Lesson 15

The Gospel According to Mark

World English Bible translation

 Today's Scripture

3:31 His mother and his brothers came, and standing outside, they sent to him, calling him. 3:32 A multitude was sitting around him, and they told him, "Behold, your mother, your brothers, and your sisters are outside looking for you."

3:33 He answered them, "Who are my mother and my brothers?" 3:34 Looking around at those who sat around him, he said, "Behold, my mother and my brothers! 3:35 For whoever may do the will of God, the same is my brother, and my sister, and mother."


Today's Lesson 

The instance of Today's Scripture flows from what occurred in the passage that came right before it. The scribes had come down from Jerusalem to investigate the ministry of Jesus. The multitude was pressing on Jesus such that He could not go anywhere in the city without being mobbed. Unclean spirits were coming up to Jesus and throwing themselves at His feet and crying out. In all this confusion, someone sent for the family of Jesus and the scene that met them was shocking to them.


They had apparently come to bring Jesus home. Verse 21 says, "When his friends heard it, they went out to seize him: for they said, "'He is insane.'" Though the King James agrees with the World English Bible here in translating this passage "his friends," most modern translations use the words, "his family" or "his kinsmen." We know of Mary, His mother and at least two of His brothers, James and Jude. If these are His kinsmen or His family, then this passage may be saying that they came to bring Him away. They saw only the confusion and the unusual nature of all that was going on.


So, His family came to get Him in the house where He was teaching. The multitude had gathered around Him so that they could not even get into the house where Jesus was. They waited outside and sent a message inside for Him. The people that were in the house with Jesus told Him, "Behold, your mother, your brothers, and your sisters are outside looking for you."


When Jesus heard that His family was outside calling for Him, He used this situation to teach those that were with Him. He asked the people that were with Him, "Who are my mothers and my brothers?" For Jesus, His family were those who do the will of God. His kinsman were those that believed in His message.


There is nothing in this passage to suggest that Jesus disrespected His family in any way. There is every indication in scripture that Jesus honored His mother. We do know that His brother, James, did not believe that He was the Messiah before His death but that soon after, James became influential in the church. By everyone's account, James was one of the most faithful and honest men of His generation. As for the mother of Jesus, Mary, scripture clearly teaches that by the time of His death she believed Jesus and took an active role in the early church.


So, what we have here is a story that passes along a message for the sake of future believers. Jesus is speaking through Peter and Mark to tell those who would follow that men and women who believed in His message were to Him brother and sister and mother. The family of Christ is composed of those who follow the will of God and the will of God is to believe on the one that He sent, Jesus Christ. When we acknowledge Jesus as our Lord and Savior, we are adopted into the family of God and are made heirs along with Christ.


Who are your brothers and your sisters? Are you a member of the true family of God?


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