Disciples’ Misplaced Zeal
37 total verses: Matthew 18:1-14; Mark 9:33-50; Luke 9:46-50
Brief description of action taking place or point being made
116. John’s zeal without understanding in Mark 9:38-42; Luke 9:49-50
117. Warnings about stumbling blocks in Matthew 18:7-11; Mark 9:43-50
118. Parable about the lost sheep in Matthew 18:12-14
1. What is your favorite verse or set of verses? Why?
2. Did you learn anything from the reading or find anything particularly cool? What?
3. Was there anything unclear in the passage that you have questions about? What are they?
Specific questions on this passage
After Completing the Bible Reading
Broader outline of each section of passage
Mark 9:38-42; Luke 9:49-50. John tells Jesus that they saw someone casting out demons in his name, and they tried to stop him. But Jesus tells them they should not try, since whoever is not against them is for them.
Matthew 18:7-11; Mark 9:43-50. Jesus indicates how seriously he takes sin, but saying that it is better to cut off part of your body if it will keep you from sinning. Since he is speaking metaphorically in this section, it is hard to tell whether he also is teaching that hell is literally an eternal fire that sinners will be thrown into.
Matthew 18:12-14. Jesus says that God does not want a single person to perish — to end up in hell. So he rejoices greatly over a person who changes direction from going to stray to being near the Shepherd.
My favorite passage and other random thoughts
My favorite verse is Matthew 18:14, which says, “‘It is not the will of my Father who is in heaven that one of these little ones should perish'” (ESV). I like this because it affirms God’s heart of always desiring the best in people, and that he is not cruel or unkind or heartless, as some who do not really know him accuse him of being.