† IMMANUEL’S E-MESSENGER †
Thursday, June 14, 2012
Mark 3:33-35 And he answered them, “Who are my mother and my brothers?”…”Here are my mother and my brothers! For whoever does the will of God, he is my brother and sister and mother.”
This is the second time in chapter 3 that Jesus’ family tries to pull him from the crowds that were gathering around him. They may have been concerned with his health, if he was eating and resting enough. They may have been concerned about what they thought his responsibilities might have been aside from his teaching and ministering to people. The scribes from Jerusalem tried to tell others that Jesus was possessed by Satan (v. 22ff) because he wasn’t conforming to their traditions. Whether his family or those who opposed him, many were concerned with earthly things and associations. Jesus was breaking the established and expected mold in order to reach the hearts and souls of those thirsting for the Gospel.
Satan loves to put guilt on people. He does it in society, in the family, in the church, in the workplace. Wherever he sees an opening he seizes it. Keeping up with the Joneses is far more than having a similar car, gadget, or the kids engaged in the same activities. Here Jesus is teaching what makes the family of believers. Each person is different and has different abilities, interests, resources and the like. The one thing that brings the body of Christ together is hearing and following the will of God.
Jesus tells his father’s will, “…that everyone who looks on the Son and believes in him should have eternal life, and I will raise him up on the last day,” [John 6:40]. God’s word, the Gospel of Jesus Christ brings each hearer into life together with all saints of all times. In this life together is the promise of the resurrection to eternal life for all believers on the last day. Due to sin and sinful natures Satan continues to persuade wherever and whenever he can and some may follow his trap. But God’s promises in Jesus Christ remain the same to all and gather them together simply by his grace alone through faith in Jesus Christ alone, not the worldly drawn up expectations and preferences.
Prayer: Lord, thank you for the privilege of being included in Your eternal family. Keep us in this faith and life forever. Amen.
(Prayer from Lutheran Study Bible, ©2009, CPH.)
(Devotion by Pastor Richard Mau of Immanuel Lutheran Church, Des Plaines, IL)