"Meanderings in Mark"
Series on Mark, Lesson 2

One of Us

Read: Mark 1:9-13

Text: Mark 1:13 (KJV) And he was there in the wilderness…

Theme: Jesus' baptism and temptation completely identified Him with mankind.


Two questions come to mind about this passage:

QUESTION - Could Jesus Christ have sinned? (As some would say the baptism and temptation imply) Is that what the Bible is teaching here?

  • John 8:46 (KJV) Which of you convinceth me of sin?

    Heb 4:15 (KJV) For we have not an high priest which cannot be touched with the feeling of our infirmities; but was in all points tempted like as we are, yet without sin.

    Heb 7:26 (KJV) For such an high priest became us, who is holy, harmless, undefiled, separate from sinners, and made higher than the heavens

    1 Pet 1:19 (KJV) But with the precious blood of Christ, as of a lamb without blemish and without spot:

    1 Pet 2:22 (KJV) Who did no sin, neither was guile found in his mouth:

    2 Cor 5:21 (KJV) For he hath made him to be sin for us, who knew no sin; that we might be made the righteousness of God in him.

  • NO, a thousand times, NO! Jesus could not and would not sin. Neither of these events was concerned with that, or in any way teaches that. Rather, they had a totally different purpose. Both identified Him as man, and with man.

    I. His Baptism Identified Him. (Vs. 9-11)

  • QUESTION - In what ways did the baptism of Jesus Christ identify Him?

    A. His baptism was decisive identification.

  • 1. It confused John.
  • (cf. Mat 3:13-14 (KJV) Then cometh Jesus from Galilee to Jordan unto John, to be baptized of him. But John forbad him, saying, I have need to be baptized of thee, and comest thou to me?)
  • 2. However, it was simply the moment Jesus used to mark the beginning.

    QUESTION - Is it important for believers today to be decisive and public in their identification with Christ? Why or why not?

    3. Decisive identification is important for Christians, too.

  • QUESTION - What are some areas where we need to take a stand today?

    ILLUS. Pilgrim and Interpreter were approaching the palace that could only be taken by FIGHTING! Strong Man approached and said, "Set down my name, Sir." (From Pilgrim's Progress)

    ILLUS. The Death of John Huss: "When John Huss, the Bohemian martyr, was brought out to be burnt, they put on his head a triple crown of paper, with painted devils on it. On seeing it, he said, 'My Lord, Jesus Christ, for my sake, wore a crown of thorns; why should not I then, for His sake, wear this light crown, be it ever so ignominious? Truly I will do it, and that willingly.' When it was set upon his head, the bishops said, 'Now, we commend thy soul to the Devil.' 'But I,' said Huss, lifting up his eyes to Heaven, 'do commit my spirit into Thy hands, O Lord Jesus Christ; to Thee I commend my spirit, which Thou hast redeemed.' When the fagots were piled to Huss' neck, the Duke of Bavaria was officious enough to desire him to adjure. 'No,' said Huss, 'I never preached any doctrine of an evil tendency; and what I taught with my lips I now seal with my blood.'"

  • B. His baptism was approved identification.

  • QUESTION - We discussed this in last week's lesson, but let's review it now: Who gave approval to Jesus Christ in this passage?

    1. God the Father added His voice. (vs. 11)

    2. He was not just a man, but THE man that God approved.

  • 3. (Repeated at transfiguration 3 years later.)
  • NOTE:

  • C. His baptism was equipping identification.
  • QUESTION - How was Jesus equipped here?

    1. Holy Spirit added His equipping. (Vs. 10)

    2. He was not just a man, but a man led by the Spirit of God.

  • (NOTE - He voluntarily submitted Himself to the Spirit's leading in His life.)
  • Luke 4:1 (KJV) And Jesus being full of the Holy Ghost returned from Jordan, and was led by the Spirit into the wilderness,
  • Luke 4:13-14 (KJV) And when the devil had ended all the temptation, he departed from him for a season. And Jesus returned in the power of the Spirit into Galilee: and there went out a fame of him through all the region round about.
  • QUESTION - Why is the fact that Jesus was equipped and empowered by the Holy Spirit important? Does it apply to us today? How?

    3. The Holy Ghost was His source of power, just like He is our source of power.

  • QUOTE - "Although a Christian can never lose the gift of salvation, he can still have a power failure."

    Zec 4:6 (KJV) Then he answered and spake unto me, saying, This is the word of the LORD unto Zerubbabel, saying, Not by might, nor by power, but by my spirit, saith the LORD of hosts.

    Acts 1:8 (KJV) But ye shall receive power, after that the Holy Ghost is come upon you: and ye shall be witnesses unto me both in Jerusalem, and in all Judaea, and in Samaria, and unto the uttermost part of the earth.

    1 Cor 2:4 (KJV) And my speech and my preaching was not with enticing words of man's wisdom, but in demonstration of the Spirit and of power:

    Gal 5:16 (KJV) This I say then, Walk in the Spirit, and ye shall not fulfil the lust of the flesh.

  • D. His baptism was IDENTIFICATION.

  • QUESTION - What does Christian baptism identify?

    1. Christian baptism identifies:

  • Rom 6:3-4 (KJV) Know ye not, that so many of us as were baptized into Jesus Christ were baptized into his Therefore we are buried with him by baptism into death: that like as Christ was raised up from the dead by the glory of the Father, even so we also should walk in newness of life.
  • ILLUS. Wedding ring. (Just as married with or without the ring, but people KNOW you are married when they see the ring. Baptism, in the same way, provides outward evidence of an inward experience… outward IDENTIFICATION with Christ.)
  • 2. John's baptism identified:

  • QUESTION - What did John's baptism identify?

    ANSWER - Repentance and identification with those who recognized their need for a savior.

  • 3. Christ's baptism identified:

    QUESTION - What did Christ's baptism identify?

  • II. His Temptation Identified Him. (vs. 12-13, cf. Matthew 4)

    (NOTE - most of these thoughts are from Matthew's account. Read Matthew 4:1-11 before proceeding.)

    QUESTION - In what ways did the temptation of Jesus Christ identify Him as a man?

  • QUESTION - According to verses Matthew 4:3-4, what do you think Satan wanted from Jesus Christ? What was Christ's response to Satan?

    A. He said, "Satan, I'll defeat you as a man." (Matthew 4:3-4)

  • 1. Satan wanted a conflict with God. (Matthew 4:3)
  • Gen 3:15 (KJV) And I will put enmity between thee and the woman, and between thy seed and her seed; it shall bruise thy head, and thou shalt bruise his heel.
  • 2. Jesus said, "I face you as MAN!"
  • Mat 4:4 (KJV) But he answered and said, It is written, Man shall not live by bread alone, but by every word that proceedeth out of the mouth of God.
  • 3. Jesus said, "I face you with man's weapons."

  • QUESTION - What weapon(s) did Jesus use? How powerful is this weapon? Do we need anything else in our battles with Satan today?
  • Eph 6:17 (KJV) And take the helmet of salvation, and the sword of the Spirit, which is the word of God:
  • Mat 16:18 (KJV) And I say also unto thee, That thou art Peter, and upon this rock I will build my church; and the gates of hell shall not prevail against it.

    Heb 4:12 (KJV) For the word of God is quick, and powerful, and sharper than any twoedged sword, piercing even to the dividing asunder of soul and spirit, and of the joints and marrow, and is a discerner of the thoughts and intents of the heart.

  • B. He said, "Satan, I'll do it as a man, but GOD'S WAY." (Matthew 4:5-7)

  • QUESTION - In Satan's second temptation, what was he attempting to appeal to in Christ?

    1. Satan tried to appeal to the fanaticism in man.

    2. Often we fail with good intentions because we get crazy in trying to serve God.

  • ILLUS. The Gospel Blimp (That's not God's way.)

    QUESTION - Can you think of other examples?

  • 3. Often we fail because of lack of patience with God's methods.

  • ILLUS. Preaching the word versus promotion.

    ILLUS. Pure holy living versus compromise and worldliness.

    QUESTION - Can you think of other examples?

  • 4. Jesus said, "I'll do it God's way."

    QUESTION - Is there ever a time when God's way is the wrong way? Is there ever a time when God's way is obsolete? Is there ever a more effective way than God's way? Why do we spend so much time looking for new and better ways, then?

  • C. He said, "Satan, I'll give my allegiance as a man to God, NOT TO YOU." (Matthew 4:8-10)

  • QUESTION - In this last temptation, what did Satan reveal as his heart's desire?

    QUESTION - What other things about Satan do we learn here? (Read Luke 4:6 and ask this question again.)

    1. Satan revealed his heart in a last ditch effort.

    2. "I want worship of men." (Satan's real desire.)

  • NOTE - Luke adds: Luke 4:6 (KJV) And the devil said unto him, All this power will I give thee, and the glory of them: for that is delivered unto me; and to whomsoever I will I give it.
  • 3. Jesus said, "As a man, I will worship God."
  • D. In His temptation, two things become clear:

  • 1. There was no sin in Him.

    2. He was a man, JUST LIKE US, and defeated Satan AS A MAN!

  • Conclusion:

    Jesus identified Himself as one of us. Why is that important?

    Because, only when He became one of us, could we become one with Him.

    Only when He became a man, (became one of us), and became sin for us, and became our perfect sacrifice, could we become one with Him.

    There is no more beautiful and important truth in the Bible than the truth that Jesus Christ, Emmanuel, became ONE OF US.

    Please direct questions, comments, and submissions to William E. Johnson
    Copyright 1997 William E. Johnson.