Summary: A careful study of Mark chapter Three
Once again the crowds became a problem to Christ. Some came to see the miracles rather than to hear the word. Some came because of their need for healing. Some came just to see what all the hubbub was about.
In the 1960’s a campy television of Batman came along. In a feature-length version, Batman is on the waterfront and discovers a bomb. Frantically he begins seeking for a place to allow the bomb to safely detonate. Everywhere he looks there are people. He goes from building to building and fails to find a place to toss the bomb. He looks over the pier and sees boats floating below. Finally in frustration he utters the comic phrase “Some days you just can’t get rid of a bomb.” People everywhere can be a problem.
Some days, Jesus just couldn’t get away from crowds. One of the factors that made it difficult for him to get away was that he saw their needs were great. In compassion, there were those he knew needed healing. He knew that they needed to hear the word.
But also, he felt the human need for rest and felt the need to recharge his batteries. Spiritual conflict (dealing with demons, etc.) will take its toll from more than just our supply of spiritual strength.
3:9 - 12
Christ warned the unclean spirits not to make him known. Why? He wanted the Holy Spirit to reveal him, not unholy spirits. They were trying to thwart his ministry, not further it.
Note that the Unholy Spirits saw him for who he was! They saw his holiness, but it didn’t bring about a change, they did not repent.
QUALITY TIME TEACHING! Jesus prepared his disciples for the ministry that they were to enter into.
Note the order of disciples-- Peter, James and John are at the top because they are part of the inner circle. (Andrew, Peter’s brother is down the list). Note Judas is at the end.
Simon is called the zealot. A member of a right-wing group dedicated to overthrowing the Roman government.
The last name Iscariot has several interpretations. One of them is that it means that he came from Kerioth. This would make him the only true Judean (rather than a Galilean) of the group. Some believe that the name Iscariot is a derivative from the Latin word sicarius, which means assasin. This seems to fit well with the concept presented in the apposative (who betrayed him).
Note the main goal of Jesus’ time with the-
He wanted them to be with him!
He wanted them to be prepared to go out and preach.
He wanted them to be prepared to confront demons.
As Jesus begins preaching-ministering his family becomes concerned that he is out of his mind. They come to take him back to Nazareth (or such is their goal).
This is during a time that Jesus was using Capernaum as his home-base.
The Pharisees claimed that Christ was possessed by a demon, Beelzebub- Aramaic adaption of a false god (sometimes referred to as the God of Ekron) thought to be the prince of the dead. This had come to be applied (in Jesus’ day and our own) to Satan, further confirmed when Jesus responds as if they are speaking of Satan.
It was obvious to the Pharisees that Christ was a man of supernatural power, but the problem was that they were unwilling to admit that his power came from God. There is little doubt that these men KNEW that Christ came from God. (See John 3- Nicodemus’ visit with Jesus- “we know that you are a teacher who comes from God”). This willful denial of truth that stared them in the face led to their commission of:
THE UNPARDONABLE SIN
Jesus responded that the Pharisees were committing the “unpardonable sin.”
Characteristics of the unpardonable sin:
1) DELIBERATELY attributes the work of Christ (done through the power of the Holy Spirit) to the power of Satan.
2) It is not something done in a moment of doubt-
3) Further hardens the heart of the person who commits it
4) Further alienates this person from God
The Catholics hold high to the virginity of Mary and claim that she never had relations with Joseph, her husband. The word which is translated “brothers” or “brethren” could be translated “kin” or “relatives.” However, this is a denial of Matthew 1:25 (He knew her not until...) and Luke 2:7 as well as Matthew 15:35 which actually names some of Jesus’ brothers.
James was likely the oldest brother. He became a leader in the early church and eventually wrote the book of James.
Joseph and Simon- we know really nothing about them.
Judas- most scholars believe the book of Jude was written by him.