What does Mark 3:7 mean?
ESV: Jesus withdrew with his disciples to the sea, and a great crowd followed, from Galilee and Judea
NIV: Jesus withdrew with his disciples to the lake, and a large crowd from Galilee followed.
NASB: Jesus withdrew to the sea with His disciples; and a large multitude from Galilee followed, and also from Judea,
CSB: Jesus departed with his disciples to the sea, and a large crowd followed from Galilee, and a large crowd followed from Judea,
NLT: Jesus went out to the lake with his disciples, and a large crowd followed him. They came from all over Galilee, Judea,
KJV: But Jesus withdrew himself with his disciples to the sea: and a great multitude from Galilee followed him, and from Judaea,
Verse Commentary:
The Sabbath and the synagogue protect Jesus, to an extent, despite the controversies He's caused (Mark 1:21–28; 3:1–6). On the Sabbath, The Jews' travel is highly restricted. In the synagogue, space is limited and courtesies must be observed. But when Jesus takes His disciples to the Sea of Galilee during the week, the growing crowds follow.

Galilee is the region east and south of Syro-Phoenicia and west of the Jordan River, the Sea of Galilee and Decapolis. Samaria, to the south, separates Galilee from Judea. Although Galilee doesn't have the advantage of direct access to the Mediterranean, it does have several major trade roads maintained by the Romans. At this time, it is managed by Herod Antipas, son of Herod the Great (Matthew 2).

Judea is what comes to mind when most modern westerners think of Israel. It sits south of Samaria, bordered by the Jordan River and the Dead Sea on the East and the Mediterranean and Philistia on the west. Jerusalem, Bethlehem, and Bethany are in Judea. It is roughly the same as the land held by the Old Testament southern kingdom of Judah.

Although Jesus was born in Judea (Luke 2:4–7) and travelled there, both as a child (Luke 2:41–42) and an adult (Mark 1:9), most of His followers come from Galilee. Now the accounts of His healings and exorcisms is spreading, and He is beginning to get attention from a much wider area.
Verse Context:
Mark 3:7–12 is the second of five stories recording people's reactions to Jesus' growing ministry. Jesus' fame has spread across Israel. People from Sidon, fifty miles to the northwest, to Idumea, one hundred miles to the southwest, and almost everywhere in between have come for healing. The ever-present crowd keeps growing, to the point where Jesus has to plan an escape route to avoid being injured. Most people are intent on using Jesus' power for their own gain. Ironically, only the demons show Him proper fear and respect. This passage is mirrored in Luke 6:17–19 and possibly in Matthew 12:15–21.
Chapter Summary:
The bulk of chapter 3 deals with how different people react to Jesus' teaching and His assumption of authority. The Pharisees' confusion transitions into plotting. The crowds that continually follow Jesus for healing become more frenetic and dangerous. Jesus' own family, afraid for His sanity, try to pull Him away. But true followers also show themselves. Twelve join together to become a core group, while a slightly bigger crowd, more interested in Jesus' teaching than miracles, earn the honor of being called His true family.
Chapter Context:
Mark chapter 3 continues in the same pattern as chapter 2, describing various teaching and healing encounters from the life of Jesus. These events are used to explain Jesus' overall message and demonstrate His power. They also serve to show how different people react to His teachings. Chapter 4 will focus more on Jesus' parables.
Book Summary:
The Gospel of Mark emphasizes both Jesus' servanthood and His role as the promised Messiah: the Son of God. This is done through a concise, action-packed style. Mark provides relatively few details, instead focusing on actions and simple statements. This relates to the Gospel's authorship, which is believed to be based on the memories of the apostle Peter. These include many of Jesus' miracles, in contrast to other Gospels which include many more of Jesus' teachings and parables. Mark also makes frequent mention of Jesus' ministry being misunderstood by others.
Accessed 4/16/2024 1:01:16 AM
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