Mark 1:16–45 Discussion Guide

  • Main Point of the Passage: As news about Jesus spread throughout Galilee, people were forced to choose how to respond to Jesus’ message.
  • Main Point of the Lesson: Each person has a choice of how to respond to Jesus’ message.
  • Main Application of the Lesson: Participants will choose to believe and follow Jesus.
  • Key Verse: “Follow me,” Jesus told them, “and I will make you fish for people.” (Mark 1:17, CSB)

Discussion Questions

Smile Question: What news would make you ecstatic?

Share Question: What are the different ways people respond to Jesus?

Introduce the Passage: Each person has a choice of how to respond to Jesus’ message. In Mark 1:16–45, as news about Jesus spread throughout Galilee, people were forced to choose whether or not to believe in him. In the previous verses, Jesus summarized his message like this: “The time is fulfilled, and the kingdom of God has come near. Repent and believe the good news!” (Mark 1:15). As today’s passage begins, Jesus invites Simon and Andrew to become fishers of men by joining him in proclaiming the good news.

Study Question: As we read Mark 1:16–45, lets list all the ways Jesus “fished for men” and all the ways people responded to him.

Possible answers include:

  • Simon and Andrew left their nets and followed Jesus (v. 18)
  • James and John left their father and boat and followed Jesus (v. 20)
  • The people were astonished at Jesus’ teaching (v. 22)
  • The man with an unclean spirit cried out (v. 24)
  • The unclean spirit came out of the man (v. 26)
  • The people were amazed and spread the news about him (vv. 27–28)
  • Simon’s mother-in-law was healed and began to serve them (v. 31)
  • Crowds gathered and he healed the sick and drove out demons (vv. 32–34)
  • Everyone searched for him when he withdrew (vv. 35–37)
  • The man healed of leprosy told everyone what Jesus had done (v. 45)
  • Because the crowds were so great, Jesus could not enter a town openly (v. 45)

Connect-the-Dots Question: At this point, what do you think the disciples expected following Jesus would be like?

Count-the-Cost Question: In verse 17, Jesus told his disciples he would make them fish for people. In what sense are Christians today expected to be fishers of men?

Let’s-Do-It Question: What is something you do or could do that would make you a fisher of men?

Prayer: Father, thank you for calling us to a new life. Give us the faith we need to follow you and become fishers of men. Amen.

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