Series - Trinity Gospel of Mark

The Sick Woman & the Dead Girl (Mark 5:21-43)

"Christ and the Woman with the Issue of Blood" (ca. 1565) by Paolo Veronese

This is a series about the Trinity. It explores this doctrine by brief expositions of different passages from throughout the Gospel of Mark, showing how the Trinity is the explicit and implicit teaching and assumption of Scripture.

I’m a regulatory fraud investigator for a state agency. Before that, I was a criminal investigator with the U.S. Naval Security Forces. I carry credentials which tell people who I am. Jesus had credentials, too. They proved who He is and where He comes from.

My credentials are a piece of state-issued plastic. Jesus’ credentials are His miracles. They show He is co-equal with God, “for no one can do these signs that you do, unless God is with him,” (John 3:2). And, as I forge ahead in my series on Jesus and the Trinity, the two miracles in our passage help establish this.

And when Jesus had crossed again in the boat to the other side, a great crowd gathered about him; and he was beside the sea. Then came one of the rulers of the synagogue, Jairus by name; and seeing him, he fell at his feet, and besought him, saying, “My little daughter is at the point of death. Come and lay your hands on her, so that she may be made well, and live.” And he went with him (Mark 5:21-24a).

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Jesus and the Legion of Demons (Mark 5:1-13)

This is a series about the Trinity. It explores this doctrine by brief expositions of different passages from throughout the Gospel of Mark, showing how the Trinity is the explicit and implicit teaching and assumption of Scripture.

Jesus and his disciples have finished their perilous crossing of the Sea of Galilee. There was a ferocious storm during the night. It was so bad, the men with him feared for their lives. Frantic, they woke Jesus up, probably because they were exasperated that He slept while they desperately bailed water from the boat. Jesus rebuked the wind and the waves, demonstrating His power, jurisdiction and authority over the forces of nature.

Though He had added a human nature in the incarnation, Jesus still retained all the properties of His divine nature and continued to uphold all things in creation as He lived as a man in His own creation (cf. Col 1; Heb 1).1

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Jesus Conquers the Storm (Mk 4:35-41)

This is a series about the Trinity. It goes beyond simple proof-texting, and explores this doctrine by brief expositions of selected passages from throughout the Gospel of Mark, showing how the Trinity is the explicit and implicit teaching and assumption of the Gospel writer.

Jesus has had a long day. He began by teaching the crowds from a boat, just off-shore on the Sea of Galilee. The crowds lined the shore to hear Him speak (Mk 4:1). He deliberately taught them in parables, in order to drive away those who had no “ears to hear” (Mk 4:10-12). The parables were not simply designed to be memorable. Jesus used them to filter out the elect from the non-elect; those who love Him from those who hate Him (compare Mk 4:9 with Jn 8:47).1

On that day, when evening had come, he said to them, “Let us go across to the other side.” (Mk 4:35)

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Jesus and the Strong Man (Mk 3:22-30)

The Accusation

The Pharisees charge Jesus with being demon-possessed, a tool of Satan (Mk 3:22). Mark doesn’t tell us what prompted this confrontation. The Lord left that up to Matthew, who tells us Jesus had just conducted an exorcism on a demoniac, who was blind and could not speak.

And all the people were amazed, and said, “Can this be the Son of David?” But when the Pharisees heard it they said, “It is only by Beelzebul, the prince of demons, that this man casts out demons.” (Mt 12:22)

Why did Mark not give us this background? Each writer has his own reasons for omitting or including certain excerpts. Mark isn’t interested in providing full context. His emphasis is on Jesus’ increasing isolation as the opposition against Him grows at a rapid-fire pace.

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Jesus and Power Over the Demons (Mark 3:7-19)

Read the rest of the series.

The Pharisees are seeking to kill Jesus, but the demons confess Him as the Son of God. This is a great irony of the Gospels. The leaders who ought to recognize him hate Him. The fallen angels who should hate Him bow before Him. Meanwhile, the people who should gladly receive Him ignore His message.

Power Over the Demons

Jesus withdrew with his disciples to the sea, and a great multitude from Galilee followed; also from Judea and Jerusalem and Idumea and from beyond the Jordan and from about Tyre and Sidon a great multitude, hearing all that he did, came to him (Mk 3:7-8).

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Jesus & the Sad, Angry Little Men (Mark 3:1-6)

Read the rest of the series.

This is a sad little story, because we see sad little men rejecting their great God and Savior, Jesus Christ. They have made void the word of God through their tradition (cf. Mk 7:13). In the Gospel of Mark, Jesus’ early confrontations with the Pharisees come quickly, one after the other. This particular account is where the water boils over.

Mounting Opposition

First, they questioned why Jesus shares a meal with such “worldly” and “disreputable” people (2:15-17). They don’t ask Jesus; they ask His disciples (Mk 2:16). We’re not sure why the Pharisees don’t approach Jesus directly. But we can guess, knowing ourselves, that they’re a bit tentative and unsure of themselves. Perhaps, they thought, “It’ll be better to take the indirect route and cast doubt on His credentials to His followers.”

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Heads of Grain & Holy Bread - Jesus and the Sabbath

In the Crosshairs

Jesus and the Pharisees didn’t get along well. The trouble began in Capernaum, when He told a crippled man his sins were forgiven (Mk 2:5). This was a performative act; his sins were forgiven as Jesus spoke the words. Poof! The scribes were not pleased. Blasphemy! “Who can forgive sins but God alone?” (Mk 2:6). This was the first time Jesus attracted attention from the corridors of power in Jerusalem (cf. Lk 5:17). It wasn’t a good sign.

The situation worsened after Matthew joined Jesus’ group. At a banquet at Matthew’s house, Jesus did not separate Himself from those whom the strict Pharisees considered to be “compromisers” (Mk 2:16). How could an alleged preacher of righteousness be so careless with His personal associations!? Something was not right with this man from Nazareth.

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Jesus, the Paralytic and the Trinity

Jesus Returns to Base

After John the Baptist’s arrest, Christ has spent his time in the highways, hedges and synagogues of Galilee.1 Now, He has returned to His home base in Capernaum (cf. Mt 4:13). He will not stay anonymous for long.

And when he returned to Capernaum after some days, it was reported that he was at home. And many were gathered together, so that there was no longer room for them, not even about the door; and he was preaching the word to them. (Mk 2:1-2)

Nobody knows where His “home” was. It may have been Peter’s house, or perhaps Jesus had His own residence.2 Wherever He was, the word went out and the people came. And it wasn’t just the rubberneckers; “there were Pharisees and teachers of the law sitting by, who had come from every village of Galilee and Judea and from Jerusalem” (Lk 5:17).

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