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The Question of Divorce. The Rich Young Man. Blind Bartimæus
1-12. The question of divorce (Matthew 19:3). See on that passage, and on Matthew 5:32. St. Mark represents our Lord as prohibiting divorce absolutely, without mentioning any exception.
1. See on Matthew 19:1: cp. Luke 17:11.
13-16. The blessing of little children (Matthew 19:13; Luke 18:15). See on Mt.
17-22. The rich young man (Matthew 19:16; Luke 18:8). See on Mt.
17. Good Master] Mk and Lk represent the young man as saying, ’Good Master, what shall I do that I may inherit eternal life?’ and Jesus as replying, ’Why callest thou me good?’ etc.; whereas Mt represents the young man as saying, ’Master, what good thing shall I do, that I may have eternal life?’ and Jesus as replying, ’Why askest thou me concerning that which is good?’ etc. (RV). The true version is clearly that of Mk and Lk. The author of Mt (or perhaps an early scribe, for there is considerable reason for thinking that the original text of Mt agreed with Mk and Lk) altered the text slightly, to prevent the reader from supposing that Christ denied that He was good.
18. Why callest, etc.] RV ’Why callest thou me good? None is good save one, even God.’ Since Jesus declares Himself, and is repeatedly declared by others to be sinless (John 6:61; John 8:46; John 14:30; 1 Peter 2:22; 1 John 3:5, etc.), this cannot mean that He was not good, but that for some reason or other on the present occasion He refused the title. (1) According to some He refused it, because in the sense in which it was offered, it was unequal to His merits and His claims. The young man, they think, called Him good, in the sense in which he would have called any eminent Rabbi good, whereupon our Lord pointedly remarked that only God is good, meaning, ’If you call me good in the same sense in which God is good, I am willing to accept it, but if you call me good in a merely human sense I reject it as insufficient.’ (2) The other view is that the human nature of Christ, although ’sinless’ during the whole of His earthly life, was not ’good’ in the absolute sense. He advanced in ’goodness.’ Passing through the different stages of a truly human experience, He acquired by conscious effort the virtues proper to each. He learned obedience (Hebrews 5:8), and was perfected through sufferings (Hebrews 2:10). He was truly tempted as we are, yet without sin (Hebrews 2:18; Hebrews 4:15), and maintained His virtue by prayer and constant watchfulness (Hebrews 5:7; Matthew 14:23.). God, however, is ’good’ absolutely. He can neither be tempted of evil nor advance in goodness. It is only as God, not as man, that Christ is ’good’ in the absolute sense.
23-31. The perils of riches. The reward of those who despise them (Matthew 19:24; Luke 18:24). See on Mt.
30. For their temporal losses they will have a hundredfold return in spiritual blessings, including holy fellowship with saints and angels. ’Houses’ and ’lands’ perhaps stand for rich spiritual possessions. If their literal meaning is to be pressed, our Lord indicates that, owing to the prevailing spirit of brotherly love, which issued in the apostolic communism, Christians would enjoy their houses and lands in common, as members of one family.
Persecutions] A startling word in the midst of a shower of blessings. Yet persecutions are often, to a Christian, the greatest blessing of all.
32-34. The passion predicted (Matthew 20:17; Luke 18:31). See on Mt.
35-45. The ambition of James and John (Matthew 20:20). See on Mt.
46-52. Blind Bartimæus (Matthew 20:29; Luke 18:35). See on Mt. The name of the blind man (Bartimæus lit. ’son of Timæs’) is given only by Mk.
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Dummelow, John. "Commentary on Mark 10". "Dummelow's Commentary on the Bible". https://www.studylight.org/
the First Week of Advent