Mark 10:1-12 God Alone Receives the Widow

The Text

Mark 10:1–12 (CSB)
1 He set out from there and went to the region of Judea and across the Jordan. Then crowds converged on him again, and as was his custom he taught them again.

2 Some Pharisees came to test him, asking, “Is it lawful for a man to divorce his wife?”

3 He replied to them, “What did Moses command you?”

4 They said, “Moses permitted us to write divorce papers and send her away.”

5 But Jesus told them, “He wrote this command for you because of the hardness of your hearts.

6 But from the beginning of creation God made them male and female.

7 For this reason a man will leave his father and mother

8 and the two will become one flesh. So they are no longer two, but one flesh.

9 Therefore what God has joined together, let no one separate.”

10 When they were in the house again, the disciples questioned him about this matter.

11 He said to them, “Whoever divorces his wife and marries another commits adultery against her.

12 Also, if she divorces her husband and marries another, she commits adultery.”

The Devotion

Was Christ speaking on divorce? Was Christ speaking about marriage?

Yes. And yet, if you go examining this passage in trying to see whether or not we are allowed to get a divorce or what did God say about marriage, then we miss the point.

Christ has given the gospel commandment:

Matthew 22:37-40 (CSB) He said to him, “Love the Lord your God with all your heart, with all your soul, and with all your mind. This is the greatest and most important command. The second is like it: Love your neighbor as yourself. All the Law and the Prophets depend on these two commands.”

One Another: We are saved by God to God and to each other

Love the Lord your God.

But look at the second commandment:

Love your neighbor as yourself.

Why is that so important?

First, Christ said that this "is like" love the Lord your God with all of your heart.

1 John 4:7-8 (CSB) Dear friends, let us love one another, because love is from God, and everyone who loves has been born of God and knows God. The one who does not love does not know God, because God is love.

Second, he said that the whole of Scripture is dependent on both loving God and loving your neighbor as yourself:

All the Law and the Prophets depend on these two commands.

Why is that so important?

Now, here is your word search homework for the day: "other" and "one another". To help out, try just the New Testament. The NT has over 40 commands of God in our relation to one another.

To sum it up nicely, look at what Paul writes in Romans:

Romans 12:10-21 (CSB) Love one another deeply as brothers and sisters. Take the lead in honoring one another. Do not lack diligence in zeal; be fervent in the Spirit; serve the Lord. Rejoice in hope; be patient in affliction; be persistent in prayer. Share with the saints in their needs; pursue hospitality. Bless those who persecute you; bless and do not curse. Rejoice with those who rejoice; weep with those who weep. Live in harmony with one another. Do not be proud; instead, associate with the humble. Do not be wise in your own estimation. Do not repay anyone evil for evil. Give careful thought to do what is honorable in everyone’s eyes. If possible, as far as it depends on you, live at peace with everyone. Friends, do not avenge yourselves; instead, leave room for God’s wrath, because it is written, Vengeance belongs to me; I will repay, says the Lord. But If your enemy is hungry, feed him. If he is thirsty, give him something to drink. For in so doing you will be heaping fiery coals on his head. Do not be conquered by evil, but conquer evil with good.

One Another: We get to worship God together

Hebrews 10:23-25 (CSB) Let us hold on to the confession of our hope without wavering, since he who promised is faithful. And let us consider one another in order to provoke love and good works, not neglecting to gather together, as some are in the habit of doing, but encouraging each other, and all the more as you see the day approaching.

In other words, we are not saved in isolation.

When we are called by God, then we are called to another. That means not just Christian to Christian but man to fellow man--human to human--image bearer to image bearer.

What did Christ say?

John 13:34-35 (CSB) “I give you a new command: Love one another. Just as I have loved you, you are also to love one another. By this everyone will know that you are my disciples, if you love one another.”

One Another: our bond together is Christ and the Church

In other words, Christ and his Bride:

Ephesians 5:25-33 (CSB) Husbands, love your wives, just as Christ loved the church and gave himself for her to make her holy, cleansing her with the washing of water by the word. He did this to present the church to himself in splendor, without spot or wrinkle or anything like that, but holy and blameless. In the same way, husbands are to love their wives as their own bodies. He who loves his wife loves himself. For no one ever hates his own flesh but provides and cares for it, just as Christ does for the church, since we are members of his body. For this reason a man will leave his father and mother and be joined to his wife, and the two will become one flesh. This mystery is profound, but I am talking about Christ and the church. To sum up, each one of you is to love his wife as himself, and the wife is to respect her husband.

Like all the children of Adam, we are all like the widow: we have no husband to love us, to care for us, to provide for us, to make a home for us, and to call us his own. We are already born into death. Spiritua and Eternal speaking, we are born alone, and separated at birth from one another. Yet, Christ saw his Bride, widowed because of our sin, loves her, comes for her, lived for her, died for her, buried for her, conquers death, sin, Satan, demons, and hell for her, ascends to glory for her.

And now, we as the Bride, as his church, are no longer apart from Him but together with him forever. And because of him, we are join together, bonded forever, that nothing in all of creation can ever separate us from the love of God that is found in our bridegroom, Jesus Christ, our Lord.

The whole thing is a mystery:

We are set apart from the world and yet to one another.

The gospel commandment is to every creature but only few are chosen.

The wages of our sin is death but the gift of God is eternal life for those who put their faith and trust in Christ Jesus.