Sunday, July 27, 2014

A third question - family ties (2)

A bombshell question
When Jesus' mother and brothers arrive to take charge of him, the message reaches Jesus who is surrounded by a dense crowd that his mother and brothers are outside looking for him.  They invoke the natural family ties that bind them together.  It's as though they are saying: 'We're here for you'.

The question that Jesus then asks is so extraordinary we might guess something dramatic is going to happen.  There has to be some explanation. Who are my mother and my brothers? (verse 33). It seems bizarre with his family actually outside that he should question something so basic.  We are born into families - that's a given for better or worse.  Who would think to question such a fact of life. We don't know how noisy the crowd and how far outside Jesus' family is standing.  But,  perhaps they have heard him say this too.  Isn't it deeply offensive to your own flesh and blood?  If you have children, imagine your reaction if they asked this! Doesn't it really prove that he is 'out of his mind'.

The story informs us that after this question Jesus looked at those seated in a circle around him.  We don't often get told details like that.(Actually, I wish we had more descriptions of Jesus' voice and movements, don't you!)   It seems as though Jesus is slowing the pace down. This bombshell of a question hangs in the air.  Its shock sinks in!   Probably the immediate circle may be the disciples whom he has just called in the previous verses 13-19.

Something is happening that the church should never forget.

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