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Bible Commentaries

F.B. Meyer's 'Through the Bible' Commentary

Mark 1

Verses 1-20

the Beginning of Jesus’ Ministry

Mark 1:1-41.1.20

The ministry of John the Baptist, Mark 1:1-41.1.8 . Always the message of John precedes that of Jesus Christ; first the changed attitude of the will, then faith. The greatness of the Baptist revealed itself in his humility. He saw what we must see, that a negative religion, symbolized by water, is not enough: we need to be set on fire.

The opening pages of Christ’s public life, Mark 1:9-41.1.20 . Jesus was recognized by the Baptist, who beheld the opened heavens and the descending Spirit. If the Lord was thus anointed ere He commenced His life-work, how much more must we be! Hast thou become united with Him in His death, made one with Him in His resurrection, and anointed by that same Spirit? Then be sure that thou, too, must be tempted. Sons of men must go the way of the Son of man, now under the opened heavens, then tempted of the devil; on one side the wild beasts, on the other the angels; now driven to loneliness, and then to the crowded street of the cities, there to gather disciples by the energy and beauty of a victorious life.

Verses 21-39

the Helper of the Needy

Mark 1:21-41.1.39

The word straightway is typical of our Lord’s life. It occurs at least eleven times in this chapter (r.v.), and is the keynote of Mark’s Gospel, which is pre-eminently the gospel of service. The ancient symbol for this Gospel was the ox. There is comparatively little said in it, as in Matthew, about the King; or, as in Luke, about the details of Jesus’ humanity; or, as in John, about His divine sonship. There are suggestions of all these, but emphasis is laid on the unresting labors of Jesus, who went about doing good. In illustration of this trait in the Master’s life, the evangelist narrates the proceedings of two typical days, the one at the beginning, the other at the close of His ministry. The first typical day is recorded in this chapter, Mark 1:21-41.1.38 . The morning was spent in the synagogue, where at the close of the service the demon was cast out; the afternoon witnessed the healing of Peter’s wife’s mother; the evening beheld the throng at the door, whom he healed. Early next day He had gone forth for prayer, and forthwith started on a mission throughout all Galilee. The second typical day is recorded in Mark 11:20-41.11.33 ; Mark 12:1-41.12.44 ; Mark 13:1-41.13.37 .

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Bibliographical Information
Meyer, Frederick Brotherton. "Commentary on Mark 1". "F. B. Meyer's 'Through the Bible' Commentary". 1914.