore, for you do not know when the master of the house is coming – in the evening, at midnight, at the crowing of the rooster, or in the morning – lest coming suddenly, he find you sleeping. And what I say to you, “say to all watch!” Do we so live in expectation of His return?
- Jesus was a man determined to do the will of the Father. Mark 14:35-36: “He went a little farther, and fell on the ground, and prayed that if it were possible, the hour might pass from Him. And He said, ‘Abba, Father, all things are possible for You. Take this cup away from Me; nevertheless, not what I will, but what You will.’” Are we so determined? He calls on us to deny ourselves, take up our cross, and follow after Him (Mark 8:34-35; 10:21-22).
- Jesus was a man who allowed Himself to be bound. Mark 15:1: “They bound Jesus, led Him away, and delivered Him to Pilate.” The man who calmed the wind and the sea (Mark 4:39-41; 6:45-51), and handled a man no one could restrain (Mark 5:1-15) allowed Himself to be bound. He had more than twelve legions of angels at his disposal (Matthew 26:52-54). Yet, He came “to give His life a ransom for many” (Mark 10:45). Love is what bound Him.
- Jesus was (is) a man of mercy and forgiveness. Mark 16:15-16: “And He said to them, ‘Go into all the world and preach the gospel to every creature. He who believes and is baptized will be saved; but he who does not believe will be condemned.” He gave man an opportunity for forgiveness.
*Note: The idea for this article comes from Johnny Ramsey who urged students at the Brown Trail School of Preaching to remember one point about Jesus per chapter in the book of Mark.