Teaching Notes are Bible studies we taught before GraceLife Ministries began publishing articles online in 1995. Some were presented as sermons, others as group studies.

Our hope is that these older studies will be a blessing to you in your life and ministry. Please use them in any way God leads you.

These teaching notes are from a series of studies about the Gospel of Mark.

[These notes are from a study prepared 45 years ago.]

Outline of Mark Chapter 11

I. Jesus enters Jerusalem in triumph. (1-11)

II. Jesus curses the barren fig tree. (12-14)

III. Jesus drives the traders and money-changers out of the Temple. (15-19)

IV. Jesus teaches the disciples the power of faith and prayer. (20-24)

V. Jesus teaches the disciples the importance of a forgiving spirit. (25-26)

VI. Jesus’ authority is challenged by chief priests, scribes and elders, but He puts them to silence by His Divine Wisdom. (27-33)

Personal Interpretation of Mark 11

Jesus had set His face towards Jerusalem and the time had come for all to be fulfilled. Interestingly enough, even His entry was part of the Divine miracle in that He prophesied the location where the colt He would ride into the city would be found. (1-11)

When Christ saw a fig tree afar off having leaves, He went to it to pick some figs to eat. But when Jesus arrived at the tree, there was no fruit. He cursed the tree because it pictured false profession – pretending to have something it didn’t. The fig tree was a picture of Israel in Scripture and another truth told here is the curse of God upon the hypocrisy of Israel. Christ prophesied by action the withering away of Israel as a nation. (12-14)

Jesus went into Jerusalem and there He saw a blasphemous abuse of the Temple. The traders of sacrificial animals and birds and the men who changed money were making a mockery of the atonement for sins. They were actually short-changing people who came to the Temple. They had turned it into a “den of thieves.” Out of righteous anger, Christ drove the traders and money changers out of the Temple. (15-19)

In the morning, Jesus and the disciples went out and passed by the cursed fig tree which by then had withered away. Peter commented on the tree and Christ used the opportunity to teach on the prayer of faith. This portion of Scripture on prayer balanced with other Scriptures give us a clear picture of the power of prayer. (20-24)

Forgiveness is another important pre-requisite to powerful prayer. God is not pleased with a prayer offered from an unforgiving spirit. We will not be forgiven unless we forgive others. (25-26)

The chief priests, scribes and elders constantly tried to trick Jesus into saying something that would turn the people against Him. When they asked Jesus about His authority to teach, preach and work miracles, He threw a question back at them about the authority of John the Baptist. Was John’s authority of God or men? If the priests and scribes had answered “God,” then Jesus would probably have asked them why they did not repent at his preaching. If the priests and scribes answered “of men,” the people would have been angered since they believed John was a prophet of God. When the priests and scribes refused to answer, so did Christ. (27-33)

Next Time

We will look at preaching applications from Chapter Eleven of the Gospel of Mark in the next part of our special series.

[Thank you for reading these teaching notes from 45 years ago. My prayer is they will be a blessing to you and your ministry.]