Thursday, June 13, 2013

A new family

 Mark 3:31-35

Jesus rejected his family when they came to get him. He said that he had a new family. (Mark 3:31-35) Is this a contradiction of the commandment to honor our parents?

Elsewhere in the Gospels Jesus said, “Anyone who loves their father or mother more than me is not worthy of me; anyone who loves their son or daughter more than me is not worthy of me. (Matthew 10:37)

Jesus is not telling us that family is no longer important. While he was dying on the cross Jesus made provision for his mother's care. The Bible tells us that if a Christian will not care for his own family he is worse than an unbeliever.

In this particular case, Jesus' family came to rescue him. They wanted him to come back home and stop aggravating the religious authorities. Jesus tells us that following God's will is greater than blood ties. His family is all who follow Him.

The gospel spread quickly through the cities of the Middle East and Southern Europe among the slaves and servants who had been separated from their families. Their old social ties had been cut and, in Jesus, they had found a new family. Paul would tell them, “Consequently, you are no longer foreigners and strangers, but fellow citizens with God’s people and also members of His household... (Ephesians 2:19)”

Onesimus, who was once a slave was now a brother to his former owner, Philemon.

In America it is common for families to be spread across the world by career choices. Some, through a variety of circumstances, find themselves with no family to call upon. Like First Century Christians they are separated from their support group. The church offers an opportunity to be a second family through small groups and Sunday School. Reach out to someone and invite them into your group.

Whoever does God’s will is my brother and sister and mother.
Mark 3:35

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