St Mark 3 Reflections

The Gospel According to St Mark: Mark Chapter Three: Read here:

03 withered hand

‘And he entered again into the synagogue; and there was a man there which had a withered hand. And they watched him, whether he would heal him on the sabbath day; that they might accuse him’ (Mark 3:1-2).

Do we set a watch and wait to catch people in a snare? Do we delight in catching people doing something amiss so that we can find fault or accuse them, or get even somehow and elevate ourselves? Are we guilty of this?

Jesus tried to get the people to see that doing good works on the Sabbath, especially healing souls both body and spirit, is appropriate. They couldn’t rejoice in the man’s hand being made whole. They were too caught up in the trap they had set. And so they were pleased to have a reason to find accusation against Jesus in order to destroy him.

Do we realize that when we seek to harm others, we harm ourselves most?

‘And he saith unto the man which had the withered hand,

“Stand forth.”

‘And he saith unto them,

“Is it lawful to do good on the sabbath days, or to do evil? to save life, or to kill?”

‘But they held their peace.

‘And when he had looked round about on them with anger, being grieved for the hardness of their hearts, he saith unto the man,

“Stretch forth thine hand.”

‘And he stretched it out: and his hand was restored whole as the other’ (vs. 3-5).

And so the busy body ‘Pharisees went forth, and straightway took counsel with the Herodians against him, how they might destroy him’ (vs 6).

Multitudes Followed Him: Read verses 7 through 12.

‘But Jesus withdrew himself with his disciples to the sea: and a great multitude from Galilee followed him, and from Judæa, And from Jerusalem, and from Idumæa, and from beyond Jordan; and they about Tyre and Sidon, a great multitude, when they had heard what great things he did, came unto him. And he spake to his disciples, that a small ship should wait on him because of the multitude, lest they should throng him. For he had healed many; insomuch that they pressed upon him for to touch him, as many as had plagues. And unclean spirits, when they saw him, fell down before him, and cried, saying,

“Thou art the Son of God.”

‘And he straitly charged them that they should not make him known.’

Jesus Ordains Twelve to Be His Apostles: Read verses 13 through 19.

‘And he goeth up into a mountain, and calleth unto him whom he would: and they came unto him. And he ordained twelve, that they should be with him, and that he might send them forth to preach, And to have power to heal sicknesses, and to cast out devils: And Simon he surnamed Peter; And James the son of Zebedee, and John the brother of James; and he surnamed them Boanerges, which is, The sons of thunder: And Andrew, and Philip, and Bartholomew, and Matthew, and Thomas, and James the son of Alphæus, and Thaddæus, and Simon the Canaanite, And Judas Iscariot, which also betrayed him.’

Whenever Jesus wanted to be alone with God or with those He called to leadership with Him, they would seek a more secluded spot, often in a mountain. What responsibilities were given to the Twelve Apostles whom the Lord ordained? These responsibilities are placed upon those who are ordained to the Priesthood of God.

After He ordained his apostles, ‘they went into an house’ (vs. 19).

And again the multitudes were there to throng Him.

‘And the multitude cometh together again, so that they could not so much as eat bread. And when his friends heard of it, they went out to lay hold on him: for they said,

“He is beside himself”’ (vs. 20-21).

What constitutes madness in the eyes of the people? 

‘And the scribes which came down from Jerusalem said,

“He hath Beelzebub, and by the prince of the devils casteth he out devils” (vs. 22).

Jesus went on to explain that Satan doesn’t try to destroy his own work. The works which they see Jesus do are good works.

“How can Satan cast out Satan? And if a kingdom be divided against itself, that kingdom cannot stand. And if a house be divided against itself, that house cannot stand. And if Satan rise up against himself, and be divided, he cannot stand, but hath an end. ” (vs. 23-26).

Likewise, the works of God are not evil works.

Because the scribes had said,

“He hath an unclean spirit” (vs. 30),

Jesus further explained,

“Verily I say unto you, All sins shall be forgiven unto the sons of men, and blasphemies wherewith soever they shall blaspheme: But he that shall blaspheme against the Holy Ghost hath never forgiveness, but is in danger of eternal damnation” (vs. 28-29).

Once we have had a witness from the Holy Ghost, we become more accountable to uphold the truth.

While Jesus was surrounded with great multitudes of people, his mother and siblings came seeking to talk to Him. The multitude said,

“Behold, thy mother and thy brethren without seek for thee. And he answered them, saying,

“Who is my mother, or my brethren?”

‘And he looked round about on them which sat about him, and said,

“Behold my mother and my brethren! For whosoever shall do the will of God, the same is my brother, and my sister, and mother”’ (vs. 31-35).

Do we belong to the family of Christ?


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