One day when Jesus was teaching, his mother and brothers arrived but were unable to work their way through the crowd to get to him. So they sent a message asking him to come out where they could speak to him (Mark 3:31ff). ()Shortly before this they had heard about the large crowds he was attracting so they had tried to bring him home thinking that he was out of his mind (vs. 21). Getting the message, Jesus asked rhetorically, “Who is my mother, and who are my brothers?” Then looking around and pointing to his disciples he said, “Look, these are my mother and my brothers” and added that whoever did the will of God was his brother, sister, or mother (vs. 35).
The question that arises is Jesus’ apparent indifference to his own blood family. Of all people one would think that Jesus would have been more sensitive to the mother that had nurtured him and the siblings that had grown up at his side. Here, once again, it will be helpful to pay attention to context. Jesus had very recently chosen the Twelve to be with him and become bearers of the message of the coming kingdom. Wherever Jesus went, he was surrounded by large crowds. Using simple stories taken from everyday life he taught them about the ways of God and how to live in a world that had had gone astray. When he wasn’t teaching he was healing. The lame and the blind along with the demon possessed came for his healing touch and went away cured. These highly personal experiences emphasize the oneness that existed in the growing family of God. It was without rebuke that he could look into the faces of his listeners and pronounce them family — his mother, his sister, his brothers.
Although we have no way of looking into the mind of Jesus it is not difficult to imagine how this new family of believers was of increasing importance. In life, a second love in no way disparages the first. That Jesus was a member of this new spiritual family in no way diminishe his love for his earthly family. That he was a loving son is clear from his words to his mother from the cross, “Mother dear, John is now your son” and to his beloved disciple, “My mother Mary is now your mother.“ (John 19:26-27)
The point of this for those who are part of the family of God is that we are to honor and care for one another as members of the great family of God extending through time. We are all brothers and sisters, parents and children. God would have us live together as a family in the bond of Christian love. Yes, God himself is our father and Jesus is our brother. The bond cannot be broken