Summary: When we allow the Holy Spirit in our lives, nothing can stop us. We have a power that can overcome everything the devil throws in our way-even the opposition of our earthly family. That power is the awesome power of God!

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Have you ever done something that made other people wonder if you have lost your mind? If so, you can probably understand what is going on in Mark 3:20-35. This takes place early in Jesus’ ministry when word of hid teachings and miracles is starting to spread. Jesus’ earthly family and friends didn’t understand his ministry. They didn’t understand that he was the Son of God. To the people of Nazareth, he was just the son of Mary and Joseph-earthly parents.

We are the same. Sometimes we can’t understand Jesus and his ministry. Sometimes it’s hard for us to understand who Jesus is, what he does and why he does what he does. Often we make a rash judgment about Jesus. We need to ask God what his will is for our lives. We need to ask God why he is doing what he is doing in our lives.

Because the Pharisees did not understand what Jesus was doing, they accused him of being possessed by the devil. They wanted to discredit Jesus in the eyes of the people, but their claim had one big flaw. How could the devil defeat the devil? The devil and his angels are of equal strength, so evil can’t defeat evil. A strong man can only be defeated by someone who is stronger. Since good is always stronger than evil, good will always defeat evil. Jesus is the champion of everything that is good, so he will always defeat evil.

Normally, when there is a champion of any type-sports, politics, etc. - most people will follow the champion. In other words, many people will “jump on the bandwagon”, but there will still be some opponents. There is a similar situation in this passage. By accusing Jesus of using the devil’s power to cast out demons, the Pharisees rejected the work of the Holy Spirit. They willingly rejected Christ as their Saviour because they did not want to give up their power, prestige, authority, etc. Because they chose not to believe, they refused to accept forgiveness for their sins. Refusing to accept the Holy Spirit is the only sin that cannot be forgiven-and not blasphemy as most believers would think.

How many people in our modern world have refused to accept Christ because it would mean giving up an earthly way of life that is more important to them? The list is endless, but it includes the famous and not so famous. It includes people such as actor John Belushi and singers Whitney Houston, Amy Winehouse and Michael Jackson-people whose desire for the good things of this earthly life led to their downfall and death from drug and alcohol abuse (even though Whitney Houston was raised in a strong Christian church and with a strong Christian faith).

If you are worried about sinning against the Holy Spirit, don’t be worried. The fact that you are worried means that you are likely not guilty. The fact that you are concerned means that you have a conscience that will keep you safe.

Jesus’ earthly family was concerned about his physical and mental health, but Jesus was more concerned about the spiritual health of the people he dealt with. True “family” is not a matter of biological relationship, but of kinship in obedience to God, and that kinship begins when God through his grace adopts us into his family. In a world where there is so much opposition to the Christian faith, and where our homes and families demand so much of our time, our one priority is to love one another wherever we are, and with every breath of our being.

Those who accept the Holy Spirit will do the will of God and thereby become part of the new concept of family that Jesus creates. That is, they will become part of the family of God. This is not meant to exclude our biological family unless they refuse to accept the Holy Spirit and therefore refuse to do God’s will. When we allow the Holy Spirit in our lives, nothing can stop us. We have a power that can overcome everything the devil throws in our way-even the opposition of our earthly family. That power is the awesome power of God! When we unite with fellow believers, the power is even greater.

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