We Are All About God’s Grace for God’s People


Mark 8:34 – ““If anyone would come after me, let him deny himself and take up his cross and follow me…”

Jesus, Misunderstood

Throughout his ministry wanderings, Jesus was often misunderstood. His family didn’t always understand him, his opponents certainly didn’t understand him, later in Jerusalem the crowds would misunderstand him, but also his disciples had a remarkable ability to misunderstand Jesus at pivotal moments too. Case in point: Peter in this week’s lesson. Peter just spoke a revelatory word about Jesus as the Christ, something the Father inspired him to say (Mark 8:29; see also Matthew 16:17), but when Jesus begins to unpack the significance and reality of what it means to be the Christ, Peter either completely misunderstands Jesus’ words or he intentionally refuses to understand. It appears it is the latter. Peter “rebukes” Jesus, the same words Mark uses for Jesus rebuking demons and unclean spirits. Jesus, in turn, “rebukes” Peter saying, “Get behind me Satan!” How does one man come so close to knowing who Jesus is, yet remain so far off the mark? How can one man be so correct in his confession and then be so, so terribly, dangerously wrong a few moments later?

I have always (painfully) connected myself to Peter because of this. We think we know Jesus, but then we realize how off base we are. We often make Jesus fit our image of who he should be rather than embracing him for who he truly was and still is according to the prophetic Scriptures of the Old and New Testaments. When the Lord brought me back to the Church, back to faith in Christ, I had a number of misguided thoughts about Jesus. He was (and still is!) far more gracious and precious than I could have ever imagined. Yet he was (and still is) also far more demanding than we comfortably would care to admit. “If anyone would come after me, let him deny himself and take up his cross and follow me…” (8:34)

This Lent, it is my hope and prayer that your understanding of Jesus matures, grows, is challenged and corrected by the Scriptures so that the fullness of Christ becomes yours more and more as Christ himself transforms you more and more by the Holy Spirit.

Lenten blessings,
Pastor Chris

This week at Christ the King

Tuesday, February 20th
1 PM Ladies’ JOY Book Club
7:30 PM Men’s Dartball
Wednesday, February 21st
9 AM Quilting
9:30 AM Bible Study – John 2:13-35
5:30 PM Lenten/Easter Choir
6 PM Soup & Sandwich Suppers
7 PM Lenten Worship – Holden Evening Prayer
Thursday, February 22nd
10 AM Coffee Clutch
11:30 AM Thursday Theology – Article Eight of the Formula of Concord
Saturday, February 24th – 5 PM Service of the Word
Sunday , February 25th – 2nd Sunday in Lent
9 AM Faith Formation (Sunday School and Confirmation)
9:30 AM Coffee Fellowship Time (Library)
10:30 AM Worship w/ Holy Communion
Noon First Communion Class: Session 1
4 PM Synod Confirmation Event @ First Lutheran, Gladstone

World Hunger Project

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Weekend Worship is at
5 p.m. on Saturdays
10:30 a.m. on Sunday mornings.
Communion is celebrated at every service and a staffed nursery is available during the 10:30 worship

Youth Faith Formation
(Sunday School)
Every Sunday from
9:00 – 10:15 am

Christ the King Lutheran Church
1230 N. 18th St.
Escanaba, Michigan
Phone: 906-786-7400