Today we see that Jesus values having women as part of His ministry plans along with the 12 disciples. Mary called Magdalene, out of whom had come seven demons, is with Jesus as He travels and preaches as are many other women “who provided for Him from their substance.” We will soon learn that Jesus will first appear to women after His resurrection and give them an important job!
When Jesus was preaching to the crowds, He cast a demon out of a man resulting in some scribes and Pharisees assuming that Jesus is doing the work of Satan. Jesus explains that it would make zero sense for Satan to cast out his own demons. He says, “But if I cast out demons by the Spirit of God, surely the kingdom of God has come upon you.” Jesus tells them that they are either with Him or against Him. Then He says the only sin that will not be forgiven is the rejection of God, who through the power of the Holy Spirit calls people to salvation.
But the scribes and Pharisees, still trying to catch Jesus in an unlawful act, ask Him to perform a sign, although He has already performed many. Instead of giving them a sign, Jesus gives them a story about Jonah being in the belly of a fish for 3 days which led to the salvation of Nineveh. Like Jonah, Jesus will be in the belly of the earth 3 days and 3 nights and then rise again, an act only God can do, so that salvation will be available for the world. Jesus’s life, death, and resurrection provides a way for us to be a part of God’s eternal family. “For whoever does the will of My Father in heaven is My brother and sister and mother.”
We end the reading with Jesus telling His first parable which is about a sower and his seed. The parable teaches that not all who hear the gospel (the Good News of Jesus Christ) will understand and believe.
1) Some seed will fall by the wayside meaning that as soon as someone hears, Satan will snatch away what was sown on their hearts.
2) The seed that falls on stony ground means that some will immediately receive the word but it will have no roots so they will not endure the tribulations of the world.
3) The seed sown among the thorns are ones that hear the word but are drawn away by the desires of the world.
4) “But there are the ones sown on good ground, those who hear, accept it, and bear fruit: some thirtyfold, some sixty, and some a hundred.” This one has eternal salvation which is evident by the fruit (Matthew 7:15-20).
Tomorrow Jesus will give us several illustrations to help us understand the kingdom of God. Keep reading.
(Luke 8:1-3, Mark 3:20-30, Matthew 12:22-45, Mark 3:31-35, Matthew 12:46-50, Luke 8:19-21, Mark 4:1-9, Matthew 13:1-9, Luke 8:4-8, Mark 4:10-20)