In Mark 3:22-30 we find Jesus’ parable concerning divisions, forgiveness and eternal damnation. The religious leaders could not deny that He performed remarkable miracles, but they were still unwilling to acknowledge Him as the Son of God. Their evil minds conjured up the idea that He was sent by Satan rather than God.
“And the scribes which came down from Jerusalem said, He hath Beelzebub, and by the prince of the devils casteth he out devils. And He called them unto Him, and said unto them in parables, How can Satan cast out Satan? And if a kingdom be divided against itself, that kingdom cannot stand. And if a house be divided against itself, that house cannot stand. And if Satan rise up against himself, and be divided, he cannot stand, but hath an end. No man can enter into a strong man’s house, and spoil his goods, except he will first bind the strong man; and then he will spoil his house” (Mark 3:22-27).
The Scribes believed that Jesus was possessed by Beelzebub (the god of flies). The Philistines knew him as Baal (see :30). The Jews saw him as Satan, the lord of unclean spirits, and so spoke of him as the god of the dung hill. Jesus pointed out the absurdity of their belief that He had an unclean spirit, for if He cast out demons in the name of Satan then was not Satan destroying his own stronghold in people’s lives? Where there is division, the kingdom, good or evil, must fall.
Divisions are the cause of weakness in the Christian church too. If the devil cannot defeat the church by a frontal attack, “the gates of hell shall not prevail against it” (Matthew 16:18), then he will have believers quarrelling over minor issues. To divide is to conquer, to conquer is to rule, to rule is to control, and to control is to enslave. We need to be careful not to allow strife amongst us otherwise we give Satan room to destroy. “Neither give place to the devil” (Ephesians 4:27).
Jesus Christ came to bind up and defeat the stronghold in people’s lives, “But if I cast out devils by the Spirit of God, then the kingdom of God is come unto you” (Matthew 12:28). By allowing the Lord to reign in our lives we can maintain the victory over the devil. One day all the enemies of Christ will be under His feet, “For He must reign, till He hath put all enemies under His feet. The last enemy that shall be destroyed is death” (1 Corinthians 15:25-26).
“Verily I say unto you, All sins shall be forgiven unto the sons of men, and blasphemies wherewith soever they shall blaspheme” (Mark 3:28).
The redeeming blood of Christ, shed for sinners on the cross, is the only remedy for sin. No matter how sinful and wicked a person may be he can still repent and be saved, “The Lord is not slack concerning his promise, as some men count slackness; but is longsuffering to us-ward, not willing that any should perish, but that all should come to repentance” (2 Peter 3:9). It is this doctrine that separates Biblical Christianity from all other religions, for it is the crown and glory of the gospel of Christ. It alone offers man free pardon, full forgiveness, and complete remission without money or works of righteousness, “And by Him all that believe are justified from all things, from which ye could not be justified by the law of Moses” (Acts 13:39) … “Ho, every one that thirsteth, come ye to the waters, and he that hath no money; come ye, buy, and eat; yea, come, buy wine and milk without money and without price” (Isaiah 55:1). We ought to be damned to a lost eternity, but Christ took the punishment for us on the cross, “For Christ also hath once suffered for sins, the just for the unjust, that He might bring us to God, being put to death in the flesh, but quickened by the Spirit” (1 Peter 3:18). This free gift of salvation is open to all, “Come now, and let us reason together, saith the LORD: though your sins be as scarlet, they shall be as white as snow; though they be red like crimson, they shall be as wool” (Isaiah 1:18).
The Lord Jesus Christ is the Unique Saviour. No other religion can boast of a Saviour who came to take away sin, “This is a faithful saying, and worthy of all acceptation, that Christ Jesus came into the world to save sinners” (1 Timothy 1:15). We do not have to rake over the past to remind ourselves of sin, for God certainly does not, “I will remember their sin no more” (Jeremiah 31:34).
“But he that shall blaspheme against the Holy Ghost hath never forgiveness, but is in danger of eternal damnation: Because they said, He hath an unclean spirit” (Mark 3:29-30).
It is beyond doubt that it is possible for a man’s soul to be lost forever in Hell. Some suppose that a God of love would never cast a soul into Hell, but since He is righteous and just He must do exactly that. Besides this, such people reject the plain teaching of Christ in the Scriptures. There are some who can never be forgiven because they have committed the unpardonable sin. This sin is committed by those who are persuaded by the Holy Spirit that Jesus is the only way, but with an evil heart declare Him and His sacrifice to be of the devil. The only sin that God cannot forgive is stubborn unbelief. Once a person has closed his ears and hardened his heart to the pleading of the Holy Spirit there is no hope for him, “To day if ye will hear His voice, harden not your hearts, as in the provocation” (Hebrews 3:15). Once a man rejects the Father, Son, and Holy Spirit there is no way for him to be made righteous, “For it is impossible for those who were once enlightened, and have tasted of the heavenly gift, and were made partakers of the Holy Ghost, and have tasted the good word of God, and the powers of the world to come, if they shall fall away, to renew them again unto repentance; seeing they crucify to themselves the Son of God afresh, and put Him to an open shame” (Hebrews 6:4-6).
“Take heed, brethren, lest there be in any of you an evil heart of unbelief, in departing from the living God” (Hebrews 3:12). This “evil heart of unbelief” is what damns the soul to Hell. A person can be very religious, moral and humanitarian but still have unbelief in their hearts. Unbelief is self-destructive and can spread like a cancer. True faith is found in those who have received Jesus Christ as the Lord of their lives and have believed on His word.