Mark 11:1 “…near Jerusalem, to Bethphage and Bethany, at the Mount of Olives…”
Small villages along the road to Jerusalem from Jericho. Pretty close if they were counted at or near the Mount of Olives which is just across the valley from Jerusalem.
13 “…perhaps He would find something on it…it was not the season for figs”
Figs arrive before or along with the leaves. When Jesus saw the leaves He assumed the fruit was already there, albeit early for the fig season.
18 “…scribes and chief priests heard it and sought how they might destroy Him…”
Had quite a racket going. I would imagine they got a cut from the buying and selling if it wasn’t they who were doing the actual dealing. Jesus had also referred to them as thieves so they weren’t happy about that either. Biggest deal is they saw no problem taking up the temple space given for the Gentiles to worship. They had no respect for God’s house and no compassion for those who needed to worship Him.
19 “When evening had come, He went out of the city.”
Going into Jerusalem each day, and spending the night back in Bethany.
24 “…whatever things you ask when you pray, believe that you receive them, and you will have them”
Name and claim, blab and grab. Jesus wants us to trust in God, that He wants to provide for us and that He will. So when we ask, we need to have faith that God will answer. But we also trust Him that He won’t give us what may be bad for us, what we don’t need. We may ask for the wrong things or something below what He intends for us. We need to be sure our requests are aligned with His will as much as possible. But we can always trust Him whether we ask correctly or not.
25 “…whenever you stand praying, if you have anything against anyone, forgive him…”
God is interested in our spiritual condition and maturity. We don’t forgive others for their benefit, but for our own. It’s not pleasant when someone does something to us, but God is more concerned with our reaction to it than what was done. It’s an indicator of our character. Are we becoming more like Christ or are we still focused on ourselves. This also goes to explain what Jesus said in verse 24. Our hearts must be right before Him for us to expect Him to answer. We don’t have to be perfect. God puts up with a lot of our garbage. But we must have a spirit of contrition toward Him. We must be willing to repent when confronted.
30 “…was it from heaven or from men…”
Was a legitimate question. Of course Jesus knew they were only trying to find an excuse to accuse Him, but it could have led to a revealing discussion. If they’d been honest and said John’s baptism was from heaven, Jesus could have shown them John was the forerunner and He was the Messiah. If they had only considered John’s baptism as earthly, He could have given evidence to the contrary. But they weren’t looking for the truth so there was no reason to oblige them with it.
I hope you enjoy reading and studying His word. May it accomplish what He desires. Please feel free to comment or post questions. Thanks for reading!
Scripture taken from the New King James Version®. Copyright © 1982 by Thomas Nelson. Used by permission. All rights reserved.