Lectionary Calendar
Saturday, July 20th, 2024
the Week of Proper 10 / Ordinary 15
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Bible Commentaries
Mark 10

Concordant Commentary of the New TestamentConcordant NT Commentary

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Verses 1-14

40 See Mat_12:30 ; Luk_11:23 .

41 See Mat_10:40-42 .

42 Compare Mat_18:6 .

43 Compare Mat_5:30 . See Deu_13:6-11 Isa_33:14 ; Isa_66:24 .

45 Gehenna, the valley of Hinnom just below Jerusalem, must not be confounded with the lake of fire, or Tartarus, or the unseen, commonly called "hell" or hades. Its fire and worms were quite as literal as can be, for the city offal was burned there. No living beings were cast into this incinerator. It is the worms, which feed on the carcases of criminals, who do not die. The fire was kept burning at all times. This will be the place where bodies of executed malefactors will be cast during the kingdom era.

49 Since the kingdom has been rejected, entrance into it is necessarily a path of judgment. Salt is a preservative. During the kingdom era corruption will be stayed. The salt that counteracts the corruption of that day will be fire, a judgment. As already elaborated, nothing that offends can enter that kingdom. It must be judged. If not, it will drag down those who harbor it into

Gehenna and its fires.

47-48 Compare Mat_5:29 .

49 See Lev_2:13 ; Eze_43:24 .

50 See Mat_5:1 3; Luk_14:34-35 ; Col_4:6 .

1-12 Compare Mat_19:1-12 .

1 Our Lord is now in Perea, over which Herod held sway. Herod had dismissed his wife for no other reason than that he wanted to marry Herodias, his brother's wife. It was John the baptist's protest against this which really cost him his life. Hence the Pharisees hope to put the Lord on the horns of a dilemma. If He countenances Herod's act, that could easily be used against Him. If He condemns it, that could be used to inflame the Herodians, if not Herod himself. But the Lord is equal to the occasion. He is greater than Moses. He knew the hardness of their hearts. He, therefore, revokes the law, and bases the union of man and wife on the original creation. Adam was both male and female in one body when he was first created ( Gen_1:27 ). Later God took from Adam, not a rib, but an angular vault to build the woman. Marriage is the reversal of this. A male and a female are joined together to make one complete human being, as Adam was at his creation. God, Who took Eve out of Adam, and thus made the separation, yokes them together again in marriage. They become a physiological unit. No man should destroy such a union. Only one cause was given by our Lord as a ground for divorce ( Mat_5:32 ). In this day of grace even this is not valid. Only desertion by an unbelieving husband or wife breaks the bonds of matrimony ( 1Co_7:15 ). The reason for this lies in the character of this economy. It is the opposite of the administration of a stony law over hard hearts. God is now dealing in pure, unadulterated grace, which forgives offenses and pleads for reconciliation in the most desperate circumstances. This should be reflected in all our social relations, especially in the marriage bond.

4 See Deu_24:1 ; Mat_5:31-32 .

6 See Gen_1:27 ; Gen_5:2 .

7 See Gen_2:24 LXX 1Co_6:16 ; Eph_5:31 .

12 See Luk_16:18 ; Rom_7:3 ; 1Co_7:10-11 .

13-16 Compare Mat_19:13-15 ; Luk_18:15-17 .

13 Children were not supposed to be capable of understanding Him, hence, hardly candidates for the kingdom. But they had the very essential which was so lacking among His disciples at this time. They had implicit faith in what they were told, and trusted those who told them. The disciples, alas, were also immature in understanding. They did not apprehend the need of the cross which He was seeking to sink into their hearts. Yet they lacked the child-like faith which believes, though it cannot comprehend.

20 The incident of the rich man contains the line of thought suggested by the little children. He was their opposite. He had confidence in him self, in his accomplishments, in his ideas. He wanted to work his way into the kingdom. As a matter of fact what he had done so far had resulted in a condition quite the opposite of the kingdom. His many acquisitions, the result of his activities, meant so much loss to his poorer neighbors. He had been anything but good to them. Had the kingdom come at that moment, he must have lost all except his own allotment. If then, he really had faith in that kingdom, and wished to enter it and enjoy eonian life, the only practical way to prove it would be to do all he could to bring about kingdom conditions. It would be absolutely impossible to hold on to his lands in that day, for it will be redistributed according to each one's need. The disciples in the Pentecostal era acted on the principles of the kingdom. They did not sell their own allotments, but disposed of the allotments of others which they had acquired, using the proceeds to help those who were in need ( Act_2:45 ).

Verses 15-40

15 See Mat_18:2-3:17-22

17-20 Compare Mat_19:16-22 ; Luk_18:18 - Luk 23:19

19 See Exo_20:12-16:21

21 See Mat_6:19-21 ; Luk_12:33-34 ; Luk_16:9:22-27

22-27 Compare Mat_19:23-26 ; Luk_18:24-27 .

23 All human kingdoms have a high place for those who have wealth. They have no difficulty in entering. Indeed, it has come to the point where the wealth of the world is the controlling factor in government. Policies are dictated, laws are passed, treaties are made, wars are fought, all to protect invested capital or to promote the accumulation of wealth. The majority of mankind have become the slaves of the minority, who hold them by bonds of gold. There is no human remedy. In God's kingdom all this will be reversed. No rich man, as such, will enter, for his riches will have been destroyed in the previous judgment era, or will not be recognized. But the greatest hindrance is the lack of confidence in Christ.

24 See Job_31:24 ; Psa_49:6-9 ; 1Ti_6:17-19 .

27 See Jer_32:17 ; Luk_1:37 .

28-31 Compare Mat_19:27-30 ; Luk_18:28-30 .

30 This has proven a stumbling block to many, who seek to apply it to the present grace. They have left all, but do not receive either a hundred fold or indeed a hundredth part of what they have lost. The reference is strictly confined to the Jewish disciples in the era in which the kingdom was proclaimed. Alter Pentecost the disciples had all things in common, so that all had an interest in and enjoyment of hundreds of houses and fields ( Act_2:44 ; Act_4:32 ), being bound by more than natural ties to thousands of fellow believers, who cared for their welfare, so that there were none indigent among them ( Act_4:34 ). There was a daily dispensation which took in all, even the widows who might have been in sore straits under any other dispensation. But today there is no temporal profit in standing true. Our greatest privilege is to suffer. Our reward is in the heavens. It is most mischievous to "appropriate" such promises, for they cannot be fulfilled. The motive that underlies them is utterly foreign to the truth for today. Present advantage is not a bait to catch the unbeliever now, and future reward is not in lands, but in the celestial realms.

31 See Luk_13:30

31 Those who forsook all their worldly properties and prospects were the poorest and last, yet these are the ones who will become first in the kingdom. Even in the Pentecostal era this was true. Peter could truly say "Silver and gold I do not possess" ( Act_3:6 ). No one had less of wealth. The high priests controlled great stores of treasure beside their personal fortunes. Yet who was lower than they? Material and spiritual values are usually in inverse ratio.

32-34 Compare Mat_20:17-19 ; Luk_18:31-34

35-41 Compare Mat_20:20-24 .

35 There were only two places of great honor next to the king in an eastern monarchy. One was at his right and the other at his left. But among our Lord's apostles three were foremost and privileged. These were Peter, James, and John. This is evidently a piece of petty diplomacy on the part of John and James, intended to prevent Peter from getting the first place. Such selfish insistence completely dissipates the usual conception of the "sons of thunder", as our Lord called them. John was not at all the meek, mild, gentle, amiable character he is popularly supposed to be. He was loud, egotistic, selfish. His writings do not reveal his natural characteristics, but rather the power of grace to counteract them. Would the apostle of love seek to supplant Peter? Yet the exquisiteness of that same grace is seen when it takes the boastings of the flesh and makes them good. They were not able to drink the cup which He was drinking. Yet the spirit later made them able. James was assassinated by Herod ( Act_12:2 ). It is quite possible that this passage supports the tradition that John also was killed by the Jews. The fact that his written ministry applies to the time of the Lord's return does not allow of a record of his death in the Scriptures. See Joh_21:20 . What makes this request so terribly atrocious is its utter antagonism to the Spirit of Christ,

at this time.

Verses 41-52

41 The other apostles are no better than the sons of Zebedee. They all want place, power, prestige. They little know the kind of kingdom they are to enter. They dream of some oriental despotism in which the whims of the ruling class, and their desires, are the only law. But in the kingdom all sovereignty will be based on service. None will rule there who have not suffered. They will rule the people as a shepherd tends his sheep. They will lead them and feed them and protect them. So the great King and Shepherd served them when He suffered for their ransom.

42-45 Compare Mat_20:25-28 ; Luk_22:24-27 .

46-52 Compare Mat_20:29-34 ; Luk_18:35-43 . See also Mat_9:27-31 .

46 There were probably four blind men healed at Jericho, one as He was nearing the city ( Luk_18:35 ) Bar Timeus, at His going out, and two more at about the same time ( Mat_20:29 ). To the spiritual mind there is a delightful harmony between all our Lord's words and ways. He did not go down to Jericho, the city of the curse ( Jos_6:26 ) until He had been rejected. It is most fitting that He should pass through it on this journey. The contrast between the single blind man before He entered the city and the three after leaving it is very suggestive. So far as we know, only Mary, of all His disciples, had her eyes opened to the truth that He was to enter the place of the curse and die ( Mat_26:12 ). But, after He had passed through, the eyes of many were opened. To this very day an accursed Christ a suffering Saviour, is distasteful to the human heart. As a Leader or Example He is welcome and is accorded the place supreme among the sons of Adam. As such, He supports the self-righteous attitude of the sons of Cain. They are glad to enlist under His banner, as one like Him, ready to fight an external foe. But to find that foe in themselves, to see in His humiliation and shame an intimation of their own, and acknowledge His accursed death as their deserts, requires a miracle on God's part greater in its way than any He ever wrought. And he who knows the power of this in his own heart cannot doubt the lesser miracles of Holy Writings.

1-7 Compare Mat_21:1-7 ; Luk_19:28-36 .

1 Strange as it may seem, there are only seven recorded visits of Christ to Jerusalem. And it was the temple rather than the city which drew Him for He came only to fulfill the law, and to keep the festivals. The first was His own dedication to God ( Luk_2:22 ). The second was at twelve years of age, when He became "a son of the law" ( Luk_2:42 ). The third and fourth were for the Passover festivals at the beginning of His public ministry. Then we find Him in the temple for the festival of Tabernacles ( Joh_7:2 ; Joh_7:10 ) and Dedications ( Joh_10:22 ). The last occasion, here referred to, was for the Passover festival. Only on this last visit is He spoken of as being in the city itself, once at Bethesda ( Joh_5:2 ) and again in the upper room ( Mar_14:15 ). At His first visit a sacrifice was offered for Him, at the last He Himself became the Sacrifice.

2 The animal on which our Lord is mounted is always in keeping with His immediate concerns. When He will come forth to battle with His enemies He will be seated on a white horse at once a symbol of exalted rank and of war ( Rev_19:11 ). Indeed, His very lack of a mount on His journeys is in harmony with His humiliation. Now He, for the first time in His career exercising the right which is accorded to every oriental king, commandeers a colt for His entry into Jerusalem. But kings do not ride on colts. Nothing less than a chariot or a white horse befits their rank. As the prophets predicted, He is humble, riding on the foal of an ass ( Zec_9:9 ). His glory is in His humility. His majesty is in His meekness. But there is more than lowliness. There is salvation, or rather redemption. The firstling of an ass must be ransomed with a flockling ( Exo_13:13 ). The animal He rode was a type of the ransomed who supported Him in His humiliation. Hence He does not go to the palace of the king, but to the sanctuary. There must be redemption before there can be a righteous reign. Herein lies the point of the whole picture. As King He comes with salvation.

8-10 Compare Mat_21:8-9 ; Luk_19:37-44 ; Joh_12:12-16 .

9 See Psa_118:25-26 .

10 See Psa_148:1 .

Bibliographical Information
"Commentary on Mark 10". Concordant Commentary of the New Testament. https://www.studylight.org/commentaries/eng/aek/mark-10.html. 1968.
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