Bible Commentaries
Mark 3

Gann's Commentary on the BibleGann on the Bible

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Verse 1

Mark 3:1

See sermon "Stretch Out Your Hand"

The Galilee Gazette carried the headline: "Jesus Attends Worship Service, Load Man Receives Great Blessing".

In the Gospel we often find Jesus in the synagogues at worship. Mark 1:21; Mark 1:39; Luke 4:16; Matthew 18:20

1) Jesus attends our worship services too! What blessing did you receive? Did you come expecting one?

2) Some lament they didn’t get anything out of the service!

3) Some come to watch and critize

4) Some come to be with God and be healed - Mark 3.5

withered hand -- "atrophy", "shrinked" Luke, the physician, says it was his "right" hand.

Verse 2

Mark 3:2

they watched ... the Pharisees and scribes Luke 6:7 Some only come to worship to watch and be spectators, and to criticize.

might accuse him ... of breaking the sabbath day. 1) was this man planted there by the Pharisees themselves? 2) was he there to worship? 3) was he there seeking to be healed?

We know the Lord was compasionate, while the Pharisees just wanted to trap Him.

Lesson point: Attitude at worship is important.

Verse 3

Mark 3:3

stand forth ... "Rise and come forth" "Get up and come here" "Stand up and get in front"

Everyone could now see the man’s condition, and there should have been compassion in everyone’s heart.

Verse 4

Mark 3:4

Jesus said ... Jesus deals with the spectators first. He sought to prevent them from being offended by his actions.

Is it lawful ... Jesus’ retorical question. The answer should be obvious. Do good, save life, or kill?

held their peace ... they were silent. They couldn’t reply to his question, or their motives would be too plain.

Lesson point: 1) "Doing good" is to be characteristic of Christians. Acts 9:36

2) Some today confise good and evil. Isaiah 5:20

Verse 5

Mark 3:5

1. Jesus looked around "periblepomai" and all-inclusive penetrating look. [wording characteristic of Mark. Mark 3:34; Mark 5:32; Mark 10:23; Mark 11:11)

Luke adds that Jesus knew what they were thinking.

2. Jesus’ anger. - Aorist tense - carries the sense of momentary anger. Grieve is present tense, sense of continuing grief.

3. He was angry because they were not compassionate over the man’s condition.

4. Angry at their malice and wicked hearts.

5. His anger was controlled, and didn’t lead him to sin.

6. His hand "restored" (NIV adds "completely restored")

Jesus only asked the man to "stretch out his hand" and didn’t appear to "do" anything. The man "did" the action. Jesus didn’t apply medicine, or even wave his hand, etc. so they couldn’t accuse him of "working" after all! They were caught!

Mark tells us more about the emotions of Jesus than other writers. He pictures Jesus:

a. Sighing deeply in His spirit -- Mark 7:34; Mark 8:12.

b. Moved with compassion -- Mark 6:31.

c. Marvelling at their unbelief -- Mark 6:6.

d. Moved with righteous anger -- Mark 3:5; Mark 8:33; Mark 10:14.

e. Looking with love on the rich young ruler -- Mark 10:21.

f. Feeling the pangs of hunger -- Mark 11:12.

g. Becoming tired and needing rest -- Mark 6:31.

and he stretched it out ... He was blessed in obeying the Lord!

Verse 6

Mark 3:6

What the Pharisees Got out of this Service:

1. Went out from the service.

2. Counseled with the Herodians -- a political party they usually dispised and wouldn’t associate with.

So they are hypocritical.

3. Plotting to put Jesus to death. "To kill" - Plotting on the Sabbath to do "evil", to "kill." Jesus knew their hearts (John 2:25 )

4. Must choose to do help others or to do evil and plot murder.

5. Plotting -- the first of four such references, Mark 11:18; Mark 12:12; Mark 14:1.

6. Pharisees were influential. But when it suited their purpose counseled with others (cf. Mark 15:1)

Verse 7

Mark 3:7

Jesus withdrew ... Jesus was not ready to bring a confrontation. (As John would say, "His hour had not come.")

Verse 13

Mark 3:13

He went up on the mountain ... This could be understood in two ways: (1) Jesus left the area close by the sea of Galilee and went up into the hill country or (2) this is a prelude to the setting of the Sermon on the Mount (cf. Matthew 5-7), which Mark does not record.

Verse 14

Mark 3:14

so that they would be with Him -- Jesus was intimately involved in the training of the Twelve.

send them out to preach -- Jesus came to preach the good news of the kingdom. He trained His disciples to do the same: (1) the Twelve (cf. Mark 6:7-13; Matthew 10:1; Matthew 10:9-14; Luke 9:1-6) and (2) later, seventy disciples (cf. Luke 10:1-20).

Verse 17

Mark 3:17

Sons of thunder -- The Jewish mind often spoke metaphorically of a "characteristic" dwelling in a person, and sometimes calling him the "son of ... " that characteristic. Thus, of Barnabas as "son of consolation" Acts 4:36, and James and John as "sons of thunder" Mark 3:17; and the term "son of perdition" in 2 Thessalonians 2:3.

See ISBE "Son; Sons" (3)

(3) The word “son” is used with a following genitive of quality to indicate some characteristic of the person or persons described. In the English the word “son” is usually omitted and the phrase is paraphrased as in 2 Samuel 3:34, where the words translated “wicked men” in the King James Version mean literally, sons or children of wickedness.

Verse 31

Mark 3:31

His brethren -- see note on John 7:3

Bibliographical Information
Gann, Windell. "Commentary on Mark 3". Gann's Commentary on the Bible. 2021.