Mark 3:7-12 Responses To Jesus Based on Mark Copelandís sermon Mark and Matthew seem to go hand-in-hand to give us a good description of the earthly life of Jesus. Often, we can find the same account in both books, only through a slightly different perspective. Here, Mark is summarizing Jesusí Galilean ministry. In these verses, Mark tells us that great groups of people followed Jesus, a fact that the other gospel writers also give; but in these few verses, Mark also divides the larger group into three smaller groups. a. \\#7,9\\ He speaks of Jesusí disciples. b. \\#8,10\\ He speaks of the needy who came to be helped. c. \\#11-12\\ And He speaks of those possessed with demons. I wonder if these three groups do no give to us the three of the four groups of people on the earth. Letís consider them for a moment and see. I will begin with the only group that Mark does not mention. I. THE IGNORANT A. It makes sense that neither Mark nor any of the gospel writers would spend any time mentioning the people that did not know about Jesus. 1. As they walked around the nation of Israel with Jesus, they likely did not find any. 2. From the first miracle that Jesus performed, the word about Jesus spread like a hot fire through dry weeds. B. Yet, we must remember, there are great multitudes who have never even heard the name of Jesus Christ. 1. Facts are hard to come by but I have estimates from 2009. 2. At that time, the world was thought to host 6.8 billion souls. 3. Of that number, it is estimated that 2.74 billion have never even heard of Jesus. 4. That is roughly 1 out of 3 have never heard. 5. We know how difficult it is to get people who have heard the gospel to respond. a. How impossible is it for those who have never heard to be saved? b. It is utterly impossible! Ro 10:14 How then shall they call on him in whom they have not believed? and how shall they believe in him of whom they have not heard? and how shall they hear without a preacher? 6. Interestingly, 4.65 billion people live in what is referred to as the 10/40 Window. a. That is a rectangular area lying 10 degrees latitude north of the equator to 40 degrees latitude north of the equator starts on the east side of Africa and goes to the west side of China. b. Some of the least evangelized countries of the world lie within that window. c. Some of those in that window are Islamic, Hindu, animalistic, and Buddhists. d. Most of the people have never heard the news that Jesus is Godís Son, that He died on the cross for their sins, rose on the third day, and will forgive sin if asked. e. Most of the groups of people in that window do not a Bible in their language. C. It is a mind blowing that in the 2,000 years since died on the cross, 1/3 of the world does not know anything about Him. D. It is also interesting that of all of the people groups I will mention in this message, this is the easiest group to help. 1. To get out of this group does not require salvation. 2. It only requires knowledge. 3. With knowledge, we do not move them into any kind of Christian group but we do move them out of the ignorant group. E. To eliminate this group, ChristiansÖ 1. should pray for them. 2. should send missionaries to them. 3. should go ourselves. F. Letís talk about a different group of people, one described in the text. Letís talk about the condemned. II. THE HOSTILE A. The hostile are headed to the same hell as the ignorant but for a totally different reason. 1. They are going to hell because they chose to do so. 2. They are not ignorant but willful. 3. We might add that this group as they are presented in this account are not just willful but somewhat hostile. B. The hostile in this passage are represented by those possessed with unclean spirits. 1. Unclean spirits were demons, who are probably fallen angels. a. Their hostility is not seen in their actions but more in their history. b. There was a time when they served GodóJesus, but then rebelled against Him. 2. \\#11\\ You can see their knowledge of who Jesus is. C. This people group is unusual in that they were actually demon possessed. 1. There is such a thing as demon possession today. 2. How much control the demons had over their hosts and how much control the hosts had to accept Jesus as their Savior, I do not know. 3. Most of the Bible accounts indicates that Jesus cast out demons before ever dealing with the person who was possessed. 4. My own conclusion is that a person possessed with a demon is unsaved and so condemned. 5. If I had an occasion to help someone I thought was demon possessed, I believe I would follow Jesusí strategy - Cast out the demon first, then attempt to win the host. D. However, letís look at this through a different window, the hostile and condemned group. 1. There seems to be an increasing number in this camp. a. I have already mentioned the 1 out of 3 who are condemned because they have never heard. b. We have no statistical information on the number of those who have heard who Jesus is and who, with hostilities, have chosen to stay condemned. 2. What do we do for the hostile and condemned group? a. We need to understand their problem. Romans 1:28 And even as they did not like to retain God in their knowledge, God gave them over to a reprobate mind, to do those things which are not convenient; (1) This passage comes from Romans 1 which describe man spiritual and moral spiral downward. (a) The two do not have to go together. (b) One can be lost and be very moral and upright in their behavior. (2) However, this passage does describe the reason a person is part of this group. (a) They do not want to retain God in their mind. (b) They do not want to think about Him, what pleases Him, or what offends Him. (c) I will tell you want is not likely to help this kind of person, arguing with him. b. We need to pray for them that God would soften their hearts. c. We need to love them, telling them the truth as God gives opportunity. E. There is something I need to say. 1. Any person who has knowledge of Jesus and rejects has some things in common with the demons. a. Both are already condemned. b. Both are just waiting on their ultimate judgment to be carried out. Joh 3:18 He that believeth on him is not condemned: but he that believeth not is condemned already, because he hath not believed in the name of the only begotten Son of God. Mt 8:29 And, behold, they cried out, saying, What have we to do with thee, Jesus, thou Son of God? art thou come hither to torment us before the time? 2. It is a sad but true fact: As there is one Lord and one salvation so there is one condemnation and one hell. II. THE CURIOUS A. It appears that most who followed Jesus fell into this category. 1. It included those looking to be healed or somehow helped (probably a great number). 2. There would be some who perhaps themselves did not need a miracle but wanted to see one none-the-less. 3. And it included those who wanted to hear what Jesus had to say. B. Overall, this group had no commitment to Jesus. 1. They were just there for the "Ifs." a. If there is a miracle, I want to see it. b. If He teaches something, I want to hear it. c. If the Romans come get Him, I want to know. 2. These were those that John meant when he wrote. John 2:24 But Jesus did not commit himself unto them, because he knew all men, 25 And needed not that any should testify of man: for he knew what was in man. 3. And there were those who gradually quit on Jesus over a great variety of reasons. John 6:66 From that time many of his disciples went back, and walked no more with him. C. Interestingly, it seems like the largest group to follow Jesus today are also the curious. 1. That would be those who visit churches, maybe even regularly, but never get saved. 2. But overall, they are "tire kickers"; they never commit themselves to Jesus. D. What is our goal for the curious? 1. We are always glad to have the curious. a. Iíd rather have a sinner in church hearing the gospel than a sinner outside not hearing it. b. Our prayer and desire is that they would turn from being the curious to Jesus. 2. So we are going to: a. Pray that God saves the curious. b. Demonstrate as much love and kindness as possible toward them. E. However, everyone needs to know that unless the curious turn to Jesus, there is really little difference in them and the other two groups. 1. All are under the same condemnation and all are headed for the same hell. 2. That might strike you as unfair but we remember that the reason a soul is condemned and damned is not his attitude while he rejects Jesus but the fact that he rejected Jesus. 3. The blessed side of this is that there are some Christians with lousy attitudes who still get to go to heaven because they accepted Jesus. 4. If attitudes counted, some might not make it; but the issue is always what have you done with Jesus. IV. THE COMMITTED A. The committed are represented by the disciples. 1. Understand that you can be a disciple and not be committed. 2. \\#John 6:66\\ Many disciples turned back. 3. A disciples is a student or learn. 4. One who is committed while he will still be learning will have also determined that he is not going to be stopped. B. A committed disciple is one who: 1. These answered the call to salvation. 2. Then they went beyond to answer the call to follow/ obey Jesus. 3. Then they went beyond to answer the call to serve Jesus. 4. Then they went beyond to answer the call to both live and to die for Jesus. C. Of the four groups present on the day of Markís account, the smallest group would be the committed group. There were more demon-possessed there than committed. Dear friend, in which group would you place yourself in your response to Jesus? a. You can not be in the ignorant group. I have given you too much gospel. b. Are you among the committed - a faithful disciple of Jesus Christ? c. Are you among the curious - interested, but have not yet made the decision? d. Are you among the condemned - determined to resist God and refuse to follow Jesus?