Rev. Dr. V Kurian Thomas Valiyaparambil
St. Mark 3: 20-30
Gospel Reading: St. Mark 3: 20-30
Theme: "Whoever blasphemes against the Holy Spirit will never be forgiven; they are guilty of an eternal sin. (Mark 3:29)
Gospel Reading: "20 Then Jesus entered a house, and again a crowd gathered, so that he and his disciples were not even able to eat. 21 When his family heard about this, they went to take charge of him, for they said, He is out of his mind.
22 And the teachers of the law who came down from Jerusalem said, He is possessed by Beelzebub! By the prince of demons he is driving out demons. 23 So Jesus called them over to him and began to speak to them in parables: How can Satan drive out Satan? 24 If a kingdom is divided against itself, that kingdom cannot stand. 25 If a house is divided against itself, that house cannot stand. 26 And if Satan opposes himself and is divided, he cannot stand; his end has come. 27 In fact, no one can enter a strong man's house without first tying him up. Then he can plunder the strong man's house. 28 Truly I tell you, people can be forgiven all their sins and every slander they utter, 29 but whoever blasphemes against the Holy Spirit will never be forgiven; they are guilty of an eternal sin. 30 He said this because they were saying, He has an impure spirit. (Mark 3:20-30)
Message: From the very beginning of Jesus' ministry, the tone was set correctly for what is and what is not an accepted behavior. Jesus had done so many wonderful things during his life time, such as, healing the sick, forgiving the sinners, casting out demons and so forth.
In today's gospel we read that Jesus had an encounter with a group of Jewish scholars who came down from Jerusalem. They came to dispute Jesus' authority. Instead of avoiding them and the issue, Jesus meets with them head-on. In this confrontation, Jesus states something that is a clear warning to everyone who would think of him differently. It is a warning for those who dared to diminish and neutralize his work. Jesus calls their accusation, "SIN". Jesus defines what that sin is.
The scholars had seen and witnessed the miracles Jesus had performed. They could not deny what Jesus had been doing because the evidence was there for anyone to ignore. The Jewish scholars did not bother to compliment Jesus for the good deeds. Instead they decided to attack him for who he claimed to be. They charged Jesus as an agent of Satan and that Jesus was driving out demons by using the power of Satan. To add to the insult, they held him in contempt and were not afraid to show it.
Jesus was never afraid to meet with his attackers. Jesus forced a confrontation with them. They were busy spreading their malicious claim in order to cause doubts on Jesus.
Jesus asked, "How can we be together?" Jesus would further say, "We are mortal enemies, To say we are in union is a sin against God." Jesus had told in no uncertain terms that they were WRONG, and that he had met Satan in the Temptations and that Jesus - not Satan - won.
Jesus warned them that when they accused him by calling God and Satan as being together, that they were on a dangerous territory.
Jesus warned them about their thinking process. Sin starts in the mind. If we allow it to enter, it could stay and grow. It will then be hardened. Sin then will be so easy to act on. It will ultimately lead them to commit sins for which there would never be any cleansing possible. Jesus told them that no one should compare the mercies of God to Satan, but that was what the Jewish scholars have been trying to do. They saw the evidence of the mercies of God, but continued to think differently. Their inner mind was getting darkened and Jesus told them to stop the sin before it took control of them.
Jesus warned them of holding on to that thought. It is one thing to have a thought enter the mind and it is another thing to allow it to remain and feed it. Not only were they nurturing the sin of wrongful thinking, they were also practicing it. They allowed it to grow. They allowed that thought to overtake them and act on it.
Too many people today are willing to accommodate the world around us by throwing away God's Commandments and allow them into thinking until they cannot differentiate between God and Satan. The world has mixed the truth of God with its modernity. This type of thinking will be an insult to the Holy Spirit. Blasphemes against the Holy Spirit will never be forgiven. They are guilty of eternal sin. Jesus sets the truth for all times.
Sermons and Bible Commentaries for the 7th Sunday after Pentecost
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