Mark 3- Who Is Yeshua?

Yeshua is the Most Important Man Who Ever Lived. The Most Important Man Who Ever Lived brought the world the Most Important Message, a message that must be believed for us to be reconciled to God and live forever. Everything Messiah did, everything He said, every interaction with others that has been recorded for us in the divinely inspired book of Mark, is extremely important. We want to understand as much as we can about the Most Important Man and His Most Important Message.

Another time Yeshua went into the synagogue, and a man with a shriveled hand was there. Some of them were looking for a reason to accuse Yeshua, so they watched Him closely to see if He would heal him on the Sabbath. Yeshua said to the man with the shriveled hand, “Stand up in front of everyone.” Then Yeshua asked them, “Which is lawful on the Sabbath: to do good or to do evil, to save life or to kill?” But they remained silent. He looked around at them in anger and, deeply distressed at their stubborn hearts, said to the man, “Stretch out your hand.” He stretched it out, and his hand was completely restored. Then the Pharisees went out and began to plot with the Herodians how they might kill Yeshua.

Who is Yeshua? Someone who frequently went to synagogue, participating in the religious life of God’s people; hearing the Word of God read and taught; praising and praying to His Heavenly Father. Yeshua is Someone who wants Messianic Jews and Christians to follow His example and be actively involved in His Community – participating in the religious life of the people of God; hearing the Word of God read and taught; praying and singing songs of praise to Him and His Father.

Who is Yeshua? Someone whom God the Father used to heal a man with a shriveled hand. And that’s so hopeful because humanity is like that man. Our hands are shriveled. We are unable to do what we need to do with our full abilities. Our strength is limited. We can’t serve the Lord the way we should. But, God the Father can, even now, help us use our spiritual hand the way we should. He can help us do and serve and act the way we should. And a day is coming when the redeemed remnant of Israel and the nations will be made whole and we will be able to completely do what God designed us to do with our entire capacities, and we will serve the Lord that way forever.

Who is Yeshua? Someone who knew that many of the spiritual leaders of the set-apart people were wrong about healing on the Sabbath being a violation of the Sabbath. The very nature of the Sabbath is about bringing rest, so healing a man with a shriveled hand is consistent with the nature of the Sabbath. And, supernaturally healing someone on the Sabbath was not really work; and even if involved an exertion of energy, human needs take precedence over ritual laws – even as one as important as the Sabbath.

Who is Yeshua? The Supreme Religious Authority of the Chosen People. Someone who knew where the Jewish people were in error, and who tried to correct those errors. And, He knows where we are in error, and will try to correct our errors – by having us read His Word; by having someone challenge us; by having the events of life confront us so that we will reassess where we are at and make the changes we need to. So, we want to be responsive to the Wonderful Counselor’s ongoing ministry of correction – which is so beneficial to us.

Who is Yeshua? Someone who gets angry when we are wrong and will not receive correction. Someone who gets deeply distressed by our stubborn hearts. And, since He is the Son of God and the one and only Savior, and the One who will judge us on the Day of Judgment, we don’t want to distress Him or get Him angry with us, do we? So, let’s not be so arrogant as to think we can never be wrong about anything. Let’s humble ourselves and be very open to His correction.

Who is Yeshua? Someone who, early in His ministry, was rejected by the majority of the Pharisees and Herodians, who represented the world’s political and religious authorities. And He is still rejected by the majority of the world’s political and religious leaders – which means that we will be too. We need to expect that. We need to expect that the powerful people of this world will treat us with contempt, as despised minority, and from time to time will try to kills us. So, we need to endure the hatred that the world’s leaders have for Messiah, and for us, and go to Him, where He is, outside the camp.

Yeshua withdrew with His disciples to the lake, and a large crowd from Galilee followed. When they heard about all He was doing, many people came to Him from Judea, Jerusalem, Idumea, and the regions across the Jordan and around Tyre and Sidon. Because of the crowd He told His disciples to have a small boat ready for Him, to keep the people from crowding Him. For He had healed many, so that those with diseases were pushing forward to touch Him. Whenever the impure spirits saw Him, they fell down before Him and cried out, “You are the Son of God.” But He gave them strict orders not to tell others about Him.

Who is Yeshua? Someone who was making a tremendous impact on the holy nation. Jewish people from the north to the south, and even beyond our borders were drawn to the young rabbi who was teaching us great things and miraculously healing our physical diseases and our spiritual diseases by exorcizing demons.

And He is Someone who has continued and will continue to make a tremendous impact on Israel and the nations. Millions of Jewish people and people from the nations have experienced His touch and have been healed of their physical and spiritual diseases. And a day is coming when He will completely heal us, and the entire universe, from all of our physical and spirtual diseases.

Who is Yeshua? Someone known by the fallen angels to be the Son of God – sharing equality of divine nature with God the Father, yet distinct from God the Father as a Person, and subject to God the Father in authority as a human son is subject to the authority of his earthly father.

Yeshua is someone who didn’t want the fallen spirits testifying on His behalf. He wanted nothing do to with the demons – and neither should we.

Who is Yeshua? Someone who knew that He would leave this world after completing His mission; that He would die and rise from the dead; that He would ascend to Heaven and sit at the right hand of God the Father, ruling the universe; that He would need holy Jewish men to carry on His mission of world redemption. So, from among His many followers, He chose twelve to be especially close to Him so that He could equip them to lead His Community and carry on His mission of world evangelism when He left this world.

Yeshua went up on a mountainside and called to Him those He wanted, and they came to Him. He appointed twelve that they might be with Him and that He might send them out to preach and to have authority to drive out demons. These are the twelve He appointed: Simon (to whom He gave the name Peter), James son of Zebedee and his brother John (to them He gave the name Boanerges, which means “sons of thunder”), Andrew, Philip, Bartholomew, Matthew, Thomas, James son of Alphaeus, Thaddaeus, Simon the Zealot and Judas Iscariot, who betrayed Him.

Who is Yeshua? The Seed of the Woman who will undo all the damage caused by the Satanic Adversary in the Garden of Eden. The Messiah. The ultimate prophet, priest, king and Savior. The Greatest Human Being Of All Time. The Perfect Man. The Son of Man and the Son of God. Immanuel – God with us. Someone who will transform the world. Someone incredibly important. Someone who should have been understood and loved by everyone, especially by His family and by the religious leaders of the holy people – whose mission as a people, in part, was to bring the Messiah into the world. And yet, Yeshua was misunderstood by His family and attacked by most of the religious leaders of the Chosen People.

Then Yeshua entered a house, and again a crowd gathered, so that He and His disciples were not even able to eat. Yeshua was immensely popular among many of the ordinary Jewish people. They wanted to see the young Rabbi’s miracles and hear His great teachings. Because of His popularity, things were getting so busy for Yeshua and His disciples that normal activities, like eating, were getting interrupted. Mark gives us two responses to Yeshua’s teachings and miracles and the tremendous impact it caused – the response of His family and the response of some religious leaders: When His family heard about this, they went to take charge of Him, for they said, “He is out of His mind.” And the Torah Teachers who came down from Jerusalem said, “He is possessed by Beelzebul! By the prince of demons He is driving out demons.”

Yeshua’s family looked at Yeshua’s activities and popularity and concluded that He was crazy. He was losing touch with reality and was a danger to Himself.  He needed to be brought home.

The religious experts analyzed the situation and concluded that the young carpenter from Nazareth was not crazy. He was something far worse – a false prophet who was getting His powers from the Satanic Adversary. They didn’t doubt that miracles were happening though Yeshua, but they concluded that His spiritual empowerment was coming from the dark side. Baal-zevuv, the Lord of the Flies; flies being nasty creatures that feed on filth and dead things; Satan, the head of the impure spirits had taken possession of the Nazarene and was enabling Him to do miracles and cast out demons.

These Torah teachers believed that what was happening with Yeshua was similar to what happened with Pharaoh’s magicians who opposed Moses, who were able to do miracles and remove demons with their dark, secret arts. Of course, that couldn’t be farther from the truth. So Yeshua called them over to Him and began to speak to them in parables: “How can Satan drive out Satan? If a kingdom is divided against itself, that kingdom cannot stand. If a house is divided against itself, that house cannot stand. And if Satan opposes himself and is divided, he cannot stand; his end has come. Yeshua argued that civil war leads to the ruin of a nation. If the Satanic Adversary was the source of Yeshua’s power to cast out demons, it meant that a ruinous civil war was going on among the kingdom of the demons and their dominion over mankind must soon come to an end – and that would soon be verified. Is that what the experts in Torah were claiming was about to happen? And end to the kingdom of darkness? No. Therefor the Torah teachers were wrong. Very wrong. There was no way that Yeshua was in league with the Devil.

Then Yeshua told them what was really happening: 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. The demons are strong, much stronger than we are – but the Messiah is even stronger! Yeshua was able to exorcize impure spirits because He had greater authority than Satan and the demons. That’s the reason why He was able to remove human beings from their control.

Yeshua knew that He was the Messiah, the Son of God and the Savior who was on a rescue mission to free humanity from the kingdom of darkness. Anyone who saw Him doing miracles that helped people and remove people from the control of the demons; anyone who saw that and who then came to the conclusion that Yeshua was able to do these great things because He was empowered by Satan, was in a very, very dark place, so dark a spiritual whole that he helped dig for himself that it would be impossible to be rescued from. Truly I tell you, people can be forgiven all their sins and every slander they utter, but whoever blasphemes against the Holy Spirit will never be forgiven; they are guilty of an eternal sin.” He said this because they were saying, “He has an impure spirit.” God is very gracious and forgiving. He wants to forgive us. He wants to redeem us. He will forgive all kinds of terrible sins and blasphemies – bad things spoken about Him and things closely associated with Him. But, He will not forgive those who see clear demonstrations of Yeshua’s reality, and then conclude that Yeshua is evil.

Who is Yeshua? Someone who is able to forgive virtually anyone for anything – except for the person who takes a good look at Him and who He is and what He has done and concludes He is part of the Kingdom of darkness.

So, that was Yeshua’s response to the first group, the religious experts who saw His miracles. Now we come to Yeshua’s response to the second group – His family who were aware of His activities and popularity and concluded that He was losing touch with reality and wanted to bring Yeshua home. Then Yeshua’ mother and brothers arrived. Standing outside, they sent someone in to call Him. A crowd was sitting around Him, and they told Him, “Your mother and brothers are outside looking for You.” “Who are My mother and My brothers?” He asked. Then He looked at those seated in a circle around Him and said, “Here are My mother and My brothers! Whoever does God’s will is My brother and sister and mother.” There is no exaltation of Mary here! There is no Mary-worship here!

Instead of going along with the misguided analysis of His family and their foolish plan of taking Him home with them and ending His amazing ministry, Yeshua used His family’s arrival to teach His followers that He values our loyalty and commitment to do God’s will more than family. Who is Yeshua? Someone highly values the will of God; who always put God the Father’s will above His own; who prayed: Father, not My will, but Your will be done – even if it meant something awful for Him. Someone who, like Him, wants us to choose to do what God wants in every situation.

When we sit around Yeshua, indicating that He is our Rabbi and we are His students; when we make a commitment to do the will of God – and what God wants most of all from us is that we understand that Yeshua is the Messiah and transfer our loyalties to Him – then we become Yeshua’s family. We are very closely connected to Him. We develop a close personal relationship to Him like that of brothers and sisters, parents and children; a relationship of mutual love and support and sharing of life. Who is Yeshua? Someone who values family relationships, but who also puts spiritual family ahead of physical family; who values spiritual relationships before family relationships – as close and precious as family relationship can be.

Yeshua is Someone who considers Christians and Messianic Jews to be His mishpacha – family. May God so work in each one of us that we become valued members of His family and help others become members of His family by telling them the Good News about Messiah, and teaching them and doing good things for them.

Who Is Yeshua? Someone Who Frequently Went To Synagogue; Someone Whom God The Father Used to Heal a Man With A Shriveled Hand; Someone Who Knew That Many Of The Spiritual Leaders Of The Set-Apart People Were Wrong About Healing On The Sabbath Being A Violation Of The Sabbath; Someone Who Gets Angry When We Are Wrong and Will Not Receive Correction; Someone Who Gets Deeply Distressed By Our Stubborn Hearts; Someone Who Was Rejected By the World’s Political And Religious Authorities; Someone Who Was Making a Tremendous Impact on the Holy Nation; Someone Known By The Fallen Angels To Be The Son Of God; Someone Who Knew That He Would Leave This World And Who Chose Twelve Jewish Men To Lead His Community And Carry On His Mission of World Evangelism; Someone Who Should Have Been Understood and Loved By His Family And By The Religious Leaders Of The Holy People – But Wasn’t; Someone Who Is Stronger Than The Demons; Someone Who Is Able To Forgive Virtually Anyone For Anything – Except For The Person Who Takes A Good Look At Him And Concludes He Is Part Of The Kingdom Of Darkness; Someone Who Puts Spiritual Family Ahead Of Physical Family; Someone Who Considers Christians and Messianic Jews To Be His Family; Someone Who Wants Us to Help the Jewish People And The Peoples Of The Nations To Become Members Of His Family.

May the Lord so work in us that Yeshua is to us everything He can and should be, and that we are everything that we can and should be. Amayn? Amayn!