Wednesday, 20 November 2013

Mark 3:20-35 - A spot of bother

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Mark describes how Jesus deals with those who think he's utterly lost it. First his family think it's time to take him in hand, and then the religious leaders decide he must be possessed. He declares them both to be wrong.

His mother and brothers want to take him home for his own good. They're concerned about his sanity and his safety, but he declares that his family consists of those who are following him and doing the will of the Father.

The religious authorities are not concerned for him in the slightest way. They're far more concerned about the challenge to their own authority. They believe Jesus is throwing out evil spirits by the power of a more powerful evil spirit. In a way this makes good sense because there are hierarchies in the spiritual realm; both angelic and demonic forces are inherently hierarchical. This is particularly clear of the demonic where there is always a strong power at the top. But believing the Holy Spirit to be evil comes from a dangerously confused mind. And Jesus tells them plainly that such an attitude cannot be forgiven.

We need to understand that we follow a Jesus who owes no allegience to either the world or to the forces of darkness. He refuses to be pinned down by either. If we are going to follow him he will lead us into all the truth, and he says that the truth will set us free. We will be as free from domination as Jesus is, but it will demand our total focus on him. [Tweet it!] And, just like him, this will make us an affront to worldly people who would tame us or control us.

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