Members of God’s family

Pentecost 2 (Proper 5), June 6, 2021

Text: Mark 3:20–35

Theme: Members of God’s family

Other Lessons: Genesis 3:8–15; Psalm 130; 2 Corinthians 4:13–5:1

1. In the Name of the Father…Amen.

1. The Gospel lesson serves as our sermon text for this morning.

1. Dear brothers and sisters in Christ, let us pray:
– Lord, preserve us from the power of Satan. Remove any lingering
doubts we might harbor, that we might be confident in the
fact that You
have bound him and rescued us from His dominion. Amen.

1. Grace, mercy, and peace be yours from God the Father through our Lord
and Savior Jesus Christ. Amen.


1. When God created Eve—unlike descriptions of his other acts of
creation—a unique Hebrew word is used to describe her creation.
1. Literally translated, Genesis 2:22 says:
1. “And the rib that the Lord God had taken from the man he
built into a woman.”
2. From this wording (Hebrew banah), rabbis would recognize woman
as the building and builder of humanity.
3. Thus Sarai says of Hagar:
1. “Perhaps I shall build children through her” (Genesis 16:2).
4. And as Ruth is ready to marry Boaz, the people exclaim:
1. “May the Lord make the woman, who is coming into your house,
like Rachel and Leah, who together built the house of Israel”
(Ruth 4:11).
5. God always uses means, and his means for building families is

1. God’s Goal Is That We, Individually and Collectively, Live as
Immortal Members of His Family.

I. In his creation, God’s goal was to have family.

1. God’s creatures were lovingly commanded to be fruitful and
multiply—have families.

1. Humans were unique, created in God’s image—a family reference
(Genesis 1:26).
1. “Image” includes the understanding of being one’s child.
2. For example, Adam’s son Seth is described as being in Adam’s
image (Genesis 5:1–3).
– This is the book of the generations of Adam. When God created
man, he made him in the likeness of God. (2) Male and
female he created
them, and he blessed them and named them Man when they
were created. (3)
When Adam had lived 130 years, he fathered a son in his
own likeness, after
his image, and named him Seth.
3. We still use the term in our phrase “spitting image.”
1. More about “image” later.

1. Thus Adam and Eve were sons and daughters of God by creation (Luke
– the son of Enos, the son of Seth, the son of Adam, the son of

1. Unlike any other creature, God wanted man to be family.

1. So God instituted marriage—a foundational family concept—for
humans (Genesis
– Then the LORD God said, “It is not good that the man should be
alone; I will make him a helper fit for him.” (19) Now out
of the ground
the LORD God had formed every beast of the field and every bird of the
heavens and brought them to the man to see what he would call
them. And
whatever the man called every living creature, that was its
name. (20)
The man gave names to all livestock and to the birds of the
heavens and to
every beast of the field. But for Adam there was not found a
helper fit for
him. (21) So the LORD God caused a deep sleep to fall upon
the man, and
while he slept took one of his ribs and closed up its place
with flesh.
(22) And the rib that the LORD God had taken from the man
he made into a
woman and brought her to the man. (23) Then the man said,
“This at last
is bone of my bones and flesh of my flesh; she shall be called Woman,
because she was taken out of Man.” (24) Therefore a man
shall leave his
father and his mother and hold fast to his wife, and they
shall become one
flesh. (25) And the man and his wife were both naked and
were not ashamed.

1. Moreover, God created us to want to have families.

1. Families are most commonly established by birth—blood relatives.
1. Children naturally want to be in a family, to have parents.
2. Parents (usually) want children.

1. But foster children, stepchildren, and biological children are all
equally loved as family.
1. Adopted children are of the same status as children of a blood

1. Then families are also established in marriage, a union as strong as
blood relations.

1. All these family concepts are used by God to describe his
relationship with humanity.

1. In Jesus, God ultimately became our blood relative, our Brother.
1. From eternity, Jesus had a Father, but no mother.
1. As God’s Son, he is without beginning;
2. a mother implies a beginning.

1. In time, the man Jesus has a mother, but no earthly father.

1. In our text for this morning (especially in verses 21 and 31), we get
a glimpse of Jesus’ earthly family:
1. mother, brothers, sisters, but still no human father.
– Mark 3:21 And when his family heard it, they went out to seize
him, for they were saying, “He is out of his mind.”
1. Later in Mark 6:2–4 we hear these words:
– And on the Sabbath he began to teach in the synagogue, and
many who heard him were astonished, saying, “Where did
this man get these
things? What is the wisdom given to him? How are such
mighty works done by
his hands? (3) Is not this the carpenter, the son of
Mary and brother of
James and Joses and Judas and Simon? And are not his
sisters here with us?”
And they took offense at him. (4) And Jesus said to
them, “A prophet is
not without honor, except in his hometown and among his
relatives and in
his own household.”

1. Thus, as a man, Jesus is our Brother.

1. But as God, Jesus is also betrothed to his people.
1. Marriage is also a family relationship God uses to describe his
relationship to his people.
2. Christ desired to take us as his Bride.

1. God’s goal is still to have humanity as his family.

1. In disobedience, man lost the image of God; man broke God’s desired

1. Man ceased to be children in God’s family.
2. Of course, Satan had a hand in this (Genesis 3:1).
– Now the serpent was more crafty than any other beast of the
field that the LORD God had made. He said to the woman, “Did
God actually
say, ‘You shall not eat of any tree in the garden’?”
3. Therefore, humans now have the devil as their father (John 8:41, 44
– You are doing the works your father did.” They said to him, “We
were not born of sexual immorality. We have one Father—even
God…You are of
your father the devil, and your will is to do your father’s
desires. He was
a murderer from the beginning, and does not stand in the
truth, because
there is no truth in him. When he lies, he speaks out of his
own character,
for he is a liar and the father of lies.”

1. Man is born in Satan’s domain (Ephesians 2:1–3).
– And you were dead in the trespasses and sins (2) in which you
once walked, following the course of this world, following
the prince of
the power of the air, the spirit that is now at work in the sons of
disobedience— (3) among whom we all once lived in the
passions of our
flesh, carrying out the desires of the body and the mind, and were by
nature children of wrath, like the rest of mankind.

1. Jesus was accused of involvement with Satan’s family (Mark 3:22–27).
– And the scribes who came down from Jerusalem were saying, “He is
possessed by Beelzebul,” and “by the prince of demons he casts out the
demons.” (23) And he called them to him and said to them in
“How can Satan cast out Satan? (24) If a kingdom is divided against
itself, that kingdom cannot stand. (25) And if a house is
divided against
itself, that house will not be able to stand. (26) And if
Satan has risen
up against himself and is divided, he cannot stand, but is
coming to an
end. (27) But no one can enter a strong man’s house and plunder his
goods, unless he first binds the strong man. Then indeed he
may plunder his

1. Now marriage and bearing children are under a curse (Genesis 3:16).
– To the woman he said, “I will surely multiply your pain in
childbearing; in pain you shall bring forth children. Your
desire shall be
contrary to your husband, but he shall rule over you.”

1. Now many, many sins are related to broken families.
1. Betrayal, like Adam blaming Eve (Genesis 3:12),
– The man said, “The woman whom you gave to be with me, she
gave me fruit of the tree, and I ate.”
2. adultery
3. fornication
4. divorce
5. unloved and unloving children
6. disobedience in families

1. But God desires that we be adopted back into his family (Gal 4:5–7).

1. The Son of God becomes the seed of a woman (Gen 3:15).
– I will put enmity between you and the woman, and between your
offspring and her offspring; he shall bruise your head, and you shall
bruise his heel.”

1. As the Son of God, Christ is of God’s family.
1. And he becomes the new Adam to bring man back into God’s family.

1. As predicted, Jesus must crush the serpent’s head (Gen 3:15).
1. Our text describes this as “[binding] the strong man” (Mark 3:27
2. Jesus must plunder Satan’s goods, taking his “children” away
from him.
3. Thus exorcisms are spoken at Baptisms:
1. the sponsors confess that a child does “renounce the devil”
and all his works and all his ways.

1. Likewise, to restore the image of God in man, Jesus must destroy sin
and death.
1. Death belongs to Satan; Jesus takes it upon himself (Hebrews
– Since therefore the children share in flesh and blood, he
himself likewise partook of the same things, that through
death he might
destroy the one who has the power of death, that is, the devil,
2. Sin is the root of death.
1. Eating the forbidden fruit caused death;
2. the wages of sin continue to be death.
3. Therefore to restore God’s human family, Jesus had to
destroy sin (1 Pet 3:18).

For Christ also suffered once for sins, the righteous for the
unrighteous, that he might bring us to God, being put to death in the flesh
but made alive in the spirit,
1. And that is exactly what Christ did for us!

1. In Jesus, God’s goal is reached; his family in this creation is

1. Jesus did destroy sin and death and crush the power of Satan by dying
and rising.

1. Jesus now has eternal brothers, sisters, and mother (Mark 3:33–35).
– And he answered them, “Who are my mother and my brothers?”
(34) And looking about at those who sat around him, he
said, “Here are my
mother and my brothers! (35) For whoever does the will of
God, he is my
brother and sister and mother.”

1. Collectively, God’s people are now also Christ’s Bride (Ephesians 5:32
– And walk in love, as Christ loved us and gave himself up for us,
a fragrant offering and sacrifice to God.

1. In Christ, we now again possess the image of God (2 Cor 3:18; 4:4).
– 2 Corinthians 3:18 And we all, with unveiled face, beholding
the glory of the Lord, are being transformed into the same
image from one
degree of glory to another. For this comes from the Lord who
is the Spirit.
– 2 Corinthians 4:4 In their case the god of this world has
blinded the minds of the unbelievers, to keep them from
seeing the light of
the gospel of the glory of Christ, who is the image of God.
1. Therefore, God’s family does God’s will.
2. We believe in Jesus, who did God’s will (John 6:29).
– Jesus answered them, “This is the work of God, that you
believe in him whom he has sent.”

1. We are now empowered to behave as family, as God’s children (Ephesians
– Therefore be imitators of God, as beloved children. (2) And
walk in love, as Christ loved us and gave himself up for us,
a fragrant
offering and sacrifice to God.


1. How appropriate that he who must be the builder of every house (Psalm
127:1) ultimately builds his house of salvation through a
woman—the humble
Virgin Mary!
1. Now the Bride of Christ has become God’s building and builder,
as eternal children are continually conceived and born in and from her
through the living and abiding Word of God (Mark 3:34–35).

1. Our restoration as God’s children is beyond the grasp of the world.
1. Thus the apostle John writes:
– “See what kind of love the Father has given to us, that we
should be called children of God; and so we are.
– The reason why the world does not know us is that it did not
know him.
– Beloved, we are God’s children now, and what we will be has
not yet appeared; but we know that when he appears we
shall be like him,
because we shall see him as he is” (1 John 3:1–2).

1. As we live out our lives in this fallen world, we struggle; we have
1. But we know that as God’s children, we have eternal life.
2. We shall indeed “be like him.”
3. We are waiting for our glorious immortal bodies, bodies like
what was intended for God’s children.
4. Thus, in conclusion, hear how St. Paul explains our immortal
family, speaking of each of us in Romans 8 as children of God:
– The creation waits with eager longing for the revealing of
the sons of God.
– For the creation was subjected to futility, not willingly,
but because of him who subjected it, in hope that the
creation itself will
be set free from its bondage to corruption and obtain the
freedom of the
glory of the children of God.
– For we know that the whole creation has been groaning
together in the pains of childbirth until now.
– And not only the creation, but we ourselves, who have the
firstfruits of the Spirit, groan inwardly as we wait
eagerly for adoption
as sons, the redemption of our bodies. (Romans 8:19–23) Amen.

1. Let us pray:
– Lord, thank You for the privilege of being included in Your
eternal family. Keep us in this faith and life forever. Amen.

1. 2 Corinthians 13:14 The grace of the Lord Jesus Christ and the love
of God and the fellowship of the Holy Spirit be with you all.

1. The peace of God, which passes all understanding, keep your hearts
and minds in Christ Jesus. Amen.

1. In the Name of the Father…Amen.