Preparing For Holy Week–Tuesday, Day Three

After two days which would have taken an emotional toll on anyone, Jesus spent the third day of Passion Week in the vicinity of the temple teaching the people and disputing with the chief priests, scribes, and the elders (Mark 11:27). Tuesday was a momentous day as Jesus spoke of faith and prayer, answered questions meant to entrap him, and taught about the coming days of tribulation. The events of Tuesday are found in Mark 11:20-13:36.

Jesus’ actions on Monday (cleansing the temple, Mark 11:12-19) had already set in motion the determination of the religious authorities to kill him. His teaching on Tuesday only set their minds more deliberately (Mark 12:13).

Jesus began His day by telling Simon Peter and others about faith and prayer. When Peter noticed that the fig tree (Mark 11:12-14) had withered from its roots, Jesus taught the disciples about faith. He reminded them “all things are possible to those who believe.”  His emphasis on faith and belief is not an invitation to use magic but an encouragement for us to become heroes of faith (Hebrews 11).

During this day, the religious authorities asked Him four provocative questions. (1) By what authority do you do what you do? (2) May God’s people pay tribute to Caesar? (3) Do the dead rise? and (4) What is the chief commandment?

Jesus also used this day to prepare His disciples for the things to come. God always prepares His people. We must be people who are open to God’s direction and who are ready for difficult days.

Jesus prepared them for two events. First, he answered the question about the destruction of the temple (Mark 13:1-2) which occurred in AD 70 (Matthew’s gospel makes it even more clear He is answering a direct question about the destruction of the temple, Matthew 24). Second, He prepared them for His return. Jesus reminded His followers–and us–of the necessity of being wakeful and watching. Chapter 13 ends with Jesus telling His followers to “watch.” The Greek verb is a present imperative. It means to “keep on watching.”

What should we do on this significant day?

Jesus began Tuesday outside Jerusalem telling the disciples the importance of faith (Mark 11:20-26). He closed His day by telling His followers to be watchful and ready because “you do not know when the master of the house will come” (Mark 13:32-36).

We must be people of faith because “without faith it is impossible to please [God]” (Hebrews 11:6) and we must be people who are ready for our Lord to return because “This Jesus, who was taken from you into heaven, will come in the same way as you saw him go into heaven” (Acts 1:11).

Each day this week we will look at the what Jesus did during His last week of earthly ministry. Please join us each day as we discuss the events of holy week and their meaning for us. You may find these daily posts at

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One Comment

  1. Ed Matthew
    Mar 26, 2013

    Faith with a purpose that extends beyond selfishness.

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About Waylon

I am the senior pastor of First Baptist Church, Covington, Louisiana, a position that I have held since 1989.

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Verse of the Day

[Doing Good to All] Brothers and sisters, if someone is caught in a sin, you who live by the Spirit should restore that person gently. But watch yourselves, or you also may be tempted. — Galatians 6:1 (NIV)