There are four gospels in the New Testament, the shortest of the four, is the gospel of Mark. In the gospel of Mark, the main issue dividing Christ from the Leaders of Israel, was a form of envious fear; fear on behalf of the leaders. The leaders of Israel possessed significant fear of the power and authority Christ had. Christ rejected the commandments of men, but rather honored and reinforced the commandments of God. Christ was one of the few individuals, this early in time, that successfully challenged, and threatened the power of the Israelite leaders, and this inspired both envy and fear among them.
Christ had authority over many things of which the leaders of Israel did not have power over. For instance, he had authority over sicknesses, diseases, and demons, he had authority over nature, he possessed the ability to walk on water, etc. Christ had authority over things that humankind could not possibly imagine having authority over. This made the Israelite officials fearful.
Because of Christ’s authority, he attracted large crowds of people, many of which who traveled great distance to see him. The population began to recognize Christ as their leader, rather than the Israelite leaders. The idea of the leaders losing their authority was a very daunting thought to them.
Christ had the ability to distribute this power, given to him by God the Father, to his disciples. They were then sent out to perform miracles in Christ’s name, and spread his message. In the mind of the leaders in the synagogue, Christ was expanding his authority, which rapidly became more of a threat to their own authority. One of Christ’s main reasons for sending out his disciples was so that his message could be spread to the people in as many regions as possible. The Israelite leaders saw the teaching’s of Christ as a threat to their society, rather than what it actually was; a purification of their society.
The accusations against him were made mainly because the Israelite leaders felt threatened by his authority. Christ was undermining their law, with the law of God, and they could see that he was making a substantial impact on the population. There were multiple efforts to turn him in, but many of them lacked validity. Even Pontius Pilate could see no offense that was enough to condemn him to persecution for. In Mark 15:10, the author writes, referring to Pilate, “For he knew that it was out of envy that the chief priests had handed him over.”
He called thousands of people to repentance and renewed the mosaic laws which they had practiced for ages, specifically the law of divorce. Again, this inspires fear in the leaders of Israel. Christ had the authority to renew laws given by Moses, only the Son of God could have power like this, and that contributed to the fear and envy amongst the officials.
There were several different issues that divided Jesus from the leaders of Israel, but the main one is the envious fear possessed by the Israelite leaders.