Mark 6 Lesson


Somebody once said, “In the absence of genuine leadership, people will listen to whoever steps up to the microphone.” Whoever said that certainly was not talking about Jesus!

In Mark 6, Jesus and His apostles are working hard traveling and preaching the gospel. Jesus continues to teach His disciples. In chapter 6, He is teaching them specifically about how to handle rejection.

Like all great leaders, Jesus understood the needs of those that He was leading. In this case, Jesus understood that His apostles were exhausted. Mark writes beginning in verse 30:

“The apostles gathered together with Jesus; and they reported to Him all that they had done and taught.  And He said to them, ‘Come away by yourselves to a secluded place and rest a while.’ (For there were many people coming and going, and they did not even have time to eat.)”

Not having enough time to eat implies a terribly busy schedule. No wonder they were so tired!

Jesus, although He was the leader, was probably even more tired than His apostles. He was probably looking forward to some down time to recharge and refocus with His apostles. But that was not to be. As their boat came close to shore, it was apparent that the crowds learned about where they were heading and raced ahead of them to meet them at the shore.

For some, this could have been reason to get upset, or even angry. You can almost imagine some of them saying, “Can we not even get one night’s rest?! We came here to rest, and a crowd is already waiting for us?!” When we are overly tired, sleep and rest become more important than just about anything else in our lives, but not to Jesus. Jesus said in Mathew 20:28:

“The Son of Man did not come to be served, but to serve, and to give His life a ransom for many.”

Mark writes that when Jesus saw the large crowd, “He felt compassion for them because they were like sheep without a shepherd; and He began to teach them many things.”

As we read this important exchange, let us pay attention to the following characteristics of Jesus’ leadership:

  1. Jesus loved people. Perhaps you have heard the expression, “People do not care how much you know, until they know how much you care?” Because Jesus’ love was sincere, people were inclined to follow Him. God commands us to love one another. When put in positions of leadership, we should try to show others the kind of love Jesus showed for us.
  2. Jesus had compassion on the people that had gathered. Mark 6:34 says, “He felt compassion for them because they were like sheep without a shepherd; and He began to teach them many things.”
  3. He broke bread with them. He had time for them.

As Christians, we should always remember the perfect example of Jesus and strive to lead with love, compassion and giving of ourselves and our time.

For additional studies on the subject of leadership, click any of the links below:

Church leadership

Qualifications of church leaders

Appointing deacons

Humility and servant leadership


Dan W.

Leaders can learn a lot from the qualities of Jesus our savior. In fact, there is a book entitled "Jesus, CEO." It discusses search characteristics and how they can be applied to business leaders.


The Apostles demonstrate their faith in this verse, "And He summoned the twelve and began to send them out in pairs, and gave them authority over the unclean spirits; and He instructed them that they should take nothing for their journey, except a mere staff—no bread, no bag, no money in their belt." They trusted Jesus and went out with nothing except the clothes on their back, trusting that God would provide for them. This is in stark contrast to today's materialistic world and a good scripture to help keep us humble and grounded.