Mark 3

1 Another time when Jesus went into a synagogue, a man with a crippled hand was there.
2 Some people watched Jesus closely to see if he would heal the man on the Sabbath day so they could accuse him.
3 Jesus said to the man with the crippled hand, "Stand up here in the middle of everyone."
4 Then Jesus asked the people, "Which is lawful on the Sabbath day: to do good or to do evil, to save a life or to kill?" But they said nothing to answer him.
5 Jesus was angry as he looked at the people, and he felt very sad because they were stubborn. Then he said to the man, "Hold out your hand." The man held out his hand and it was healed.
6 Then the Pharisees left and began making plans with the Herodiansn about a way to kill Jesus.
7 Jesus left with his followers for the lake, and a large crowd from Galilee followed him.
8 Also many people came from Judea, from Jerusalem, from Idumea, from the lands across the Jordan River, and from the area of Tyre and Sidon. When they heard what Jesus was doing, many people came to him.
9 When Jesus saw the crowds, he told his followers to get a boat ready for him to keep people from crowding against him.
10 He had healed many people, so all the sick were pushing toward him to touch him.
11 When evil spirits saw Jesus, they fell down before him and shouted, "You are the Son of God!"
12 But Jesus strongly warned them not to tell who he was.
13 Then Jesus went up on a mountain and called to him the men he wanted, and they came to him.
14 Jesus chose twelve men and called them apostles. He wanted them to be with him, and he wanted to send them out to preach
15 and to have the authority to force demons out of people.
16 These are the twelve men he chose: Simon (Jesus named him Peter),
17 James and John, the sons of Zebedee (Jesus named them Boanerges, which means "Sons of Thunder"),
18 Andrew, Philip, Bartholomew, Matthew, Thomas, James the son of Alphaeus, Thaddaeus, Simon the Zealot,
19 and Judas Iscariot, who later turned against Jesus.
20 Then Jesus went home, but again a crowd gathered. There were so many people that Jesus and his followers could not eat.
21 When his family heard this, they went to get him because they thought he was out of his mind.
22 But the teachers of the law from Jerusalem were saying, "Beelzebul is living inside him! He uses power from the ruler of demons to force demons out of people."
23 So Jesus called the people together and taught them with stories. He said, "Satan will not force himself out of people.
24 A kingdom that is divided cannot continue,
25 and a family that is divided cannot continue.
26 And if Satan is against himself and fights against his own people, he cannot continue; that is the end of Satan.
27 No one can enter a strong person's house and steal his things unless he first ties up the strong person. Then he can steal things from the house.
28 I tell you the truth, all sins that people do and all the things people say against God can be forgiven.
29 But anyone who speaks against the Holy Spirit will never be forgiven; he is guilty of a sin that continues forever."
30 Jesus said this because the teachers of the law said that he had an evil spirit inside him.
31 Then Jesus' mother and brothers arrived. Standing outside, they sent someone in to tell him to come out.
32 Many people were sitting around Jesus, and they said to him, "Your mother and brothers are waiting for you outside."
33 Jesus asked, "Who are my mother and my brothers?"
34 Then he looked at those sitting around him and said, "Here are my mother and my brothers!
35 My true brother and sister and mother are those who do what God wants."

Mark 3 Commentary

Chapter 3

The withered hand healed. (1-5) The people resort to Christ. (6-12) The apostles called. (13-21) The blasphemy of the scribes. (22-30) Christ's relatives. (31-35)

Verses 1-5 This man's case was piteous; he had a withered hand, which disabled him from working for his living; and those that are so, are the most proper objects of charity. Let those be helped that cannot help themselves. But stubborn infidels, when they can say nothing against the truth, yet will not yield. We hear what is said amiss, and see what is done amiss; but Christ looks at the root of bitterness in the heart, the blindness and hardness of that, and is grieved. Let hard-hearted sinners tremble to think of the anger with which he will look upon them shortly, when the day of his wrath comes. The great healing day now is the sabbath, and the healing place the house of prayer; but the healing power is of Christ. The gospel command is like that recorded here: though our hands are withered, yet, if we will not stretch them out, it is our own fault that we are not healed. But if we are healed, Christ, his power and grace, must have all the glory.

Verses 6-12 All our sicknesses and calamities spring from the anger of God against our sins. Their removal, or the making them blessings to us, was purchased to us by the blood of Christ. But the plagues and diseases of our souls, of our hearts, are chiefly to be dreaded; and He can heal them also by a word. May more and more press to Christ to be healed of these plagues, and to be delivered from the enemies of their souls.

Verses 13-21 Christ calls whom he will; for his grace is his own. He had called the apostles to separate themselves from the crowd, and they came unto him. He now gave them power to heal sicknesses, and to cast out devils. May the Lord send forth more and more of those who have been with him, and have learned of him to preach his gospel, to be instruments in his blessed work. Those whose hearts are enlarged in the work of God, can easily bear with what is inconvenient to themselves, and will rather lose a meal than an opportunity of doing good. Those who go on with zeal in the work of God, must expect hinderances, both from the hatred of enemies, and mistaken affections of friends, and need to guard against both.

Verses 22-30 It was plain that the doctrine of Christ had a direct tendency to break the devil's power; and it was as plain, that casting of him out of the bodies of people, confirmed that doctrine; therefore Satan could not support such a design. Christ gave an awful warning against speaking such dangerous words. It is true the gospel promises, because Christ has purchased, forgiveness for the greatest sins and sinners; but by this sin, they would oppose the gifts of the Holy Ghost after Christ's ascension. Such is the enmity of the heart, that unconverted men pretend believers are doing Satan's work, when sinners are brought to repentance and newness of life.

Verses 31-35 It is a great comfort to all true Christians, that they are dearer to Christ than mother, brother, or sister as such, merely as relations in the flesh would have been, even had they been holy. Blessed be God, this great and gracious privilege is ours even now; for though Christ's bodily presence cannot be enjoyed by us, his spiritual presence is not denied us.

Mark 3 Commentaries