The Gospel of Mark

Mark - Lesson 3D

Chapter 3:20-30

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  • Last week we dove into the laboring process, if you will, as to Jesus selecting amongst His followers, those who would become the twelve.

    • And we discussed the significance of Jesus secluding Himself in prayer in order to develop a group of men who would help Him expand the Kingdom message.

      • It would be after Jesus praying all night that He would be given the twelve that He would select.

      • And we concluded the teaching by speaking to each man selected by Christ for the work of the Kingdom program.

    • Tonight, we will explore the growing and mounting pressures of ministry that Jesus was feeling at this point.

      • But most importantly we will discuss one of the most controversial topics within Christendom and that is the matter of the “unforgivable sin”.

    • My prayer for us tonight is that we approach this issue with fresh eyes opened to the scriptures and not the whims of “social media experts” or YouTube preachers.

      • With that being said, turn with me to Mark 3:20-30.

Mark 3:20 And He *came home, and the crowd *gathered again, to such an extent that they could not even eat a meal. 
Mark 3:21 When His own people heard of this, they went out to take custody of Him; for they were saying, “He has lost His senses.” 
Mark 3:22 The scribes who came down from Jerusalem were saying, “He is possessed by Beelzebul,” and “He casts out the demons by the ruler of the demons.” 
Mark 3:23 And He called them to Himself and began speaking to them in parables, “How can Satan cast out Satan? 
Mark 3:24 If a kingdom is divided against itself, that kingdom cannot stand. 
Mark 3:25 If a house is divided against itself, that house will not be able to stand. 
Mark 3:26 If Satan has risen up against himself and is divided, he cannot stand, but he is finished! 
Mark 3:27 But no one can enter the strong man’s house and plunder his property unless he first binds the strong man, and then he will plunder his house.
Mark 3:28 “Truly I say to you, all sins shall be forgiven the sons of men, and whatever blasphemies they utter; 
Mark 3:29 but whoever blasphemes against the Holy Spirit never has forgiveness, but is guilty of an eternal sin”— 
Mark 3:30 because they were saying, “He has an unclean spirit.”
  • Let’s Pray.

  • Burden of proof plays a critical role in the law, but most importantly the success of a case.

    • Legally, it is required to present evidence to the court that proves or defeats a claim that is made against a particular individual.

      • And in other cases, the amount of proof that one has helps in achieving this goal as well.

    • But what do you do when you have provided proof after proof and verifiable evidence time and time again, but yet the proof doesn’t hold up in public.

      • Time and time again throughout Mark’s gospel account we have witnessed miracle after miracle, and healing after healing.

      • The proof is in the pudding however, for the Pharisees, that proof is not good enough.

    • They continue to find ways in which to discredit and disparage the works of Jesus.

      • As I mentioned earlier, this situation will eventually lead to what has been known throughout church history as “The unpardonable sin”.

    • This sin has caused much worry throughout churches and followers of Christ for years.

      • We begin in verses 20-21 of Mark 3. Here’s what the text reads:

Mark 3:20 And He *came home, and the crowd *gathered again, to such an extent that they could not even eat a meal. 
Mark 3:21 When His own people heard of this, they went out to take custody of Him; for they were saying, “He has lost His senses.” 
  • Mark mentions that Jesus heads back home after His time of calling the twelve to Himself in preparation for the Kingdom program.

    • We can assume from our previous teachings that Jesus’ return home is none other than His place of headquarters, Capernaum, more specifically, Peter’s home.

      • It is evident that Jesus’ ministerial demands continued to increase.

      • One indication to that fact is that the crowd was so large and in need that Jesus and His disciples “were not even able to eat a meal”.

    • However, this would not be the last time that Jesus and His disciples would be delayed in eating a meal.

      • We see another instance within the scriptures regarding an immense need from the people.

      • In Mark 6:31, Jesus visibly acknowledges the need for His disciples to rest amidst such great burdens of the people. Check out the text.

Mark 6:31 And He *said to them, “Come away by yourselves to a secluded place and rest a while.” (For there were many people coming and going, and they did not even have time to eat.)
  • Friends, understand that this type of reaction is no different from how we approach tasks we hold dear or deadlines that are fast approaching.

    • It’s like someone who is intently focused on a project deadline.

    • They lose track of time thereby missing opportunities for food and bathroom breaks, all for the sake of what is before them.

    • Someone from the outside looking in would be a bit worried or concerned to say the least.

      • I know personally, if I have not taken a break from my studies or sermon prep my wife has to remind me to drink water or take a mental break.

      • Because I too can become consumed in what I am doing.

    • And in the same way, this particular group was very concerned for Jesus’ well-being.

      • Verse 21 says “When His own people heard of this, they went out to take custody of Him.”

      • We’re going to get to this term “custody” momentarily, but I first want to examine who is coming to see about Jesus.

    • If we were to look at the phrase “His own people” in v.21, it’s one word in Greek.

      • It is the word autos which transliterated means relative, someone related by marriage.

      • Now, let’s look at what Jesus’ relatives are coming to do upon arrival.

    • It’s important to note that Mark’s wording here does not allude to a simple visitation or check in from family.

      • The sense of the language here regarding “taking custody” of Jesus by His family was literally an attempt to restrain Him from Himself.

    • Apparently, towards the end of verse 21, the text lets us know that Jesus’ relatives were saying “He has lost His senses”.

      • Somehow Jesus’ ministry work and duties became so much that He was considered a “fanatic” by those closest to Him.

    • It cannot be possible that Jesus missing one meal, up to this point, makes his family have such an over-reaction as to restrain Him from Himself.

      • Or even for that matter suggest that He was being a fanatic.

      • If serving the Lord consistently and continually makes us a fanatic, count me in.

    • Clearly, something else, something of greater concern or urgency has prompted the response of Jesus’ family to come from Nazareth to get a hold of Him.

      • And in the same breath something is prompting Jesus in His tireless pursuit of fulfilling His mission.

      • So let’s examine the scene thus far.

    • Jesus has previously selected the twelve whom will accompany Him with this Kingdom proclamation.

      • He is continuing to be pressed by the crowds because of their great need and from what we see at v.20, the demand of His ministry did not decrease.

    • Here is the question we must ask ourselves: “Why has Jesus become more fixated on the Kingdom program at this time?”

      • We will see later on in tonight’s teaching that this generation was about to commit a sin that could not be forgiven (The unpardonable sin)

    • So as one could imagine, the pressure is mounting for Jesus, and He is becoming extremely intent on the mission even before His own physical needs.

      • We can now gather that Jesus’ family’s expression of Him “losing His mind” was a complete misinterpretation of His actions.

      • What seemed as a fanatical response in continuing his ministerial mission was actually a buildup for yet another Kirotic moment.

      • Jesus doesn’t overreact! And as His mission furthers, those around Him will not truly understand what His coming will cost Him.

    • A question still lingers in the background: “What is the true cause of the concern from Jesus’ family and relatives regarding Jesus?”

      • Jesus missing one meal, up to this point could not have possibly caused such concern. Something must have occurred!

    • Something much greater has prompted this response and this urgency.

      • And we can see from Matthew’s gospel what caused the concern.

      • Check out Matthew 12:22

Matthew 12:22 Then a demon-possessed man who was blind and mute was brought to Jesus, and He healed him, so that the mute man spoke and saw.
  • Matthew’s gospel seems to fill in a time gap whereas Mark’s gospel seems to skip over the nuances of this event. (We will cover more later in this teaching)

    • It would be through Jesus expelling a demon, that had caused a man to become blind and mute, that created even more attention towards His work and mission.

    • Expelling the demonic spirit inhabiting a blind and mute man established the second Messianic Miracle.

    • So picture, if you will, what is being placed before us so far.

      • Jesus is continuing in His healing crusades, meeting the ministerial needs of others.

      • All the while, His focus on the ministry becomes more and more intense.

      • Then after the selection of the twelve, He expels a demon from a blind and mute man.

    • Understand that the expelling of a blind and mute demon-possessed man has never been done before by any Jewish exorcist.

      • This news, once again, would gain the attention of the scribes, Pharisees, and other religious leaders around the region.

    • We can assume that these events have caused private concern for Jesus’ family while at the very same time, causes much celebration for the religious leaders to publicly humiliate Jesus.

      • You could almost hear Jesus’ unbelieving relatives at that time saying, “Can Jesus ever just be normal?!”

      • “We can never be left alone without being the brunt end of these ‘Jesus Jokes’”.

    • So Jesus’ family is going to make their way to where He is because, to them, the more He ministers, the more trouble seems to come His way.

      • This should be encouraging for us as believers because we too will experience suffering and ridicule for what we believe.

    • What we can witness from Jesus’ relatives in their reaction to Jesus’ behavior and work is that His own relatives did not believe He was Messiah.

      • We see this in John 7:5

John 7:5 For not even His brothers were believing in Him.
  • So having this brief glimpse into Matthew’s gospel helps the reader understand why the response of the scribes in Jerusalem was what it was in v.22-23.

    • Check out v.22-23 with me.

Mark 3:22 The scribes who came down from Jerusalem were saying, “He is possessed by Beelzebul,” and “He casts out the demons by the ruler of the demons.” 
Mark 3:23 And He called them to Himself and began speaking to them in parables, “How can Satan cast out Satan? 
  • Although Mark’s account does not provide us with proper context for what seems to be a gap in information, as mentioned earlier, Matthew fills in the missing pieces.

    • We will see that Matthew 12:22-37 provides the backdrop that Mark seems to omit.

      • So as we walk through the next few verses in Mark 3:20-30, we will rely heavily upon Matthew’s account.

    • Mark states that the “scribes came down from Jerusalem.”

      • One question that arises here is why? “Why do the scribes descend down to the regions of the Galilee?”

    • Obviously, whatever has moved them from their self-righteous throne to the lowlands of the Galilee, there must be something of great interest stirring.

      • And indeed, there is something juicy happening!

    • Remember, Jesus at this point has performed yet another Messianic miracle which was expelling a demonic spirit in a blind and mute man.

      • We will go into detail in a few regarding this Messianic miracle in the coming verses.

      • But for now, know that this Messianic miracle has grasped the attention of the religious leaders.

    • This will officially move their investigation from an internal private matter to a more public forum.

      • Here’s the big question: “What do you do when you have verified worthy claims that Jesus is who He claims to be, but yet your very authority and influence would be in jeopardy?”

      • You do the next best thing: You control the narrative and create a scene that discredits the threatening opponent.

    • So it is upon the arrival by the scribes on the scene in the Galilee that they begin to pile on more “concerning and slanderous” allegations on top of what Jesus’ family has already been informed about.

      • If you look at the word “saying” in the first line of v.22, that word is in the imperfect tense.

      • This suggest that the scribes’ comments and allegations they were speaking were more of a “campaign of vilification” towards the Victor Himself, Jesus Christ.

    • This further confirms the scribes’ agenda which was to sabotage and discredit Jesus’ character and ministry.

      • To attempt to put the icing on the cake regarding Jesus’ hyper focused scene of events and performing of the second Messianic miracle, the scribes credited this charge to Beelzebul.

    • A question that comes to mind which should be obvious in observation is: “Who is Beelzebul?”

      • Without hesitation, Jesus answers our question, in a way, in v.23. Check out the text again:

Mark 3:23 And He called them to Himself and began speaking to them in parables, “How can Satan cast out Satan? 
  • Beelzebul was considered the god of Ekron and later as a satanic entity in the Hebrew scriptures.

    • We first see a form of Beelzebul’s name in 2 Kings 1:2-3.

    • Beelzebul’s name is oftentimes synonymous with a name of a Semitic deity tied to an agent of Satan, and in most cases, Satan himself.

      • The religious leaders were attempting to correlate Jesus’ expelling demons and fanatic behavior to somehow Him being demon-possessed.

      • And at worst practicing witchcraft.

    • This accusation from the religious leaders was not just an attack against His very person, but a direct attack against the outworking power of God through the Holy Spirit.

      • And Jesus begins to peel back the layers of the scribes’ accusations and publicly addresses their off-base statements.

      • And His rebuttal begins with “How can Satan cast out Satan?”

    • It is here that Mark tells us that Jesus begins the use of parables.

      • As we will see more closely in Mark 4, the use of parables will serve to succinctly identify outsiders (rejected) versus insiders (drawn by God).

      • But most importantly it will be a defining moment for Jesus’ teaching ministry which we will see later on.

    • We see a bit of an explanation regarding the use of parables in Mark 4:10-12. Check out the text.

Mark 4:10 As soon as He was alone, His followers, along with the twelve, began asking Him about the parables. 
Mark 4:11 And He was saying to them, “To you has been given the mystery of the kingdom of God, but those who are outside get everything in parables, 
Mark 4:12 so that while seeing, they may see and not perceive, and while hearing, they may hear and not understand, otherwise they might return and be forgiven.”
  • Let’s keep moving. Here is what v.24-26 says.

Mark 3:24 If a kingdom is divided against itself, that kingdom cannot stand. 
Mark 3:25 If a house is divided against itself, that house will not be able to stand. 
Mark 3:26 If Satan has risen up against himself and is divided, he cannot stand, but he is finished! 
  • In order to truly appreciate the weightiness of what Jesus is saying here, we need to understand the nature of this miracle and its significance.

    • Remember, this situation is dealing specifically with matters of exorcism.

      • Just as a brief recap, the first Messianic miracle was the healing of a Jewish leper which no man could do but Messiah, Himself.

      • Now, Jesus has casted out a demonic spirit from a man that has made this man, blind and mute.

    • A question that we could ask at this time regarding the miracle is: “What made this miracle of casting out a demon so different than Jesus’ other exorcism?”

      • It was not uncommon for Jewish exorcists to cast out demons.

      • These men were trained to do this for a living. Which begs the question,again, what’s so different with this situation?

    • During this time period, Jewish exorcisms were provided with “specific rituals that had distinct steps.”

      • One of the steps required was “establishing communication with the demon who would have to use the vocal cords of the person under their control.”

    • In Twelftree’s book, “Jesus the Exorcist”, he explains that many extra-biblical material, such as, “The Testament of Solomon” discusses the engagement between the exorcist and the demon.

      • For your hearing (or reading), here is an excerpt from the Testament of Solomon:

“Solomon asks a demon its name and he answers; “If I tell you his name, I place not only myself in chains, but also the legion of demons under me.”
  • So, by providing a name, the Jewish exorcist had the ability to cast out the demonic spirit.

    • But remember the demonic spirit that Jesus is expelling has caused the man to become blind and mute.

    • So there could be no communication established between Jesus and the demon-possessed man.

      • However, the only one that could have been able to accomplish this was none other than Messiah Himself.

      • Friends, might I suggest this is why the people in Matthew’s gospel are so amazed.

      • Matthew 12:22-23 gives us their exact responses:

Matthew 12:22 Then a demon-possessed man who was blind and mute was brought to Jesus, and He healed him, so that the mute man spoke and saw. 
Matthew 12:23 All the crowds were amazed, and were saying, “This man cannot be the Son of David, can he?”
  • The people’s response, in amazement, ends in a question. That question is: “This man cannot be the Son of David, can He?”

    • If you have followed the ministry for any span of time, you know that the title “Son of David” is a Messianic title.

    • It pointed to the reality that God’s promised Messiah would come through the line of David and here it is; the minds of the people are percolating.

    • Can you begin to see it? People are beginning to connect the dots as to who Jesus is and what He truly represents, in a sense.

      • Then we have the religious leaders who carry notable influence in their own right yet are threatened by the very sight and presence of Messiah.

      • They, like the rest of the people, both hear and see that what Jesus is doing is unlike what they have seen before.

      • You cannot unsee or unhear what Jesus has been doing consistently throughout the region.

      • However, the religious leaders refuse to accept it, and their primary aim will be to persuade the people away from their promised Messiah.

    • Although there were some that could evidently see the truth, they would not answer for themselves what they had witnessed. (See Dr. Fruchtenbaum’s works)

      • Reason being is during biblical times, the Jewish people operated under a “leadership complex”.

      • Simply meaning, whatever the leadership says, we will follow.

    • As you can imagine this had to be extremely frustrating to one extreme for Jesus yet at the same time their response was not unexpected.

      • And I believe this speaks to the point we made earlier in our study, we come to know Jesus personally not collectively.

      • Meaning, Jesus draws you personally into a relationship with Him. Not through your friends, family members, or loved ones.

      • Jesus is hand picking you out of the bunch and you must come to the grips of His claims for yourself, not your neighbor.

    • So if the Pharisees choose to reject Jesus as Messiah, because of His failure to accept Pharisaic Judaism, then the majority of the Jewish people would follow suit.

      • Luke’s account in Luke 23:2 provides the Pharisees’ eventual verdict after the proof they are shown from Jesus’ ministry. Check it out:

Luke 23:2 And they began to accuse Him, saying, “We found this man misleading our nation and forbidding to pay taxes to Caesar, and saying that He Himself is Christ, a King.”
  • So with understanding this Messianic miracle and the Pharisees’ accusations, we can now dive into the point that Jesus is making in His parable.

    • Here is the parable once again for our hearing:

Mark 3:24 If a kingdom is divided against itself, that kingdom cannot stand. 
Mark 3:25 If a house is divided against itself, that house will not be able to stand. 
Mark 3:26 If Satan has risen up against himself and is divided, he cannot stand, but he is finished! 
  • At this point, the Pharisees have charged Jesus with sorcery.

    • And the religious leaders’ explanation for Jesus’ great authority over the blind and mute demonic spirit was said to have come from Satan.

    • This can potentially explain the orthodox Jewish hesitation towards them seeing Jesus as their Messiah.

      • The Rabbinic leader’s portrait of Jesus as a magician is stated to be ingrained into Jewish thinking to this day, according to one Messianic Jewish scholar.

      • The claim is that somehow Jesus was attempting to lead the Jewish people astray and away from their true God and the Torah.

    • Check out a brief excerpt from Robert E. Van Voorst from his book, “Jesus Outside the New Testament” based on the Toledot Yeshu:

“The main Jewish tradition originated in the first century, carried through Rabbinic Tradition and adapted for popular use in the Toledot Yeshu, is that Jesus is a magician and deceiver. He founded and led a movement that tried to lead Israel away from the one true God and his Torah. He used deception and magic in miracles worked by an alliance with evil.”
  • So Rabbinical teaching pushed their narrative of lies and deceit and to make Jesus out to be this crazy man for the sake of keeping their false religion.

    • Check out, through this parable, how Jesus defends Himself.

    • If you notice, there is one word that is consistently repeated throughout these 3 verses.

      • That word is divided.

    • The first defense Jesus makes is: If what the religious leaders are saying is true, then that means Satan is divided against himself.

      • We see this statement fully realized in Matthew 12:25-26.

Matthew 12:25 And knowing their thoughts Jesus said to them, “Any kingdom divided against itself is laid waste; and any city or house divided against itself will not stand. 
Matthew 12:26 If Satan casts out Satan, he is divided against himself; how then will his kingdom stand?
  • Jesus uses these metaphors as a means to demonstrate that there are two kingdoms at play here.

    • The two kingdoms in this parable are that of the Kingdom of God and that of Satan and the kingdom of darkness.

    • It would make no sense for one particular kingdom to fight in and within itself.

      • It’s like two opposing sports teams representing their respective teams with their respective jerseys on.

      • However one of the teammates on the team score points for the opposing team.

    • It makes no sense to do that! And this is the point that Jesus is making.

      • Jesus is showing how inconsistent and bogus the logic of the pharisaical leaders was.

    • In one breath, the religious leaders are claiming Jesus is using Satan’s powers to cast out demons, but yet the Pharisees cast demonic spirits out as well.

      • So by who’s power are they doing such things?

    • The reality was that the rabbis of that day taught that “exorcism was only possible by God Himself.”

      • To further expound on this, Jesus never challenged rabbinic exorcism nor its effectiveness.

      • And we should find that quite interesting because what this ultimately does is exposes the weakness of the religious leaders’ arguments about Jesus.

      • Therefore, it would strengthen Jesus’ position and make His defense plain to see.

      • However, as we discovered, the “leadership complex” that the Jewish people had at that time superseded the truth even if it meant Jesus’ death in the end.

    • Here is the truth of the matter: Jesus expelled this demonic spirit by the Power of the Holy Spirit.

      • The same Holy Spirit that descended upon Him like a dove at His baptism is the same Spirit that empowers Him to expel demonic spirits.

      • The question on the table for those that were witnessing this would be: “Who will you believe?”

    • The proof is in the pudding and Jesus always proves to be the Victorious One in every battle and circumstance.

      • Check out how Jesus accomplishes this, look at verse 27.

Mark 3:27  But no one can enter the strong man’s house and plunder his property unless he first binds the strong man, and then he will plunder his house.
  • What was Jesus speaking about here?!

    • Simply put, Jesus is refuting the accusations of the religious leaders by properly expressing in words what is truly fact.

      • Within this analogy we must understand that Satan is the strong man and “His house is the realm of sin, sickness, demon possession, and death within this world”.

    • Jesus is the One who comes into Satan’s home (this broken world) and Jesus plunders Satan’s possessions by freeing men and women from His curse.

      • Therefore we can confidently conclude that Jesus is actively binding Satan up now and will, in the end, bind Him up for all eternity.

    • The Jewish people in that time missed the opportunity to witness the Kingdom come in that time because of their refusal to see the truth and receive their Messiah.

      • What a moment of blessing completely missed all because hardened hearts of men fueled them more than receiving their King.

      • However, what a blessing it has been for the Gentiles in the Church age.

    • This reality cost that generation greatly, and we will see why in our last 3 verses. Check out v.28-30.

Mark 3:28  “Truly I say to you, all sins shall be forgiven the sons of men, and whatever blasphemies they utter; 
Mark 3:29 but whoever blasphemes against the Holy Spirit never has forgiveness, but is guilty of an eternal sin”— 
Mark 3:30 because they were saying, “He has an unclean spirit.”
  • We now arrive to one of the most debated and most concerning pieces of scripture in scripture.

    • And that deals with what is known as “Blaspheming against the Holy Spirit” (The unforgivable sin).

      • Much confusion comes about regarding the unforgivable sin and it is my prayer that clarity will be made known today by the Spirit of God.

    • In order to truly understand this “unpardonable sin” we must first define terms in proper context.

      • So let’s begin by looking at the term blasphemy.

    • Blasphemy means to slander, profane, or revile God’s word, work, and/or character.

      • And it becomes clear in verse 28b that blasphemy falls under the category of sin.

      • And according to the passage here blasphemy can be forgiven.

      • So the sins of humanity, personally, can be forgiven through Christ and His atoning work on the cross that forgives sins (past, present, and future).

    • Throughout the scriptures we see the means of forgiveness clearly, for example, check out Colossians 2:13-14.

Colossians 2:13 When you were dead in your transgressions and the uncircumcision of your flesh, He made you alive together with Him, having forgiven us all our transgressions, 
Colossians 2:14 having canceled out the certificate of debt consisting of decrees against us, which was hostile to us; and He has taken it out of the way, having nailed it to the cross.
  • If that wasn’t enough, knowing that we have been forgiven and that there is no back door “gotcha” moment, Paul states this in Romans 8:1:

Romans 8:1 Therefore there is now no condemnation for those who are in Christ Jesus.
  • So if sins of the Children of God can be forgiven, then what is this particular sin that stands in a category all by itself?

    • The unforgivable sin that Jesus speaks to here is the “blasphemy of the Holy Spirit”.

    • And this term is what Jesus uses as it relates to Israel’s (national) rejection of Jesus as their King and Messiah.

    • Israel blasphemed the Spirit’s testimony at work in Jesus’ life and ministry.

    • Israel rejecting its King resulted in the King rescinding the offer of the Messianic Kingdom to that generation of Israel.

      • At this point, Jesus has demonstrated who He was by miraculous works and means to His people, and they saw Him face to face yet they did not accept Him.

      • Literally, if Israel’s leaders would have accepted Jesus as Messiah, the Kingdom would have come immediately!

    • With all of the evidence and proof before their eyes, they missed the opportunity.

      • And unfortunately for that generation in Israel, their sin of refusing Jesus face to face, as King, was unforgivable.

    • This is why part b of verse 29 says this: “but whosoever blasphemes against the Holy Spirit never has forgiveness but is guilty of an eternal sin.

      • Matthew’s account mentions the timetable of this sin in this way:

Matthew 12:32 Whoever speaks a word against the Son of Man, it shall be forgiven him; but whoever speaks against the Holy Spirit, it shall not be forgiven him, either in this age or in the age to come.
  • It’s like someone telling you, “I have an offer that you can’t refuse.”

    • And they lay that offer down and provide you with facts, proof, and valid information which all points to their offer.

    • However, because you believe that what you have is much better, you miss out on the opportunity of a lifetime.

    • It’s at that point that the individual tells you, “Once I leave, the offer is no good at this point”

      • And with the utmost confidence, you look at them square in the eyes and say, “I’m good. No, thank you.”

    • This was the case for Israel, (nationally), however, by God’s grace, there would be a remnant reserved that would have their eyes open to see Messiah and move beyond the blindness of Israel’s leaders and that generation.

      • Although the nation would face judgment for their rejection of Messiah and the Kingdom, those in whom the Father was calling (remnant) would still be drawn in the midst of that judgement for the nation.

    • As we mentioned earlier in our teaching in verse 23, here is where Jesus’ use of parables will commence in His teachings.

      • The reason being is because up to this point Jesus was demonstrating who He was by the Power of the Spirit.

      • However, now that Israel was rejecting the offer to accept Messiah and the the Kingdom, it resulted in Jesus’ methods of teaching to change.

    • From this moment on, Jesus would begin to speak in Parables.

      • His message would become more secretive and less apparent, and the disciples would eventually pick up on the change.

      • Check out Matthew 13:10-16

Matthew 13:10 And the disciples came and said to Him, “Why do You speak to them in parables?” 
Matthew 13:11 Jesus answered them, “To you it has been granted to know the mysteries of the kingdom of heaven, but to them it has not been granted. 
Matthew 13:12 For whoever has, to him more shall be given, and he will have an abundance; but whoever does not have, even what he has shall be taken away from him. 
Matthew 13:13 Therefore I speak to them in parables; because while seeing they do not see, and while hearing they do not hear, nor do they understand. 
Matthew 13:14 In their case the prophecy of Isaiah is being fulfilled, which says,
‘You will keep on hearing, but will not understand;
You will keep on seeing, but will not perceive;
Matthew 13:15 For the heart of this people has become dull,
With their ears they scarcely hear,
And they have closed their eyes,
Otherwise they would see with their eyes,
Hear with their ears,
And understand with their heart and return,
And I would heal them.’
Matthew 13:16 But blessed are your eyes, because they see; and your ears, because they hear.
  • So while Israel’s national rejection of Messiah causes a damper on their ability to experience the Kingdom then, it makes way for the Gentiles.

    • So as we wrap up tonight, I want to answer a question that some may ask; Is it possible for a believer to commit the unforgivable sin? No it’s not.

    • Why? Because the unpardonable sin deals specifically with Israel (nationally) rejecting Jesus, face to face and accusing Him of being Satan.

    • They were made aware of the truth, had seen it for themselves, but yet hardened their hearts from it.

    • This sin was a “national” sin and not a personal sin. You can breathe and rest in knowing that you as a believer have not committed the unforgivable sin.

    • You can also rest in knowing that this sin was committed by only a specific generation and no other nation or generation can commit this sin.

      • May you rest in the truth of scripture tonight and continue to seek Jesus all the more daily.

      • Let’s Pray.



  • Twelftree, Jesus the Exorcist, p.20. For further discussion on the need to name demons, see: ibid., p.22-23; and Ronald H. Isaacs, Ascending Jacob’s Ladder: Jewish Views of Angels, Demons, and Evil Spirits (Northvale, NJ: Jason Aronson, 1998)

  • Verseput, The Rejection of the Humble Messianic King, p.224

  • John D. Grassmick, “Mark,” in The Bible Knowledge Commentary: An Exposition of the Scriptures, ed. J. F. Walvoord and R. B. Zuck, vol. 2 (Wheaton, IL: Victor Books, 1985), 117.