Mark 9: 42-50….Was Jesus really so gentle?

Whoever causes one of these little ones who believe in me to sin, it would be better for him if a great millstone were hung around his neck and he were thrown into the sea. And if your hand causes you to sin, cut it off. It is better for you to enter life crippled than with two hands to go to hell, to the unquenchable fire. And if your foot causes you to sin, cut it off. It is better for you to enter life lame than with two feet to be thrown into hell. And if your eye causes you to sin, tear it out. It is better for you to enter the kingdom of God with one eye than with two eyes to be thrown into hell, ‘where their worm does not die and the fire is not quenched.’ For everyone will be salted with fire. Salt is good, but if the salt has lost its saltiness, how will you make it salty again? Have salt in yourselves, and be at peace with one another.”

Comment: There is a very gentle side to Jesus; but there is also a very strong and unbending side also. Read the above passage again.

  • Was Jesus talking about child abuse or about training children to sin? Maybe both but the judgement was decisive and equalled death.
  • You can read it literally, in which case you amputate the body organ which causes you to sin. I doubt this is the way to read it but rather to seriously consider your actions and stop sinning. Certainly the hand can do such things as stealing; the feet lead you to places for you to do abominable things; and certainly the eye can cause all sorts of evil things to be implanted into your thinking and we must remember that our living comes out of our thinking!
  • The judgement of hell is underlined heavily.
  • Salt has may qualities, as a preservative, adding taste and the reference here seems to harp back to Jesus saying that His followers are meant to be the salt of the earth. So it is reminding us whose we are and what He wants us to be like – salty not sinning!

Prayer: You call us to be strong for true goodness, Lord Jesus. Help me to be the person You want me to be!

One thought on “Mark 9: 42-50….Was Jesus really so gentle?

  1. Thank you Barry for your comments on this passage. When Jesus spoke of cutting off body parts if they are not doing the right thing, I wonder if He was speaking “tongue in cheek” in sarcastic humor? I feel He may have been doing that. He speaks in a similar style when talking about the speck in someone else’s eye, and the plank in your own eye. We certainly need to keep our minds, our thoughts, and eyes on Jesus, for it is only through Him that we can make sure we are doing what He desires. God bless you.


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