Series - Trinity Gospel of Mark

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)

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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)

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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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The Curious Case of Jesus and the Leper

The account of Jesus healing the leper appears in all three synoptic Gospels. It is a famous story. At first glance, it seems to have some bearing on Jesus’ divinity and, by extension, on the doctrine of the Trinity. It is particularly fascinating to see Mark’s account in parallel with Matthew and Luke.1 Here is the first portion of the story:

Did the Leper Worship Jesus as God?

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Jesus' Very Busy Day

Synagogue in Capernaum

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By anybody’s standard, Jesus had a very busy day (Mk 1:21-38). This passage chronicles one single day during Jesus’ early ministry. At first glance, there seems to be nothing earth-shattering here, until you step back and consider all He did during those 24 hours.1 

Consider the common objections to the doctrine of the Trinity, then remember the kind of day Jesus had:

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Jesus, Satan, Demons and the Trinity

"The Temptation of Christ," by Sandro Botticelli (Sistine Chapel)

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The Christ has been commissioned and anointed with power from the Spirit. His ministry has begun. Immediately, He enters into single combat with His own creation, the chief of all angels, Satan. As His ministry begins, we’ll examine two passages which shed light on Christ and the doctrine of the Trinity.

Jesus and Satan in the Wilderness (Mark 1:12-13)

The Spirit immediately drove him into the wilderness. He was in the wilderness forty days, enduring temptations from Satan. He was with wild animals, and angels were ministering to his needs (Mark 1:12-13).

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