Mislabeling Jesus

Photo by Rodolfo Clix: https://www.pexels.com/photo/silhouette-image-of-person-praying-1615776/

Please turn with me in your Bibles to Mark chapter 3.

This world has lost its mind
and Satan is Driving The Bus

In 1970 the State of California passed The “California Endangered Species Act”, which protects certain plants and animals species. Section 45 of that Act defines fish as “mollusk, crustaceans, invertebrate, amphibians”. On May 31, 2022, California’s 3rd District Court of Appeals declared that – since bees are invertebrate – that bees are in fact fish, and are a protected species under this act. Though I understand the intent is to protects bees (and I’m all for protecting those little pollinators), to relabel “fish” as “bees” makes absolutely no sense. Or maybe it does. The Bible says:

Ephesians 6:12 (ESV) For we do not wrestle against flesh and blood, but against the rulers, against the authorities, against the cosmic powers over this present darkness, against spiritual forces of evil in the heavenly places

Lucifer, also called “The Great Dragon”, “The Ancient Serpent”, “The Devil”, “Satan” (which means “the Accuser”), and “The Deceiver of the Whole World” (see Revelation 12:9) is constantly at work in this world, twisting and relabeling truth so as to increase the power of darkness.

Satan’s game is confusion. Just today I passed a rainbow colored flag with the words, “Love Always Wins” in the middle of it. Love does always win – but only love as God defines love wins. The devil is famous for twisting God’s truth. After all, it was He who told Adam, “Did God actually say, ‘You shall not eat of any tree in the garden’? You will not surely die. God knows that when you eat of the forbidden tree your eyes will be opened, and you will be like God, knowing good and evil.” (Genesis 3:1-5).

In other news, people are leaving folded dollar bills on the ground in Giles County, Tennessee. If you see one, don’t pick it up. The Sheriff’s Department said that people are lacing the bills with Fentanyl and Methamphetamine. Why? So you can pick it up, and get hooked on these drugs. They can be absorbed through the skin. Satan is driving the bus! Are you at Mark 3?

Mark 3:1-2 And He {Jesus} entered again into the synagogue {the “sunagoge” or gathering of Jews at Capernaum}; and there was a man there which had a withered hand. 2 And they {the Pharisees and Scribes} watched Him, whether He would heal {this man} on the sabbath day; that they might accuse Him.

The Pharisees Labeled Jesus As Evil, Worthy of Death

Already we see Satan’s hand at twisting the truth. The Pharisees and Scribes are at the Synagogue with Jesus not to worship God, but to find something they can use to accuse Jesus. These people have redefined religion, redefined Judaism. The Great or Primary Commandment of the Law (Matthew 22:37; Mark 12:29-30; Deuteronomy 6:5; 10:12; 30:6) is

Matthew 22:37 (ESV) … You shall love the Lord your God with all your heart and with all your soul and with all your mind.

The second pillar of the Law is:

Matthew 22:39 (ESV) … You shall love your neighbor as yourself ..

Jesus said On these two commandments depend all the Law and the Prophets” (Matthew 22:40). That is, if you were to take the Law of God and condense it, these two commandments are the foundation upon which the Law rests. God’s faith is relational, not ritual. This unnamed man with the withered hand is suffering. If the Scribes and Pharisees were in the same position, they would want to be healed – even on the Sabbath Day. Redefining religion, they make it more ritualistic than relational. The Psalmist knew this, and said You, O God, do not delight in sacrifice … you do not take pleasure in burnt offerings” (Psalm 51:16). God wants a relationship with us, with His people. He wants us to be in union with Him, loving Him and others.

When Jesus healed this man, the Bible says:

Mark 3:6 … the Pharisees went forth, and straightway took counsel with the Herodians against Him, how they might destroy Him.

The Pharisees (the religious) and the Herodians (the political) wanted to destroy Jesus. This is the Greek ἀπόλλυμι apóllymi, {pronounced ap-ol’-loo-mee}, which means “to destroy, to render lifeless”. They wanted to murder Jesus. But this is no surprise that the Herodians wanted to murder Jesus, for when Jesus was born “Herod sought to kill {apóllymi} the young Jesus” (Matthew 2:13). Herod and his followers, along with the Pharisees and Scribes saw Jesus as the enemy. Throwing the Law of God away, they plotted to murder Him – but cloaked their sinfulness as “for the good of Israel”.

The Pharisees and Herodians saw Jesus as a nuisance, but the crowds saw Jesus another way.

Mark 3:7-10 But Jesus withdrew Himself with His disciples to the sea: and a great multitude from Galilee followed Him, and from Judaea, 8 And from Jerusalem, and from Idumaea, and from beyond Jordan; and they about Tyre and Sidon, a great multitude, when they had heard what great things he did, came unto him. 9 And He spake to His disciples, that a small ship should wait on Him because of the multitude, lest they should throng Him. 10 For He had healed many; insomuch that they pressed upon Him for to touch Him, as many as had plagues.

The Crowds Labeled Jesus As “A Miracle Man”

Word went out from the Synagogue that Jesus healed this man with the withered hand … and the crowds took over. Jesus came to preach the Gospel of the Kingdom:

Repent, for the Kingdom of Heaven is at hand” (John 3:2)
“Repent, for the Kingdom of Heaven is at hand” (Matthew 4:17)
“the kingdom of God is at hand; repent and believe in the Gospel.”
(Mark 1:15)

Jesus Christ, the Son of God, came to this earth to win souls to the Kingdom of God. Yet because people sought Him for healing, He was swamped by suffering and hungering people. They pursued Jesus, so much so that He went out into the wilderness. Jesus got on a ship, and moved out to the Sea of Galilee. The people pursued Him. Jesus went up into the Mountains, and the people chased Him.

The crowds loved the MIRACLES of Jesus,
but not the MESSAGE.

What is interesting is that the crowds mislabeled Jesus, but not the demons. The demons knew Jesus!

Mark 3:11 And unclean spirits, when they saw Him, fell down before Him {an attitude of worship}, and cried, saying, Thou art the Son of God.

The fallen angels knew Who Jesus was. When Jesus was in the “country of the Gergesenes” the demons cried out upon seeing Jesus, What have you to do with us, O Son of God? Have you come here to torment us before the time?” (Matthew 8:29). The demons know Jesus. Satan knows Jesus. Dr. Ligon Duncan of Reformed Theological Seminary preached :

The first time the term “Son of God” is recorded in the Gospel of Matthew, it comes from the lips of Satan himself. It is in the temptation in Matthew chapter 4 , verses 3 and 6, where, Satan himself tempts Christ using the term applied to him as “Son of God.” Matthew does not record that to cast into doubt whether the Lord Jesus Christ is the Son of God, but to point out to you that even Satan knows the Lord Jesus Christ is the Son of God. There are very many enlightened people today who will suggest to you that is like believing a fairy tale, to believe the Lord Jesus Christ is the Son of God. In the Bible, only humans are stupid enough to deny that Jesus Christ is the Son of God. Even the demons in the Bible acknowledge that the Lord Jesus Christ is indeed the divine Son of God.”

The crowds got overwhelmingly out of control, so much so that Jesus began to heal people and then tell them to not testify or tell others about the healing:

Mark 3:12 And {Jesus} straightly charged them that they should not make him known.

Don’t tell anybody that I healed you”, Jesus told them. But people don’t listen. Once healed, they told others about Jesus the Healer. Jesus goes up into a mountain to get away from the crowds. He cannot share the Gospel for the noise of the multitude. There are no “sound” rooms. There are no microphones, nor speakers on the walls. There are no Power Point screens, nor hymnals. There is just Jesus, with all the limitations that the human body has. Jesus cannot speak above the noise of the crowds – and people need to hear the Gospel.

People need to know what the demons know,
that Jesus is the Son of God.

Jesus goes up on a mountain, and chooses 12 Apostles. The crowd follows Him. To alleviate the crowds, Jesus gives His Apostles power to heal:

Mark 3:14-15 And {Jesus} ordained twelve, that they should be with Him, and that He might send them forth to preach, 15 And to have power to heal sicknesses, and to cast out devils:

The Apostles were to go forth and preach the Gospel of the Kingdom, and to heal the sick, and cast out demons. Jesus gives this power to each and every Apostle – including Judas Iscariot who will betray Him (Mark 3:19).

Jesus next travels to Simon Peter’s home. At this home we’re told that Jesus gains another two new labels.

Jesus Is Either Crazy, Or Demon Possessed

Mark 3:20-22 And the multitude cometh together again, so that they could not so much as eat bread. 21 And when his friends heard of it, they went out to lay hold on him: for they said, He is beside himself. 22 And the scribes which came down from Jerusalem said, He hath Beelzebub, and by the prince of the devils casteth he out devils.

The demons know Jesus as the Son of God, but Jesus’ friends believe that Jesus is crazy. The word translated friends is the Greek παρά pará, {pronounced par-ah’}, which literally means “those nearby”. Those who were closest to Jesus thought He had lost His mind. The Apostle said, “For even His own brothers did not believe in Him” (John 7:5). We read later in our text:

Mark 3:31 There came then His brethren and His mother, and, standing without, sent unto Him, calling Him.

This is the “Rescue Committee”, come to save Jesus from His folly. Don’t Jesus know that He is inciting a riot? Don’t Jesus know that the Pharisees and the Herodians are plotting His death? We love Jesus, and don’t want Him hurt. So we want to step in, to intervene, to shut that Boy up before He gets Himself into a mess we can’t get Him out of.

Then you have the scribes which came down from Jerusalem. They followed Jesus to Capernaum with the intent of defaming Him. The scribes are Bible scholars, and when they spoke, they spoke with authority.

Jesus’ family thought Jesus was “Out of His Mind”.
The Scribes thought Jesus was just Demon Possessed:
Out of His Body. The Light’s on, but Jesus isn’t home.

Jesus hasn’t had time to eat anything, the press of the crowd is so great. But Jesus now calls His Apostles, and opens the door of Peter’s home in Capernaum. Jesus speaks a series of parables. Jesus always spoke in parables when He was giving information to His followers, but hiding spiritual truths from unbelievers. Jesus said:

Matthew 13:13 (ESV) This is why I speak to them {the lost} in parables, because seeing they do not see, and hearing they do not hear, nor do they understand.

The lost world cannot understand the deeper truths of the Kingdom of God. They see Jesus healing, and chase Him as a Healer. Jesus is much more than a Healer. The lost world misunderstands Jesus. He hath Beelzebub, and by the prince of the devils casteth He out devils. Jesus is crazy, or He is demon possessed. Jesus replies to these charges with three simple but similar parables:

Mark 3:24-26 And if a kingdom be divided against itself, that kingdom cannot stand.

25 And if a house be divided against itself, that house cannot stand.

26 And if Satan rise up against himself, and be divided, he cannot stand, but hath an end.

Jesus Christ Is The Son Of God’s Kingdom,
The Head Of The House Of Christ,
The Sender Of God’s Holy Spirit

Jesus Christ came preaching The kingdom of God, not “The Kingdom of Satan”. Jesus said, I must preach the kingdom of God to the other cities also, because for this purpose I have been sent” (Luke 4:43, NKJV). Jesus did not come to this earth to just give temporal healing. We are all dying creatures, broken creatures. Jesus came to this earth as the Son of God, bidding us to believe on Him, to receive Him as Lord and Savior. He is the King of Kings and Lord of Lords. Healing is a part of Jesus’ Kingdom. “Jesus sent His Apostles to preach the Kingdom of God AND to heal the sick” (Luke 9:2). Jesus Christ called people into His Kingdom through repentance and belief in the good news of Christ. “Repent, and believe in the Gospel” (Mark 1:14-15).

Salvation comes by receiving Jesus Christ as THE King of the kingdom of God. We are to REPENT, to turn from self and worldliness, and to turn TO Jesus as our Prophet, Priest, and King. We are to live our lives to please Him, not ourselves.

Jesus cast out demons because He is establishing the Kingdom of God, not the kingdom of Satan. Those who have received Jesus Christ as Lord and Savior are a part of His Kingdom, a Kingdom that shall never end.

Jesus came preaching the house of Christ. When people were saved under the Old Covenant, they were considered of the house of Moses”. The Pharisees and Scribes are of the house of Moses”. They are focused on the rituals, the

rite of circumcision,
ritual of animal sacrifice
rules of clean and unclean animals
requirements of special feasts and sabbaths

Those who are saved are not of the house of Moses”, but are under the New Covenant. We are of the house of Christ. We are saved by faith in Jesus. We are saved because we KNOW Jesus. We have a RELATIONSHIP of LOVE with Jesus. The Scripture says:

Hebrews 3:4-6 For every house is builded by some man; but he that built all things is God. 5 And Moses verily was faithful in all his house, as a servant, for a testimony of those things which were to be spoken after; 6 But Christ as a Son over his own house; whose house are we, if we hold fast the confidence and the rejoicing of the hope firm unto the end.

Moses was a servant unto God. The House God built through Moses was the House of Servants. But Jesus Christ is THE SON OF GOD. The House that Jesus presides over is not a House of Servants, but a House of Sons and Daughters. We are the House of Christ, “if we hold fast the confidence and the rejoicing of the hope firm unto the end. Our hope is not based on our strength, or our abilities to keep the rituals. Our hope is in Christ Jesus. Our love is to Jesus. Our completion is not in our ability to keep the Law of God flawlessly, but that our trust and love is in Jesus. The Apostle said:

Colossians 2:10-11, 13-14, 16-17 And ye are complete in Him, which is the Head of all principality and power: 11 In Whom also ye are circumcised with the circumcision made without hands, in putting off the body of the sins of the flesh by the circumcision of Christ: … 13 And you, being dead in your sins and the uncircumcision of your flesh, hath He quickened together with him, having forgiven you all trespasses; 14 Blotting out the handwriting of ordinances that was against us, which was contrary to us, and took it out of the way, nailing it to his cross; … 16 Let no man therefore judge you in meat, or in drink, or in respect of an holy day, or of the new moon, or of the sabbath days: 17 Which are a shadow of things to come; but the body is of Christ.

When you receive Jesus Christ as He truly is – our Lord and Savior – God the Holy Spirit enters your life and effects a change in you. Jesus cast out devils not by Beelzebub, the prince of demons, but with the Holy Spirit of God. Once you receive Jesus Christ as Lord and Savior, you begin to follow Him in love. Do you know why I love Jesus? Heed this next parable:

Mark 3:27 No man can enter into a strong man’s house, and spoil his goods, except he will first bind the strong man; and then he will spoil his house.

This is a very simple parable, but on that is often misunderstood. The strong man’s house is the life that has not received Jesus Christ as Lord and Savior. Lucifer, also called “The Great Dragon”, “The Ancient Serpent”, “The Devil”, “Satan” (which means “the Accuser”), and “The Deceiver of the Whole World” (see Revelation 12:9) is constantly at work in this world, twisting and relabeling truth so as to increase the power of darkness. The Devil is the strong man, and no one can enter the strong man’s house unless Someone stronger enter that house first and bind the strong man.

Jesus is the One Who – accompanied with the Holy Spirit of God – enters the strong man’s house. Jesus is stronger than the devil. He is stronger than evil.

Jesus Christ is God’s invading force. He and the Holy Spirit work together to bring believers into the House of Christ and the Kingdom of God. Those whom God saves, God will sanctify. Those whom God saves, He will change their hearts, writing His Law in their heart. We who have received Jesus Christ as Lord and Savior are under a New Covenant. God says:

Hebrews 10:16-17 (ESV) “This is the covenant that I will make with them after those days, declares the Lord: I will put my laws on their hearts, and write them on their minds,” 17 then he adds, “I will remember their sins and their lawless deeds no more.”

Pastor John Piper said:

Hebrews is teaching that, when we are born again, God gives us a new heart and a new spirit, and the result is that the law of God written in Scripture is no longer offensive to us. We are no longer hostile to it like Paul says in Romans 8:7. We are not hostile to the word of God, but rather, we are submissive. We delight to do God’s commandments. It doesn’t mean that we know them all by heart, because they are written on our hearts. It doesn’t mean that. It means that, when we read them in the word, the inclination to do them is in our hearts by the Holy Spirit. This is a great work of the Holy Spirit, purchased by the blood of Christ called the new covenant.”

When the Scribes attributed Jesus’ work to that of Beelzebub, the Prince of Demons, Jesus warned them. He said:

Mark 3:28-30 Verily I say unto you, All sins shall be forgiven unto the sons of men, and blasphemies wherewith soever they shall blaspheme: 29 But he that shall blaspheme against the Holy Ghost hath never forgiveness, but is in danger of eternal damnation. 30 Because they said, He hath an unclean spirit.

What damns a soul to hell? Rejection of the call of Christ. To turn away from the call that God is putting your hearts right now, to reject Jesus by mislabeling Him as Evil, the partner of Beelzebub, or the Miracle Man, will only bring you condemnation. You need Jesus. You need Him Who gave His life for you. You need to receive Him. Confess with your mouth “Jesus is Lord” and believe in your heart that God raised Him from the grave, and you SHALL be saved. May God touch your hearts with His Word! Amen and Amen!

About bibleteacherorg

A searching Pastor, I am looking for a people who love the Lord and love one another. Daily I pray for the Church. Most of what the world sees today is not the Church, but clubs pretending to be the Church. God is calling to Himself a people willing to be righteous, not self righteous, serving not served. I am called to pastor God's people, those who want to change the world by willingly and willfully following Jesus Christ. Only God is able to change the world, and we must follow His Christ. He is able! Praise His Name! Come quickly Lord Jesus!
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