Adam Clarke Commentary
The Pharisees question our Lord concerning divorce, Mark 10:1-12. Little children are brought to him, Mark 10:13-16. The person who inquired how he might inherit eternal life, Mark 10:17-22. How difficult it is for a rich man to be saved, Mark 10:23-27. What they shall receive who have left all for Christ and his Gospel, Mark 10:28-31. He foretells his death, Mark 10:32-34. James and John desire places of pre-eminence in Christ‘s kingdom, Mark 10:35-41. Christ shows them the necessity of humility, Mark 10:42-46. Blind Bartimeus healed, Mark 10:46-52.
He arose - Κακειθεν αναϚας may be translated, he departed thence. The verb ανιϚημι has this sense in some of the purest Greek writers. See Kypke. Many transactions took place between those mentioned in the preceding chapter, and these that follow, which are omitted by Matthew and Mark; but they are related both by Luke and John. See Lightfoot, and Bishop Newcome.
Is it lawful for a man to put away his wife? - See this question about divorce largely explained on Matthew 19:3-12 (note).
And if a woman shall put away her husband - From this it appears that in some cases, the wife assumed the very same right of divorcing her husband that the husband had of divorcing his wife; and yet this is not recorded any where in the Jewish laws, as far as I can find, that the women had such a right. Indeed, were the law which gives the permission all on one side, it would be unjust and oppressive; but where it is equally balanced, the right being the same on each side, it must serve as a mutual check, and prevent those evils it is intended to cure. Among the Jews there are several instances of the women having taken other men, even during the life of their own husbands. Nor do we find any law by which they were punished. Divorce never should be permitted but on this ground - “The parties are miserable together, and they are both perfectly willing to be separated.” Then, if every thing else be proper, let them go different ways, that they may not ruin both themselves and their hapless offspring.
And they brought young children - See on Matthew 19:13-15 (note).
And he took them up in his arms - One of the Itala reads in sinu suo - “in his bosom.” Jesus Christ loves little children; and they are objects of his most peculiar care. Who can account for their continual preservation and support, while exposed to so many dangers, but on the ground of a peculiar and extraordinary providence?
And blessed them - Then, though little children, they were capable of receiving Christ‘s blessing. If Christ embraced them, why should not his Church embrace them? Why not dedicate them to God by baptism? - whether that be performed by sprinkling, washing, or immersion; for we need not dispute about the mode: on this point let every one be fully persuaded in his own mind. I confess it appears to me grossly heathenish and barbarous, to see parents who profess to believe in that Christ who loves children, and among them those whose creed does not prevent them from using infant baptism, depriving their children of an ordinance by which no soul can prove that they cannot be profited, and, through an unaccountable bigotry or carelessness, withholding from them the privilege of even a nominal dedication to God; and yet these very persons are ready enough to fly for a minister to baptize their child when they suppose it to be at the point of death! It would be no crime to pray that such persons should never have the privilege of hearing, My father! or, My mother! from the lips of their own child. See on Matthew 3:6 (note), and on Mark 16:16 (note).
There came one running - See the case of this rich young man largely explained on Matthew 19:16 (note), etc.
Then Jesus, beholding him - Looking earnestly, εμβλεψας , or affectionately upon him, loved him, because of his youth, his earnestness, and his sincerity.
One thing thou lackest - What was that? A heart disengaged from the world, and a complete renunciation of it and its concerns, that he might become a proper and successful laborer in the Lord‘s vineyard. See Matthew 19:21. To say that it was something else he lacked, when Christ explains here his own meaning, is to be wise above what is written.
And he was sad at that saying - This young man had perhaps been a saint, and an eminent apostle, had he been poor! From this, and a multitude of other cases, we may learn that it is oftentimes a misfortune to be rich: but who is aware of this? - and who believes it?
And the Gospel‘s - Read, for the sake of the Gospel. I have with Griesbach adopted ἑνεκεν , for the sake, on the authority of BCDEGHKMS, V, sixty others, and almost all the versions.
In this time - Εν τῳ καιρῳ τουτῳ , In this very time. Though Jews and Gentiles have conspired together to destroy both me and you, my providence shall so work that nothing shall be lacking while any thing is necessary.
With persecutions - For while you meet with nothing but kindness from true Christians, you shall be despised, and often afflicted, by those who are enemies to God and goodness; but, for your comfort, ye shall have in the world to come, αιωνι τῳ ερχομενῳ , the coming world, (that world which is on its way to meet you), eternal life.
And he took again the twelve - Or thus: For having again taken the twelve, etc. I translate και for, which signification it often bears; see Luke 1:22; John 12:35, and elsewhere. This gives the reason of the wonder and fear of the disciples, For he began to tell them on the way, what was to befall him. This sense of και , I find, is also noticed by Rosenmuller. See on Matthew 20:17-19 (note).
And James and John - come unto him - The request here mentioned, Matthew says, Matthew 20:20, was made by Salome their mother; the two places may be easily reconciled thus: - The mother introduced them, and made the request as if from herself; Jesus knowing whence it had come, immediately addressed himself to James and John, who were standing by; and the mother is no farther concerned in the business. See the note on Matthew 20:20.
In thy glory - In the kingdom of thy glory - three MSS. Which kingdom they expected to be established on earth.
And be baptized - Or, be baptized. Instead of και and η or, is the reading of BCDL, five others, Coptic, Armenian, later Syriac in the margin, Vulgate, all the Itala, and Origen. See the note on Matthew 20:22.
Is not mine to give - See on Matthew 20:23 (note).
When the ten heard it - See Matthew 20:24-28.
Blind Bartimeus - בר (bar) in Syriac signifies son. It appears that he was thus named because Timeus, Talmeus or Talmai, was the name of his father, and thus the son would be called Bar-talmeus, or Bartholomew. Some suppose υἱος Τιμαιου , the son of Timeus, to be an interpolation. Bartimeus the son of Timeus, ὁ τυφλος , The blind man. It was because he was the most remarkable that this evangelist mentions him by name, as a person probably well known in those parts.
And he, casting away his garment - He cast off his outward covering, a blanket, or loose piece of cloth, the usual upper garment of an Asiatic mendicant, which kept him from the inclemency of the weather, that he might have nothing to hinder him from getting speedily to Christ. If every penitent were as ready to throw aside his self-righteousness and sinful incumbrances, as this blind man was to throw aside his garment, we should have fewer delays in conversions than we now have; and all that have been convinced of sin would have been brought to the knowledge of the truth. The reader will at least pardon the introduction of the following anecdote, which may appear to some as illustrative of the doctrine grounded on this text.
Lord, that I might, etc. - The Codex Bezae, and some copies of the Itala, have, Κυριε ῥαββει , O Lord, my teacher.
Followed Jesus in the way - Instead of τῳ Ιησου , Jesus, several eminent critics read αυτω , him. This is the reading of ABCDL, fourteen others, Coptic, Ethiopic, Armenian, later Syriac in the margin, two Persic, Vulgate, all the Itala, and Origen once. Jesus is the common reading; but this sacred name having occurred so immediately before, there could be no necessity for repeating it here, nor would the repetition have been elegant.
Saturday, March 8th, 2014
the Last Week after Epiphany
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