The Gospel of Mark | A House Divided | Mark 3.23-30 | 

by | Nov 9, 2023

”So Jesus called them over to him and began to speak to them in parables: “How can Satan drive out Satan?24 If a kingdom is divided against itself, that kingdom cannot stand. 25 If a house is divided against itself, that house cannot stand. 26 And if Satan opposes himself and is divided, he cannot stand; his end has come. 27 In fact, no one can enter a strong man’s house without first tying him up. Then he can plunder the strong man’s house. 28 Truly I tell you, people can be forgiven all their sins and every slander they utter, 29 but whoever blasphemes against the Holy Spirit will never be forgiven; they are guilty of an eternal sin.” 30 He said this because they were saying, “He has an impure spirit.” Mark 3.23-30

It always makes me laugh when I see folks from rival football teams living and dwelling together. One might represent the University of Texas and the other the University of Oklahoma. If they live together and on game day, one will wear one an organize jersey representing the Longhorns and the other a red jersey representing the Sooners. Sometimes they will have a sign in their yard which says, “A House Divided.” You’ve most certainly seen this before.

That phrase comes from this passage in Mark. And yet, the house divided here is not NCAA football teams, its Jesus and Satan, good and evil, heaven verses hell. Jesus tells us that a house divided against itself, with inner conflict, turmoil and allegiances can not stand. He said this in response to folks accusing him of being possessed by Satan. And yet Jesus says, “How can Satan drive out Satan?” Jesus was so sensible! He then discusses spiritual warfare and then moves into forgiveness of sins and the unforgivable sin – blasphemy against the Holy Spirit.

My point is God’s goodness can not be mixed with Satans’ evil. Jesus can not be for God and Satan. He has no demon, He is the Lord of Light, of love, of truth. Jesus is the Word made Flesh filled with God’s Holy Spirit. In the same way, a Christian can not (or should not) entertain good and evil within their heart. There is no room for evil only holiness, purity and righteousness within the believer. A house (or soul) that is spiritually divided can not stand. We live either for Christ or the devil.

The good news is that God has set us free from sin. Even when we sin, and occasionally turn away from God, we return immediately and instantly. We do not hesitate. We sense the conviction of the Holy Spirit and run back to the Father. Blasphemy against the Holy Spirit is a complete outright and on going rejection of God and everything that he has done that we take to our grave. A complete rejection of God erases the possibility of salvation and forgiveness.

Who we are in Jesus is “little Christs.” We are Christians, seeking to live in unity with God and others. We are not a house divided but a soul seeking to serve one Master Jesus.

Now is the day of salvation. Now is the time when Christ calls us to repent. Now is the day to surrender our lives to the One who sacrificed his for us.

”O Lord God, you are faithful. When sin creeps in, when dark thoughts cloud my judgement, when I wrestle with evil, you strengthen me with your Spirit. You call me into fellowship with your Son and communion with your Spirit. Come now, Lord, fill me with your love. For you are good and your love endures forever.” Amen