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Lange's Commentary on the Holy Scriptures: Critical, Doctrinal, and Homiletical
Grand Preparation. Christs kingly appearing by the side of John the Baptist. First Victory and First Withdrawal. The virtual Decision of all subsequent Conflicts and Victories ( Mark 1:1-13).
JOHN THE BAPTIST
(Parallels: Matthew 3:1-12; Luke 3:1-20; John 1:19-28)
1The beginning of the Gospel of Jesus Christ, the Son of God: 2As it is written in the prophets, [FN1] Behold, I send my messenger before thy face, which shall prepare thy 3 way before thee; [FN2] The [A] voice of one crying in the wilderness [desert], Prepare ye the way of the Lord, make his paths straight 4 John did baptize in the wilderness, and preach the baptism of repentance for the remission of sins 5 And there went out unto him all the land of Judea, and they of Jerusalem [the Jerusalemites], and were all[FN3] baptizedof [by] him in the river of Jordan, confessing their sins 6 And John was clothed with camels hair, and with a girdle of a skin about his loins; and he did eat locusts 7 and wild honey; And [he] preached, saying, There cometh one mightier than I after me, the latchet of whose shoes I am not worthy to stoop down and unloose 8 I indeed have baptized you with water: but he shall baptize you with the Holy Ghost.
EXEGETICAL AND CRITICAL
Mark 1:1. The beginning of the Gospel.The superscription includes from Mark 1:1-3, closing with the words, make his paths straight. The Evangelist designs by both passages ( Mark 1:2 from behold, etc, and Mark 1:3) to indicate the forerunnership of John. Hence the beginning goes on, according to Meyer, to Mark 1:8, and not, as Ewald says, to Mark 1:15. There is an analogous superscription in Matthew 1:1. When Mark points to John the Baptist as the beginning of the Gospel, he refers to its whole development, and this logically leads to and includes the narrative of the Infancy. But he does not include in his design generally, processes and means: hence John also must come upon the scene as the mature man. In this concise and sudden introduction, the Evangelist himself appears before us in all his own peculiarity. Indeed, this beginning of the Gospel was in the apostolical age the customary commencement of evangelical tradition, and as such always accompanied the apostolical preaching. It always started with the appearance of John the Baptist. The history of the Infancy and the doctrine of the Logos followed later for the initiated, the believers.Of Jesus Christ (genitive of the object), the Son of God.Matthew: The Son of David. In Mark, the theocratic relation of Jesus recedes, as he wrote especially for Gentile Christians.
Mark 1:3. In the wilderness.See on Matthew 4:1. So also Luke 4:1.The baptism of repentance.Baptism as not only obliging to change of mind (μετάνοια), but also exhibiting and symbolizing it.For the remission of sins.Meyer rightly: To be received from the Messiah; and not, as Hoffmann in the Schriftbeweis asserts, as assured by Johns baptism. Thus it denotes the preparatory reference of Johns baptism to Christ, or to the baptism of the Holy Ghost.
Mark 1:5. All the land of Judea, and (even) all they of Jerusalem.Peculiar to Mark, is this strong expression. But it is so far not hyperbolical, as the Baptist had at this crisis overpowered and led captive, not only the consciousness of the people, but that of the hierarchy also.
Mark 1:6. And John was clothed.See on Matthew 3:4.
Mark 1:7. There cometh one mightier than I after me.Present. Decision and vigor of the Baptist, reflecting itself in the view of the Evangelist. Christ is already in the company.To stoop down.Pointing to his self-depreciation and humility. In this picturesqueness, peculiar to Mark.
Mark 1:8. With the Holy Ghost.As Mark does not record the severity of Johns preaching, and his announcement of the judicial work of Jesus, he omits the clause and with fire. Thus the omission proves nothing against the genuineness of the clause.
DOCTRINAL AND ETHICAL
1. Jesus the Christ, and Christ the Son of God, in the full apostolical meaning. Thus the Gospel of the manifestation of the Mighty One of God is described and opened.
2. The Baptist is here, as in the Gospel of John,, Mark 1, the representative and final expression of the whole Old Testament. But the Old Testament itself, terminating in him, becomes one great forerunner, and the voice of the Spirit of God in the wilderness, which proclaims the manifestation of Christ; that Isaiah, it becomes a compendious introduction to the original New Testament, springing from heaven.
3. John appears here as at once summing up his office as forerunner: 1. Himself the preparer of the way; 2. and the voice summoning to prepare the way. For the prophecies of Isaiah and Malachi, see on Matthew 3:3.
4. The great baptism of John: its seemingly slight, but yet great and decisive, results.
5. John in the desert as a hermit; John arousing the land: preludes of the Lords self-humiliation and withdrawals, and of His victorious comings forth into the world.
HOMILETICAL AND PRACTICAL
The beginning of the Gospel of Christ in the manifestation of the Baptist: 1. In his appearance, as described by the prophets; 2. in his vocation (preaching and baptism); 3. in his demeanor; 4. in his alarming influence; 5. in his reference to Christ.The two Testaments, as they concurrently glorify Christ as the Lord.How far the Lord will have a way prepared for Him, and how far He makes a path for Himself.Repentance and faith a miraculous path through the wilderness.The confession of sin, and its significance for piety: 1. Oftentimes, alas! nothing, or less than nothing; 2. oftentimes very much; 3. oftentimes everything.Johns great renunciation of the world, the silent condition of his great influence.The hermit and the shaken land.Collectedness in secret, victory in the world.The two strong men, with whom the kingdom of heaven breaks into the world: 1. John, the strong man; and2. Christ, the stronger than he.The anointing of the Holy Ghost: the consummation of the baptism of Christ.The greatness of John the Baptist, that he always, and in all things, points out of and beyond himself: 1. A preparer of the way, who summons his people to prepare their own way; 2. baptizing, and preaching the baptism of repentance; 3. the overcomer of the people, who predicts Christ as overcoming himself; 4. pointing from his own water-baptism to the baptism of the Spirit.The baptism of water and the baptism of Spirit.The heroic constancy and decision of John in his work, a symbol for all believers.
Starke:Thus the last messenger of the old covenant points to the first of the new. Thus truth agrees with truth.The New Testament looks back to the Old.The wilderness in which the Baptist appeared, a shadow of this world.Word and sacrament the two essential elements of the preaching office.Preachers furnished with the Spirit and power may have great concourse around them; but Israel soon becomes weary of the manna, John 6:66.
Gerlach:Johns baptism as the conclusion, and consequently also the epitome, of all that the legal economy contained in itself.It was not itself to communicate forgiveness of sins, but prepare the way for it.Even Christians should not despise such preparations through the law for the Gospel.In times of great declension in morals, the servants of the Lord appear with a special self-renunciation even in external things. So the ancient Elijah, 2 Kings 1:8.Gossner:A preacher should be only a messenger who proclaims the coming of the Lord and Saviour.W. L. Bauer:The man of humility, who aimed only to prepare the way.
FN#1 - Mark 1:2.We regard the testimony of Irenæus and other fathers, with Codd. A, P, as sufficient to establish the reading ἐν τοῖς προφήταις, against the reading of Codd. B, D, L, and others, ἐν Ησαῖ̓α τῷ προφήτῃ, which Griesbach and most recent critics would prefer on their authority. That the text was changed into the form which it has in our reading is scarcely conceivable; on the other hand, the reading in Esaias might have been inserted from the second citation through an inexact reminiscence, especially as Mark is not elsewhere accustomed to quote minutely ( Mark 11:17; Mark 12:10; Mark 14:27). If the reading in Esaias the prophet be preferred, the passage of Malachi must be regarded as a further development of the main passage in Isaiah, which is made prominent as the first announcement of the forerunner.
FN#2 - Mark 1:2.Εμπροσθέν σου is not sufficiently supported.
FN#3 - Mark 1:5.The πάντες belongs to the inhabitants of Jerusalem, according to the best MS, and does not come after ἐβαπτίζοντο.
(Parallels: Matthew 3:13 to Matthew 4:11; Luke 3:21 to Luke 4:13; John 1:29-42)
9And it came to pass in those days, that Jesus came from Nazareth of Galilee, and was baptized of [by] John in Jordan 10 And straightway coming up out of [from, απο 4] the water, he saw the heavens opened [parted], and the Spirit, like a dove, descending upon him 11 And there came a voice from heaven, saying, Thou art my beloved Song of Solomon, in whom[FN5] I am well pleased 12 And immediately the Spirit driveth him into the wilderness 13 And he was there in the wilderness forty days tempted of Satan; and was with the wild beasts; and the angels ministered unto him.
EXEGETICAL AND CRITICAL
Mark 1:10. Straightway, εὐθέως.Marks watchword, constantly recurring from this time onwards. But here it means that Jesus only in a formal sense submitted to the Acts, and therefore did not linger in it. Much in the same way as Luke hastily passes over the circumcision of our Lord.He saw the heavens.Not John (as Erasmus and others), but Jesus is the subject of the seeing (Meyer): yet the concurrent and mediate beholding of the Baptist is not excluded; see John 1. That the occurrence should not have been only an external one, but also an internal (Leben Jesu, ii1, S182), Meyer calls fantasy. But it is certain that without the fantasy of theological spiritual insight we cannot penetrate the internal meaning of the text, and must fall now into mere dogmatism, and now into rationalistic perversions.
Mark 1:12. And immediately the Spirit driveth Him.Εκβάλλει is stronger than the ἀνήχθη of Matthew and the ἤγετο of Luke.
Mark 1:13. And He was there forty days tempted of Satan.According to Meyer and others, Mark (with Luke) is here out of harmony with Matthew. This difficulty springs from neglecting to distinguish, 1. between real difference and less exactitude, and2. between the being tempted generally of Satan, and the being tempted in a specifically pregnant and decisive manner. But it is evident that Mark places the crisis of Christs victory already in the baptism. That act of victory over self, and humiliation under the baptism of John, had already assured Him the victory over the now impotent assaults of Satan.With the wild beasts.The older expositors find hi this circumstance a counterpart of the serpent in paradise. Starke:The wilderness was probably the great Arabian desert, and Satan attacked Him also through the beasts. Usteri and others:Christ as the restorer of paradise, and conqueror of the beasts. De Wette:This is a mere pictorial embellishment. Meyer:He is threatened in a twofold manner: Satan tempts Him, and the beasts surround Him. But this is a misleading view. A threefold relation of Jesus is here depicted, 1. to Satan, 2. to the beasts, 3. to the angels; and it is arbitrary to separate the second from the third, and make it the antithesis of the first. There is nothing in the μετά to justify this.The angels.Not merely fortuitous individual angels. By the individuals which minister to Him, the angel-world is represented. Meyer:By the ministering we are not to understand a serving with food, but a sustaining support against Satan and the beasts. This is more than fantasy.The theory concerning the various forms of the history of the temptation, of which Mark is supposed to have used the earliest and simplest, we pass over, as flowing from the well-known scholastic misapprehension of this Evangelists original view and exhibition of the Gospel.Ex ungue leonem! This holds good of Christ, as He is introduced by Mark; and in another sense it holds good of the beginning of the Gospel itself. Remark the expressions: οἱ Ιεροσολυμῖται πάντεςκύψας λῦσαιεἶδε σχιζομένους τοὺς οὐρανούς, etc.
DOCTRINAL AND ETHICAL
1. The self-denial and self-renunciation with which Christ, the Son of God, had lived in the seclusion of Nazareth, was the condition and source of that strength in which He subjected Himself to the baptism of John in the Jordan. This act of subjection sealed His submission under the law, His historical fellowship of suffering with His people, and His passion. The baptism of Christ was consequently the pledge of His perfect self-sacrifice. Hence it was in principle the decision of His conflict and His victory; and therefore it was crowned with His glorification. In this one act there was a consummation of His consciousness as God, of His consciousness as Redeemer, and His consciousness as Victor.
2. Christ really decided, in His baptism, His victory over Satan. He went into the wilderness and made it a paradise. The serpent in this paradise assaults Him, but cannot hurt Him; the wild beasts sink peaceably under His majesty; and the angels of heaven surround and serve Him.
3. John is in the wilderness, and Satan tempts him not. Jesus is led up from the wilderness into the wilderness,that Isaiah, into the deepest wildness of the wilderness (this being the residence of the demons, see Com. on Matthew 4),and Satan comes down to assault Him there. But the Evangelist deems it superfluous to remark that Jesus overcame Satan. After what had just preceded, this was self-understood. Moreover, it is in the casting-out of the devils, that Mark presents to us Christs concrete victories over Satan. Yet this victory is intimated in the fact that He maintained His abode in the wilderness for forty days in spite of all the assaults of the devil, and that in that very wilderness the angels ministered to Him. The incarnate Son of God could hold His heavenly court in the place which Satan preëminently arrogated for himself. The Lords relation to His surroundings is threefold1. It is a sovereign and inimical one towards Satan, whose temptations appear only as impotent assaults2. It is a sovereign and peaceful one towards the beasts: they dare not hunt the Lord of creation, nor do they flee before Him. Jesus takes away the curse also from the irrational creation ( Romans 8). According to the same Mark, who places this circumstance at the outset of his Gospel, Jesus commanded at its close that His Gospel should be preached to every creature. See Daniel in the den of lions. Comp. Gthes Das Kind und der Löwe. 3. A sovereign and friendly one towards the angel-world. The world of the angels is subjected to the dominion of Christ: Ephesians 1:21; Colossians 2:10; Hebrews 1.
HOMILETICAL AND PRACTICAL
The abode of Jesus in Nazareth, or His self-humiliation, the foundation of all the Divine victories in His life, Philippians 2:6 seq.The greatness of Christ by the side of the greatness of John.Even in humiliation Christ is above John, in that He voluntarily submits to his baptism.With the submission of Christ to the baptism of John, and what it signified, the whole course of His life, and also His victory over Satan in the wilderness, were decided. Hence His tarrying in the wilderness was the festival before a new career.The perfected unfolding of the consciousness of Christ at His baptism, in its eternal significance.With the self-consciousness of Christ was perfected the consciousness of the Son of God and of the Son of man at one and the same time: Thus, 1. the consciousness of His eternity in His Godhead, and2. of His redeeming vocation in His humanity.The significance of perfect self-knowledge in self-consciousness: 1. Finding self, 2. gaining self, 3. deciding and dedicating self in God.The kindredness and difference between the development of the Redeemers consciousness and that of the sinner: 1. Kindredness: humiliation, exaltation2. Difference: a. Christs humiliation under the judgment of His brethren; b. the sinners under his own judgment;a. Christs exaltation through the contemplation of the communion of the Trinity; b. the sinners exaltation through faith in the fellowship of the Redeemer.As our consciousness, so our history: This holds good, a. of our true consciousness, b. of our false.The abode of the Baptist and of the Lord in the wilderness, a token of the destruction of the satanic kingdom.The inseparable connection between the divine dignity and the redeeming vocation of Christ: 1. He is Christ, and submits to Johns baptism of repentance; 2. He sees the heavens open upon Him, and enters into the depths of the wilderness to contend with Satan.The connection between the Lords baptism and His temptation.The connection between the humiliations and the exaltations of our Lord, an encouraging sign to all who are His.The connection between the invigorations and the new conflicts of Jesus, an admonitory sign to all who are His.Christ takes possession again of the wilderness (the world), without asking leave of Satan whose dwelling it is.Christ in the wilderness Ruler of all: 1. Of the abyss, whose assaults He regards not; 2. of the earth, whose wild beasts and passions sink to rest at His feet; 3. of the heavenly world, whose angels minister to Him.Wherefore the Lion of Judah, according to Mark, so often goes into the wilderness.How the Holy Spirit opens, with the manifestation of Christ, the decisive conflict with the spirit of apostasy.How the Holy Spirit, as the Spirit of might, drives the Lord into the decisive conflict. Even Christ did not go led by self into the contest.Christ changing the wilderness, despite Satan, into a paradise.Adam in paradise, and Christ among the beasts in the wilderness.
Starke:Humility the best adornment of teachers.Jesus of Nazareth (despised): So little does the great God make Himself, and thus at the same time constructs a ladder by which we may go up.Jesus sanctifies through His baptism the laver of regeneration in the word.Rejoice, O soul, in that God is well pleased with His Song of Solomon, and with thee also, who through Him art reconciled to God! But thou must in faith be made one with Him, Ephesians 1:5-6.As soon as we become Gods children, the Holy Ghost leads us; but the cross and temptation come forth-with.What the first Adam lost among and under the beasts, the Second Adam has asserted and regained among the beasts.A pious man has nothing to fear, among either wild beasts or bestial men.
Gerlach:How infinitely high does Christ stand above all human teachers, even those inspired by God.Schleiermacher:The legal excitement which John occasioned, and the excitement which Jesus enkindled.Gossner:Solitude and the wilderness have their temptations equally with the world.Baur:No one is near to celebrate this victory, yet Gods angels are there to glorify Him.
FN#4 - Mark 1:10.The reading of the Received Text is ἀπό, which is also adopted by Scholz, and agrees, moreover, with Matthew 3:16. But Lachmann, Tischendorf, and Meyer, following B, D, L, and the Gothic Version, read ἐκ. Griesbach also favored this reading. The English Version out of accords with the latter reading, but not with the former. The use of the two prepositions is seen m Luke 2:4 : And Joseph also went up from (ἀπό) Galilee, out of (ἐκ) the city of Nazareth, &c. Beyond doubt, remarks Winer, ἐκ indicates the closest connection; ὑπό one less strict; παρά and more especially ἀπό, one still more distant.Ed.]
FN#5 - Mark 1:11.After B, D, &c, Lachmann and Tischendorf read ἐν σοί, in Thee.
Royal Appearance of Christ after the Baptist. His Conflicts and Victories in Galilee, in the Old Jewish Church ( Mark 1:14 to Mark 9:50)
ANNOUNCEMENT OF THE KINGDOM OF HEAVEN
(Parallels: Luke 4:14-15; Matthew 4:12-17; John 4:43 seq.)
14Now, after that John was put in prison, Jesus came into Galilee, preaching the15 Gospel of the kingdom of God, And saying[FN6], The time is fulfilled, and the kingdom of God is at hand: repent ye, and believe [in] the Gospel.
EXEGETICAL AND CRITICAL
See on Matthew, Mark 4:12-17.
Mark 1:14. Jesus came.Ewald: He would not let the Baptists work fall to the ground. Meyer, on the contrary: that He might be safe; but see our Notes on Matthew in refutation of this. By the Baptists imprisonment the Baptist community in Israel was broken up; Jesus therefore saw occasion first to receive to Himself the poor people in Gentile Galilee, and that as the representative of John. John was put in prison by the Galilean prince; Jesus summons the people of this prince to repentance, and to faith in the Gospel: this is the true political retaliation, and the sacred way to salvation and the restoration of right.
Mark 1:15. The time, δ̔ καιρός.Not the period, but the right time; the great, fore-ordained, predicted and longed-for time of Messianic expectation; more closely defined by the following the kingdom of God is at hand. (See Galatians 4:4.) Repent, Μετανοεῖτε.See the lexicon for the original meaning and the various significations of the word. [It includes the ideas of reflection, afterthought, and change of mind, i.e, of judgment and of feeling, upon moral subjects, with particular reference to the character and conduct of the penitent himself. Alexander in loc.Ed.] Believe the Gospel, Πιστεύετε ἐν. Galatians 3:26; Ephesians 1:13.By this expression faith is more strongly emphasized. Entering into the Gospel, we have decisive faith. The object of faith in this view is the manifestation of the kingdom of God.
DOCTRINAL AND ETHICAL
1. From the still prayer of the wilderness, or from the new paradise in which Christ had conquered Satan, He has now come forth to endure all the individual conflicts of life for the founding of His eternal kingdom. Adam came from his paradise conquered, to endure in his descendants a constant succession of defeats.
2. As here, so everywhere, the economy of the Gospel takes the place of the economy of the law. The legal economy yields at last to the lawlessness of the world: the economy of faith and salvation triumphs over it even in yielding, and saves with itself also the ideality of the law.
3. An economy of the law which, in its tragical conflict with the spirit of the world, recognizes not the deliverance which is in the coming economy of salvation, like Elias ( 1 Kings 19:13), is thereby converted into an economy of carnal precepts, which finally combines with the world against the economy of salvation. But, on the other hand, true evangelical faith knows how to give its due to the precursory office of the law, just as Christ gave honor to His forerunner, John the Baptist.
4. Almost all the Jews of that time hoped for the kingdom of God; but it was a strange and unrecognized idea, that repentance and faith must be the entrance into it. Jesus begins with the promise, but immediately goes on to the conditions. Gerlach.
5. Mark, like Peter in his first and second Epistle, places the announcement of the kingdom of heaven at the head of his writing. The kingdom is his fundamental thought.
HOMILETICAL AND PRACTICAL
Jesus, in the silent conflicts of the wilderness, prepares for the open conflicts of lifetakes the place of John, delivered to death by the carnal mind1. The history: A testimony, a. that He honored the Baptist, b. that He did not fear the enemy, and c. that He was faithful to His people and His vocation2. The doctrine: a. The witnesses of the kingdom of God cannot be destroyed; b. after every seeming triumph of the kingdom of darkness, still stronger heroes of God come forward3. Christ is always Himself victorious at last in every scene.Persecution the primitive furtherance of the kingdom of God.The blood of the Church, the seed of the Church.Where the law falls in the letter, it is reestablished in the spirit.The preaching of Christ: 1. It appears as the announcement of salvation in the place of danger and ruin2. What it announces: that the time is fulfilled, and that the kingdom of God is come3. What it requires: repentance (as change of mind, μετάνοια) and faith4. What it signifies: the saving presence of Christ Himself.Christ and John as preachers: the might of their preaching itself1. John preaches in his whole life and manifestation; 2. Christ preaches out of the depth of His own divine life.The seal of evangelical preaching the full harmony of the person and the word.
On the whole section ( Mark 1:14-45).The first victorious appearance of Christ the prelude of His whole path of victory: 1. In the announcement of His Gospel; 2. in His dominion over the hearts of the chosen; 3. in His victory of the kingdom of Satan; 4. in His miraculous removal of human misery; 5. in His salutary shaking of the world.The glory of the Lord in its first actual exhibition: 1. A glory of grace ( Mark 1:16-20), 2. of sacred judicial and redeeming power ( Mark 1:21-28), 3. of healing mercy ( Mark 1:29-39), 4. of purifying purity ( Mark 1:40-44).Christ proceeds from the wilderness of the earth into the wilderness of human life for the restoration of paradise.Christ confirms His victory over Satan in the solitude of the desert by His victories over satanic powers among all the people.
Starke:Satan seeks to bind and to oppress Christ and His Gospel; but Gods wisdom and power set at naught all his aggression.
Gerlach:With the public appearance of Jesus, the end of Johns work had come.Gossner:He who understands repentance to mean that he must first become pious and good, and then come to Jesus, and believe His Gospel, goes out at the door of grace instead of entering in. Repenting and believing the Gospel, or believing in Christ, must go together and be one.
FN#6 - Mark 1:14.Codd. B, L, and several cursive MSS. and versions, leave out τῆς βασιλείας. So Lachmann and Tischendorf. Meyer thinks it an exegetical addition. But what follows might also have caused the omission.
CONQUEST OF THE FIRST DISCIPLES AT CAPERNAUM, VICTORY OVER THE DEMONS IN THAT CITY, AND WITHDRAWAL INTO THE WILDERNESS
1. The Authoritative word of Jesus, which calls the four first and greatest Disciples. Mark 1:16-20
(Parallels: Matthew 4:18-22; Luke 5:1-11; comp. John 1:35-42)
16Now, as he walked[FN7]by the sea of Galilee, he saw Simon, and Andrew his brother, casting a net into the sea: for they were fishers 17 And Jesus said unto them, Come ye after me, and I will make you to become fishers of men 18 And straightway they forsook their[FN8] nets, and followed him 19 And when he had gone a little farther thence,[FN9] he saw James the son of Zebedee, and John his brother, who also were in the ship mending their nets 20 And straightway he called them: and they left their father Zebedee in the ship with the hired servants, and went after him.
EXEGETICAL AND CRITICAL
See on Mat 4:18 seq.
Mark 1:16. As He walked by.The Evangelist would make prominent the apparently fortuitous character of this first vocation.
Mark 1:19. Who also were in the ship.Both pairs of brothers were called while in the earnest prosecution of their craft. The first two were throwing their nets into new positions in the water; the two others were mending them for new draughts.
Mark 1:20. With the hired servants.Why this addition? Paulus: It was to be made clear, how they could without impiety forsake their father. Meyer (after Grotius): It was only a proof that Zebedee did not follow his craft in a petty way, and that he probably was not without means. In any case, it also shows that Zebedee was not left helpless. That they forsook so thriving a business (Ewald), is indeed of less significance.
DOCTRINAL AND ETHICAL
1. Christ Himself is the great Fisher of men. He catches the four elect ones as it were at one draught. These are the three ( Mark 9:2) and the four ( Mark 13:3) confidential Apostles of after-times. Therefore there were first four fishermen called.
2. The power of Christs word over these souls here appears direct and immediate. We learn the mediating circumstances of this vocation from John 1. At the same time, this calling was something entirely new (see on Matthew 4:19), and their following so wonderful, that they at once forsook their calling, in the very act of pursuing it. The fishing life of these men was a preparation for their higher calling, as being fidelity in that which was least.
HOMILETICAL AND PRACTICAL
The Lord knoweth His own.The Lord and His elect quickly know each other.The great increase of grace swiftly enters into our daily life.Christs waiting by the sea apparently for relaxation, but at the same time the most noble work.Christs mark in this world the heart of man.The great Fisher of men, and His art of making human fishers.The calling of Jesus a call to become something new.The mighty calling of the Lord: 1. Gentler than any human request; 2. mightier than any human command; 3. unique as the victorious wooing of heavenly love.The calling of Jesus a calling at once to one thing and to many: 1. To one thing: into His discipleship and the fellowship of His Spirit, or to the Father; 2. to many: to discipleship and mastership, to coöperation, to fellowship in suffering, and community in triumph.The greatness of the following of the four disciples was the effect of the great grace of their calling. They broke off suddenly in the midst of a new career of their labor, as a sign of the decision of their following.The spiritual and the worldly vocation of Christians: 1. Opposition; 2. kindredness; 3. union.The twofold earthly companionship of the disciples a foundation for the higher: 1. Companions in fishing,companions in fishing for men; 2. brethren after the flesh,spiritual brethren.Leaving all for Christs sake.The Christian and ecclesiastical vocations in harmony with the sacred natural obligations of life.
Starke:Never be idle.Pious handicraft acceptable to God.The calling into Christianity binds us to faith and the following of Christ; how much more the vocation to spiritual office!A true follower of Christ forgets everything earthly.He who follows Christ loses nothing, though he may forsake all; for he finds in Him a full sufficiency, Matthew 19:29.
Lisco:The forsaking all must be experienced inwardly by every believer; and must be fulfilled outwardly also, in particular circumstances and occasions, Matthew 19:27.Schleiermacher:The two tendencies in the life of the Redeemer: preaching to the multitude, and the separation of individuals to Himself.Gossner:The Lords fishermen actually catch the fish; the worlds fishermen swim with the fish.Bauer:One glance of the Lord, and He knows the heart under its rough garment.
FN#7 - Mark 1:16.The expression παράγων is recommended by B, D, L, Lachmann, and Tischendorf. Instead of αὐτοῦ Lachmann and Tischendorf read Σιμῶνος.
FN#8 - Mark 1:18.Not their nets: αὐτῶν is wanting in B, C, L, Lachmann, Tischendorf.
FN#9 - Mark 1:19.Εκεῖθεν is wanting in B, D, L, Tischendorf; bracketed by Lachmann. It accords with Matthew 4:21.
2. The Word of Authority, which delivers the Demoniacs and attracts the People. Mark 1:21-28
(Parallel: Luke 4:31-37)
21And they went into Capernaum; and straightway on the Sabbath-day he enteredinto the synagogue, and taught 22 And they were astonished at his doctrine: for hetaught them as one that had authority, and not as the scribes 23 And there was in their 24 synagogue a man with an unclean spirit; and lie cried out, Saying, Let us alone;[FN10] what have we to do with thee, thou Jesus of Nazareth? art thou come to destroy us? Iknow thee who thou art, the Holy One of God 25 And Jesus rebuked him, saying, Holdthy peace, and come out of him 26 And when the unclean spirit had torn him, and criedwith a loud voice, he came out of him 27 And they were all amazed, insomuch that they questioned among themselves, saying, What thing is this? what new doctrine is this?[FN11] for with authority commandeth he even the unclean spirits, and they do obey him 28 And immediately his fame spread abroad[FN12] throughout all the region round about Galilee.
EXEGETICAL AND CRITICAL
The Evangelist, in harmony with his main point of view, proceeds at once to the act by which the Lord approved Himself the conqueror of the demons.
Mark 1:22. As one that had authority.See on Matthew 7:29.
Mark 1:23. With an unclean spirit, ἐν πνεύματι ἀκαθάρτῳHe was in the unclean spirit; that Isaiah, in his power, under his influence. Concerning the demoniac possession, see on Matthew 4:24.
Mark 1:24. Art thou come to destroy us?The demoniac consciousness still predominant on the part of the demon. Hence, to destroy us! Bengel: Communem inter se causam habent dmonia. The word involves also, 1. a testimony of the decided opposition between the demon empire and Christ; 2. a testimony of the perfect supremacy of Christ; 3. and a testimony of the beginning of the subversion of the satanic dominion.To destroy us.Meyer: By dismissing them to Hades. But even in Hades, Christ does not leave their empire to the demons. Thus it was by the destruction of their empire generally Certainly it was by dismissing them to the Gehenna of torment (according to which, the expression in Matt. ( Mark 8:29), the Hades of torment, is to be explained).I know Thee who Thou art.The demoniac consciousness in its involuntary presentiment. See Acts 16:16. It feels already the influence of Jesus, who would draw it from the side of the demon to His side. The word is ambiguous, so far as it belongs to the demon and to the man.The Holy One of God.In the emphatic sense, and thus, according to John 6:69, Revelation 3:7 (comp. John 10:36), the concealed designation of the Messiah. (So Origen: Meyer.) As the typical Old Testament anointed ones represented the Messiah, so the typical saints, priests, prophets, and kings ( Psalm 16) represented the Holy One και ἐξοχήν. The unclean spirit, however, describes Him by that opposite to himself which torments him, when he terms Him the Holy One of God.
Mark 1:25. Hold thy peace.This refers to the outcry of the demon. The Messiahship of Jesus was not to be prematurely spread abroad, least of all by demons. The kingdom of God and the invisible world scorns such precursors and coöperators. It bears testimony to itself by overcoming all these. Only after the decisive victory are such testimonies supplementarily, and in their own significance, admissible; then, when no intermingling is any longer possible.
Mark 1:26. Torn him.The decisive paroxysm with which the healing was declared; at the same time, a phenomenon exhibiting the knavish, spiteful, and degraded nature of the demons ( Mark 9:26; Luke 9:42).
Mark 1:27. Questioned among themselves.The spirits are awake. They do not first ask the priests and Rabbis, but proceed to independent suppositions and conclusions.New Doctrine.From the appearance of a new power of delivering, they infer the appearance of a new revelation; for revelation and deliverance, miracle and prophecy, always to the Israelites were reciprocal in their influence. For various constructions and interpretations of this passage, see Meyer in loc.
Mark 1:28. Throughout all, the region round about Galilee.That Isaiah, through all Galilee, and beyond into the neighboring districts everywhere.
DOCTRINAL AND ETHICAL
1. The first miracle recorded by Matthew is the healing of the leper by a touch; for one main point of view with him was the opposition of Christ to the hierarchical theocracy and their ordinances. The first miracle which John records is the changing of water into wine; for his main point of view is the glorification of the old and darkened world into a world of spirit. The first miracle which Luke and Mark relate is this casting out of demons in the synagogue at Capernaum. But the points of view of the two latter in this matter are as different and characteristic as their respective Gospels. Luke, in harmony with his predominant object (the divine humanity of Christ), has in view preëminently the healed man. The demon threw him down, and departed from him, without hurting him at all. To Mark, on the other hand, the supremacy of Christ over the kingdom of the demons is the grand object, even as it declares and approves His doctrine to be a new one. Hence he makes it emphatic, that Christ commanded even the unclean spirits, and that they obeyed Him. This point of view runs through his whole Gospel, down to its concluding words.
2. To Mark belong the chief records of Christs victory over the devils, while in the other Evangelists there is only a general reference to them. In John we do not find deliverances of this sort; on the other hand, he gives prominence to moral possession ( John 6:70; John 8:44; John 13:27),an idea which is found approximately among the other Evangelists as sevenfold possession. Further, here we must mark the relation of Christ and His kingdom to Satan and his kingdom, according to the New Testament teaching. Dogmatics must, more rigorously than heretofore, distinguish between the devil and this kind of demons, as well as between the children of the devil and these bound ones of Satan.
3. The synagogue cannot hinder a demoniac from entering it, nor that Satan should in it declare the victory of the kingdom of order and light. Christ cleanses the synagogue.
HOMILETICAL AND PRACTICAL
Christ the Saviour of the synagogue and of the Church.The adherence of Christ to the sanctuary of His people, legal and yet free.By the perfect sanctification of the Sabbath and the synagogue, our Lord established the Sunday and the Church.How the Child of the synagogue became the Prince of the Church.Sabbath and synagogue; or, the holy time and the holy place in their symbolical meaning: 1. They signify rest from the toil of sin, and the temple; 2. the Christian Sunday and the Church; 3. the heavenly feast and the heavenly Church.The demoniac in the synagogue; or, the daring incursion of Satan into the legitimate Church of God to be restrained only by the word of Christ.How Christ always victoriously confronts the satanic power which insinuates itself into the Church.Heavenly and hellish powers meet in the Church.The healing of the possessed in the synagogue a decisive token of the redeeming empire of Christ: 1. Of His victory over the kingdom of Satan; 2. of His saving mercy to the wretched; 3. of His miraculous sealing of the Gospel; 4. of His awakening conquest of the world.The consciousness of Christ a healing power for the consciousness disturbed by Satan.The spiritually disturbed consciousness a figure of the curse of sin: 1. In its destruction and contradictions; 2. in its restraint; 3. in its despair; 4. but also in its dim feeling of its misery and of the coming of its Saviour.The characteristics of the wicked: 1. Knowledge without love; 2. hatred to the Lord, and withal flattering acknowledgment; 3. pride even to madness, and yet impotent fear and flight. Or, 1. Darkness in its lie; 2. murder in its hatred; 3. death in its rending.Christ immovably opposed to the flattery and hypocrisy, as well as to the threatening and pride, of Satan.The antithesis of heaven and hell in the conflict of Christ with the demon: 1. Peace of soul and passion (the devil assaults first); 2. collectedness and distraction; 3. the spirit of mercy and the spirit of torment; 4. dignity and degradation; 5. victory and prostration.Christ scorns the testimony of the demons, and obtains the praise of the people.The glory of Christ, that He came into the world to destroy the works of the devil, 1 John 3:8.
Starke:The public service of God not to be neglected, Hebrews 10:25.Unclean spirits are found even in the Church, James 2:19.Christ will have no testimony from the spirit of lies.Osiander:If the devil must give way, yet he rages fearfully: he must, however, give place to the Holy Spirit.Gossner:The devil knew Him as the Holy One of God, but not as the Saviour.Braune:The possessed trembles before Him who is his Deliverer.
FN#10 - Mark 1:24.Εα is wanting, it is true, in B, D, and others; but it is as accordant with Mark as with Luke ( Mark 4:34).
FN#11 - Mark 1:27.Lachmann, following B, L, Δ., &c.: τί ἐστι τοῦτο; διδαχή καινή. κατ, &c. Tischendorf connects διδαχη καινὴ κατ ἐζουσίαν. Lachmanns is better. [Meyer accounts for the Received Text, by a comparison with Luke 4:36.Ed.]
FN#12 - Mark 1:28Καὶ ἐξῆλθεν: And the fame, &c.
3. Healing among the Disciples; Healings and casting out of Demons in Capernaum; the first Return of Christ after He had thus dealt with the susceptible in that city. Mark 1:29-35
(Parallels: Matthew 8:14-17; Luke 4:38-41)
29And forthwith, when they were come out of the synagogue, they entered into thehouse of Simon and Andrew, with James and John 30But Simons wifes mother laysick of a fever; and anon they tell him of her 31 And he came and took her by the hand, and lifted her up; and immediately the fever left her, and she ministered untothem 32 And at even, when the sun did set, they brought unto him all that were dis-eased, and them that were possessed with devils 33 And all the city was gathered together at the door 34 And he healed many that were sick of divers diseases, and castout many devils; and suffered not the devils to speak, because they knew him.[FN13] 35And in the morning, rising up a great while before day, he went out, and departed into a solitary place, and there prayed.
EXEGETICAL AND CRITICAL
See on Mat 8:14-17
Mark 1:29. They entered into.Jesus, Peter, and Andrew are meant; the two latter as the ordinary occupants of the house, which Peter or both possessed in Capernaum (see on Matthew). In addition came James and John. Thus the Lord was with the collective four disciples who had been called.
Mark 1:30. And anon they tell him of her.Here also we have εὐθέως thrice in rapid succession. Immediately into the house, immediately to the matter in hand, immediately healed. Matthew transfers this miracle to a later period (see on Matthew). Starke for the sake of harmony: It may have been that the mother-in-law of Peter twice had the fever, and that Christ healed her twice. (!)
Mark 1:32. At even, when the sun did set.The full close of the Sabbath. Judos religio tenebat, quominus ante exitum. Sabbati grotos suos afferrent. Wetstein.
Mark 1:34. Sick of divers diseases, and cast out many devils.The physically sick and the demoniacs clearly distinguished ( Mark 1:34; Matthew 8:16); just as they are in relation to the opposite charisms which were given with respect to them, 1 Corinthians 12:9-10.And He healed many.Not as opposed to all who were brought to Him, but to describe the abundance and variety of the healings which took place so late in the evening.
Mark 1:35. Into a solitary place.To a secret place in the wilderness. It is to be noted that Jesus, according to Mark, thrice in quick succession, withdrew into the wilderness, Mark 1:12; Mark 1:35; Mark 1:45. Here we can understand only a solitude near Capernaum. That He thus took up His abode time after time in the wilderness, declared his supremacy over the demons of the wilderness. He made the desert place a temple of God by His prayers.
DOCTRINAL AND ETHICAL
1. The succession of events marks the development of Christs work: 1. The synagogue at home2. The house of Peter, as the hearth of the new community of disciples at its outset3. The whole town of Capernaum4. The entire land of Galilee.The progression of the influence of our Lords preaching: 1. His fame goes out through all Galilee2. The whole town of Capernaum presses for help at His door, yea, into His doors3. All seek Him after He had withdrawn4. Even in the wilderness they come to Him from all parts.
2. In order that they may punctiliously guard their own rest on the Sabbath, the people of Capernaum wait till evening with their sufferers, and rob the Lord of His rest in the night.
HOMILETICAL AND PRACTICAL
Jesus the Saviour of the new as of the old community (Peters house, the synagogue).And they told Him of her: with faith waxes intercession.Peter, as householder, a type of the ecclesiastic at home: 1. He is not hindered from his calling by domestic trouble (he also went into the synagogue); but, 2. he took his domestic trouble with him into his calling (he prayed the Lord for the sick).The people at Capernaum seeking help; or, Christ the true Physician: 1. As the revealer of human misery; 2. as the marvellous deliverer from it.An evening and a morning in the life of Jesus; or, His holy days work: 1. Closed in the blessing of toil; 2. renewed in devotion.The rapid diffusion of Christs work and influence: 1. Through the believing house; 2. through the susceptible town; 3. through the amazed land.New seclusion for new conflicts.Private prayer the source of Christs victories.The Lords early hours.His morning devotion.The significance of morning in the kingdom of God: 1. A festal time in the life of Jesus; 2. an image of His whole life; 3. a blessed time in the life of Christians; 4. figure of their regeneration and their eternity.How Christ sanctifies all times and all places.
Starke:Quesnel:The dwelling of a poor fisherman pleases Christ more than a great palace.Osiander:God is oftener in little huts than in rich palaces.Christianity and household life agree well together.Marriage unfits no man for the ministry.Compassionate love suffers not the wretched long to wait, but thinks at once of help.Quesnel:The love of Jesus is never weary.There are always wretched ones in this vale of tears, who stand in need of the help of the Most High.Christ the most approved Physician.It does not become the man spiritually possessed of the devil to reveal Christ.Early hours must be thought much of.For prayer even sleep must be abridged.
Gerlach:The gracious love of Christ amidst the household necessities of the poor and neglected.Lisco:Jesus connects together prayer and work, solitude and public life, in order to do good.Euth. Zig.:We must shun the praise of men, and thank God in silent secrecy.
FN#13 - Mark 1:34.Some Codd. add, that He was Christ.
1. The Preaching and Healing of Jesus. Mark 1:36-39
(Parallel: Luke 4:44)
36And Simon, and they that were with him, followed after him 37 And when they ha found him, they said unto him, All men seek for thee 38 And he said unto them, Let usgo[FN14] into the next towns, that I may preach there also: for therefore came I forth 39 And he preached in their[FN15] synagogues throughout all Galilee, and cast out devils.
EXEGETICAL AND CRITICAL
Mark 1:36. And Simon, and they that were with him.Simon placed first, not on account of any superiority, but as the head of the house and the guide.
Mark 1:38. Into the next towns.The κωμοπόλεις only here in the New Testament. The primary object is to record the travelling through the Galilean hill-country, and its villages and towns.For therefore came I forth.The question Isaiah, whether the meaning be, I am come from the Father to preach generally (Bengel); or, I have left the house (or Capernaum) in order to preach in the neighboring villages (Meyer). We think that Christ lays stress upon preaching as His great vocation, in opposition to the pressure of individual applicants for help in Capernaum. The former of the two interpretations seems to be the better.
Mark 1:39. In their synagogues (into).The Accusative, twice occurring, makes it emphatic that he filled the synagogues and all Judea with a might of preaching that formed a contrast to the synagogue style.
DOCTRINAL AND ETHICAL
1. Jesus prepared himself in the desert for His second great expedition. The spiritual awakening and conquest of the land of Galilee was now in question.
2. Here also Mark (like Luke) gives special emphasis to the casting out of devils, and to the command of silence, by which Jesus hindered the devils from uttering His name.
3. It is observed also that Jesus places preaching expressly above miraculous healings; this is seen in the use of the participle, δαιμόνια ἐκβάλλων. But the preaching has its root in the secret devotion: His public work sprang from His solitary prayer.
HOMILETICAL AND PRACTICAL
How the Lord equipped himself anew for new labors.Christ goes with His first four disciples into the land of Galilee: the small beginning of the universamission.How the Lords preaching approves itself as the power of divine life: 1. As the spiritual word of His working; 2. as delivering power for the suffering; 3. as judicial power of victory over the demons.Christ confronting the increasing pressure of the people: 1. How He restrains it (withdrawal into the wilderness); 2. how He regulates it (preaching on the individual miracles); 3. how He surrenders Himself to it (responding to every demand of help).Christ does not shut up His activity within the walls of Capernaum, nor within the limits of any one people or any one confession.The way of Christ among the surrounding villages: 1. Already to as many as possible; 2. one day to all.
Starke:We must have village preachers.The Gospel of Jesus must sound out in all places.Where Christs kingdom is to be established, the devils must be abolished. So also in thee.Schleiermacher:The preaching of the kingdom of God was Christs vocation: 1. Concerning Himself, as He who was come to save men; 2. concerning the true righteousness which avails before God; 3. concerning the worship of God in spirit and truth.Within these limits it was His vocation to spread that kingdom as far as He could.Gossner:To this end am I come (He says) to save men.Christ did not scorn the little towns and villages.
2. The Touching of the Leper, and the Return into the Wilderness. Mark 1:40-45
(Parallels: Matthew 8:1-4; Luke 5:12-16)
40And there came a leper to him, beseeching him, and kneeling down to him,[FN16] and 41 saying unto him, If thou wilt, thou canst make me clean. And Jesus,[FN17] moved with compassion, put forth his hand, and touched him, and saith unto him, I will; be thou clean 42 And as soon as he had spoken, immediately the leprosy departed from him, and he was43, 44cleansed. And he straitly charged him, and forthwith sent him away; And saith unto him, See thou say nothing to any man: but go thy way, show thyself to the priest, and offer for thy cleansing those things which Moses commanded, for a testimonyunto them 45 But he went out, and began to publish it much, and to blaze abroad the matter, insomuch that Jesus could no more openly enter into the city, but was without in desert places: and they came to him from every quarter.
EXEGETICAL AND CRITICAL
Respecting this narrative, and the leper, see on Matthew 8:1-13. The occurrence follows the Sermon on the Mount; and this is here intimated by the return of Jesus to Capernaum, Mark 2:1.
Mark 1:43. And He straitly charged him.The ἐμβριμησάμενος is the opposite of the preceding σπλαγχνισθείς. Probably the leper had overstepped the limits of his discipline (lepers were not suffered to intrude into others houses) and of the law, and had penetrated to the house where Jesus might have been tarrying in one of the towns. This Meyer reasonably infers from the ἐξέβαλενHe forthwith sent him away. First of all, Jesus regarded the misery of the case, and, seized with compassion, healed the sick man. But then He proceeded to guard the legal obligation under which the sick man stood, and household rights and general order. Mark gives us a vivid view of the sending away of the healed Prayer of Manasseh, and exhibits the scene in his own lively expressions.
Mark 1:44. To the priest.The Vulgate, romanizing, explains: Principi sacerdotum. But it only means the priest in general, whose function concerned the man.For a testimony unto them.The actual cleansing must be confirmed in a Levitically legal manner.
Mark 1:45. To blaze abroad the matter, τὸν λόγονFritzsche: The word of Jesus. De Wette: The matter. Meyer: The narrative of what had passed. There is implied, perhaps, a distinction between his narrative and the embellished report of the event which was spread abroad, and to which it gave occasion.Could no more openly enter.The reason of this withdrawal was not merely to obviate the increase of the crowd, but the fact that Jesus had touched the leper, which, according to the law, made a man unclean for a season. See Leben Jesu, ii2, 639. Moreover, this solitude imported a new withdrawal for a new advance.
DOCTRINAL AND ETHICAL
See Com. on Matthew, in loc.
1. Wherefore does Mark close the delineation of Christs first manifestation in public with the healing of the leper? This narrative Isaiah, first, a witness that Christ entered into the fellowship of sinners in order to suffer for them; and so far was a prelude of the end. Secondly, it marked His relation to traditionalism, the offence and assaults of which now follow.
2. The present withdrawal of Jesus took place under the presentiment of His conflicts with traditionalism, and as a preparation to meet them.
HOMILETICAL AND PRACTICAL
The healing of the leper a testimony of the mightily cleansing purity of Christ.Christ even in the influence of His purity the Lion of Judah.Redemption, like creation, an omnipotent Let there be! (He speaks, and it is done: I will, be thou clean.)The need of deliverance breaking through the law. The leper presses into the house, like the paralytic through the roof, and the sinner into the Pharisees house.The leper a pattern of those who seek help, but not of those who give thanks: 1. His perfect trust and humble submission (If Thou wilt, etc.); 2. regardlessness of his friends, lack of docility towards the ceremonial law and of discipline.Christs interchange with the leper a symbol of His interchange with the sinner: He makes the leper clean, and contracts Levitical defilement. So Christ was made sin for us, that we might be made righteousness in Him.The compassion of our Lord the source of our salvation.The miraculous hand of Christ the instrument of all heavenly healing: 1. As delivering, 2. as distributing, 3. as consummating.The disobedience of the leper; or, lack of ceremonial discipline in the reception of healing: 1. Excusable as far as it was the interchange of illegality and freedom; 2. blamable, because he constrained the Lord (even in His Church) to atone for transitory illegality by the legalities of prudence.Christ in the wilderness and everywhere the centre of a wretched and needy world.Christ, through His divine compassion, involved with human traditions.A new collectedness of the spirit, a new blessing and victory.
Starke:The spiritual leper.Quesnel:Prayer, humility, and faith as the source (the organs for the reception) of all righteousness.We are directed to keep all right ordinances, etc. Abide by the public service of God.Deliverance from misery demands its right and peculiar offerings of praise.The more a servant of God withdraws himself from the world, the more highly does the world esteem him.
Gerlach:The healed leper was like those who, out of thankfulness of heart indeed, but yet inconsiderately, neglect the inward commandment of the Holy Spirit, and make too much talk about the grace of God, to their own and others hurt.Schleiermacher:The Redeemer by His touch took away the ban which sundered the leper from all human intercourse.Likeness between leprosy and sin.The one leper and the ten.Bauer:How Jesus respected the ordinances of His people.
FN#14 - Mark 1:38.The Rec. omits ἀλλαχοῦ after ἄγωμεν: it is supported by B, C, L, Copt, Tischendorf.
FN#15 - Mark 1:39.Into their: εἰς τας in A, B, D, Griesbach, Lachmann, Tischendorf. The Textus Receptus reads ἐν ταῖς συναγωγαῖς,an emendation, says Meyer.
FN#16 - Mark 1:40.The omission of καὶ γονυπετῶν αὐτόν in B, D, and Lachmann and Tischendorf, is not sufficiently supported.
FN#17 - Mark 1:41.Ο δὲ Ιησοῦς omitted in B, D, &c. So Lachmann, Tischendorf. Meyer explains this omission, as also the dropping out of εἰπόντος αὐτοῦ, Mark 1:42, from an intention to conform the text with Matthew and Luke. So also with the μηδέν Mark 1:44.
Sunday, March 26th, 2017
the Fourth Sunday of Lent
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