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Stubborn

I don’t want Jesus looking at me in anger. That is not a good thing. I don’t want to be legalistic and a part of the religious elite. I don’t want Jesus to be grieved at the hardness of my heart. That is just not right. Jesus frames this as an issue between good and evil. That is a stark contrast but real.

It can happen though. I must be on my guard. Will I be stubborn? Will I oppose the will of Jesus and doing good for others? Will I be silent when Jesus challenges me?

Jesus entered the synagogue again, and a man was there who had a shriveled hand. In order to accuse him, they were watching him closely to see whether he would heal him on the Sabbath. He told the man with the shriveled hand, “Stand before us.” Then he said to them, “Is it lawful to do good on the Sabbath or to do evil, to save life or to kill?” But they were silent.

After looking around at them with anger, he was grieved at the hardness of their hearts and told the man, “Stretch out your hand.” So, he stretched it out, and his hand was restored.

Immediately the Pharisees went out and started plotting with the Herodians against him, how they might kill him. | Mark 3:1-6 (CSB)

Jesus casts angry glances at the Pharisees because their murderous design against him blots out the sympathy they should have for the man with the withered hand. For them, this man is only a potentially handy tool with which to nail Jesus.

Jesus grieves deeply because of their lack of sympathy. Introduced with an emphatic “he says to the man,” Jesus’ powerful command that the man stretch out his hand effects the healing. The hand was stiff, immobile, limp. Stretching it out demonstrated its restoration to health and vitality, to goodness and life.

Here is the literal translation:

And on looking around at them [the Pharisees] with anger, being deeply grieved because of the hardness of their heart he says to the man, “Stretch out the [withered] hand.” And he stretched [it] out, and his hand was restored.

Sources:

Christian Standard Bible. (2017). (Mk 3:5). Nashville, TN: Holman Bible Publishers.

Gundry, R. H. (2010). Commentary on the New Testament: Verse-by-Verse Explanations with a Literal Translation (pp. 147–151). Peabody, MA: Hendrickson Publishers.

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