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  • JAMIESON-FAUSSET-BROWN - MARK 16
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    CHAPTER 16

    Mr 16:1-20. ANGELIC ANNOUNCEMENT TO THE WOMEN ON THE FIRST DAY OF THE WEEK, THAT CHRIST IS RISEN--HIS APPEARANCES AFTER HIS RESURRECTION--HIS ASCENSION--TRIUMPHANT PROCLAMATION OF HIS GOSPEL. ( = Mt 28:1-10, 16-20; Lu 24:1-51; Joh 20:1, 2, 11-29).

    The Resurrection Announced to the Women (Mr 16:1-8).

    1. And when the sabbath was past--that is, at sunset of our Saturday.
    - Mary Magdalene--(See on Lu 8:2).
    - and Mary the mother of James--James the Less (see Mr 15:40).
    - and Salome--the mother of Zebedee's sons (compare Mr 15:40 with Mt 27:56).
    - had bought sweet spices, that they might come and anoint him--The word is simply "bought." But our translators are perhaps right in rendering it here "had bought," since it would appear, from Lu 23:56, that they had purchased them immediately after the Crucifixion, on the Friday evening, during the short interval that remained to them before sunset, when the sabbath rest began; and that they had only deferred using them to anoint the body till the sabbath rest should be over. On this "anointing," see on Joh 19:40.

    2. And very early in the morning--(See on Mt 28:1).
    - the first day of the week, they came unto the sepulchre at the rising of the sun--not quite literally, but "at earliest dawn"; according to a way of speaking not uncommon, and occurring sometimes in the Old Testament. Thus our Lord rose on the third day; having lain in the grave part of Friday, the whole of Saturday, and part of the following First day.

    3. And they said among themselves--as they were approaching the sacred spot.
    - Who shall roll us away the stone from the door of the sepulchre? . . . for it was very great--On reaching it they find their difficulty gone--the stone already rolled away by an unseen hand. And are there no others who, when advancing to duty in the face of appalling difficulties, find their stone also rolled away?

    5. And entering into the sepulchre, they saw a young man--In Mt 28:2 he is called "the angel of the Lord"; but here he is described as he appeared to the eye, in the bloom of a life that knows no decay. In Matthew he is represented as sitting on the stone outside the sepulchre; but since even there he says, "Come, see the place where the Lord lay" (Mt 28:6), he seems, as ALFORD says, to have gone in with them from without; only awaiting their arrival to accompany them into the hallowed spot, and instruct them about it.
    - sitting on the right side--having respect to the position in which His Lord had lain there. This trait is peculiar to Mark; but compare Lu 1:11.
    - clothed in a long white garment--On its length, see Isa 6:1; and on its whiteness, see on Mt 28:3.
    - and they were affrighted.

    6. And he saith unto them, Be not affrighted--a stronger word than "Fear not" in Matthew (Mt 28:5).
    - Ye seek Jesus of Nazareth, which was crucified!--"the Nazarene, the Crucified."
    - he is risen; he is not here--(See on Lu 24:5, 6).
    - behold the place where they laid him--(See on Mt 28:6).

    7. But go your way, tell his disciples and Peter--This Second Gospel, being drawn up--as all the earliest tradition states--under the eye of Peter, or from materials chiefly furnished by him, there is something deeply affecting in the preservation of this little clause by Mark alone.
    - that he goeth before you into Galilee; there shall ye see him, as he said unto you--(See on Mt 28:7).

    8. And they went out quickly, and fled from the sepulchre: for they trembled and were amazed--"for tremor and amazement seized them."
    - neither said they anything to any man; for they were afraid--How intensely natural and simple is this!

    Appearances of Jesus after His Resurrection (Mr 16:9-18).

    9. Now when Jesus was risen early the first day of the week, he appeared first to Mary Magdalene, out of whom he had cast seven devils--There is some difficulty here, and different ways of removing it have been adopted. She had gone with the other women to the sepulchre (Mr 16:1), parting from them, perhaps, before their interview with the angel, and on finding Peter and John she had come with them back to the spot; and it was at this second visit, it would seem, that Jesus appeared to this Mary, as detailed in Joh 20:11-18. To a woman was this honor given to be the first that saw the risen Redeemer, and that woman was NOT his virgin-mother.

    11. And they, when they had heard that he was alive, and had been seen of her, believed not--This, which is once and again repeated of them all, is most important in its bearing on their subsequent testimony to His resurrection at the risk of life itself.

    12. After that he appeared in another form--(compare Lu 24:16).
    - unto two of them as they walked, and went into the country--The reference here, of course, is to His manifestation to the two disciples going to Emmaus, so exquisitely told by the Third Evangelist (see on Lu 24:13, &c.).

    13. And they went and told it unto the residue: neither believed they them, &c.

    15. And he said unto them, Go ye into all the world, and preach the Gospel to every creature--See on Joh 20:19-23 and Lu 24:36-49.

    16. He that believeth and is baptized--Baptism is here put for the external signature of the inner faith of the heart, just as "confessing with the mouth" is in Ro 10:10; and there also as here this outward manifestation, once mentioned as the proper fruit of faith, is not repeated in what follows (Ro 10:11).
    - shall be saved; but he that believeth not shall be damned--These awful issues of the reception or rejection of the Gospel, though often recorded in other connections, are given in this connection only by Mark.

    17, 18. And these signs shall follow them that believe . . . They shall take up serpents--These two verses also are peculiar to Mark.

    The Ascension and Triumphant Proclamation of the Gospel Thereafter (Mr 16:19, 20).

    19. So then after the Lord--an epithet applied to Jesus by this Evangelist only in Mr 16:19, 20, when He comes to His glorious Ascension and its subsequent fruits. It is most frequent in Luke.
    - had spoken unto them, he was received up into heaven--See on Lu 24:50, 51.
    - and sat on the right hand of God--This great truth is here only related as a fact in the Gospel history. In that exalted attitude He appeared to Stephen (Ac 7:55, 56); and it is thereafter perpetually referred to as His proper condition in glory.

    20. And they went forth, and preached everywhere, the Lord working with them, and confirming the word with signs following. Amen--We have in this closing verse a most important link of connection with the Acts of the Apostles, where He who directed all the movements of the infant Church is perpetually styled "THE LORD"; thus illustrating His own promise for the rounding and building up of the Church, "LO, I AM WITH YOU alway!"

    Robert Jamieson, A. R. Fausset and David Brown
    Commentary Critical and Explanatory on the Whole Bible (1871)
    Introduction">

    INTRODUCTION

    THE writer of this Gospel is universally allowed to have been Lucas (an abbreviated form of Lucanus, as Silas of Silvanus), though he is not expressly named either in the Gospel or in the Acts. From Col 4:14 we learn that he was a "physician"; and by comparing that verse with Col 4:10, 11 --in which the apostle enumerates all those of the circumcision who were then with him, but does not mention Luke, though he immediately afterwards sends a salutation from him--we gather that Luke was not a born Jew. Some have thought he was a freed-man (libertinus), as the Romans devolved the healing art on persons of this class and on their slaves, as an occupation beneath themselves. His intimate acquaintance with Jewish customs, and his facility in Hebraic Greek, seem to show that he was an early convert to the Jewish faith; and this is curiously confirmed by Ac 21:27-29, where we find the Jews enraged at Paul's supposed introduction of Greeks into the temple, because they had seen "Trophimus the Ephesian" with him; and as we know that Luke was with Paul on that occasion, it would seem that they had taken him for a Jew, as they made no mention of him. On the other hand, his fluency in classical Greek confirms his Gentile origin. The time when he joined Paul's company is clearly indicated in the Acts by his changing (at Ac 16:10) from the third person singular ("he") to the first person plural ("we"). From that time he hardly ever left the apostle till near the period of his martyrdom (2Ti 4:11). EUSEBIUS makes him a native of Antioch. If so, he would have every advantage for cultivating the literature of Greece and such medical knowledge as was then possessed. That he died a natural death is generally agreed among the ancients; GREGORY NAZIANZEN alone affirming that he died a martyr.

    The time and place of the publication of his Gospel are alike uncertain. But we can approximate to it. It must at any rate have been issued before the Acts, for there the 'Gospel' is expressly referred to as the same author's "former treatise" (Ac 1:1). Now the Book of the Acts was not published for two whole years after Paul's arrival as a prisoner at Rome, for it concludes with a reference to this period; but probably it was published soon after that, which would appear to have been early in the year 63. Before that time, then, we have reason to believe that the Gospel of Luke was in circulation, though the majority of critics make it later. If we date it somewhere between A.D. 50 and 60, we shall probably be near the truth; but nearer it we cannot with any certainty come. Conjectures as to the place of publication are too uncertain to be mentioned here.

    That it was addressed, in the first instance, to Gentile readers, is beyond doubt. This is no more, as DAVIDSON remarks [Introduction to the New Testament, p. 186], than was to have been expected from the companion of an "apostle of the Gentiles," who had witnessed marvellous changes in the condition of many heathens by the reception of the Gospel. But the explanations in his Gospel of things known to every Jew, and which could only be intended for Gentile readers, make this quite plain--see Lu 1:26; 4:31; 8:26; 21:37; 22:1; 24:13. A number of other minute particulars, both of things inserted and of things omitted, confirm the conclusion that it was Gentiles whom this Evangelist had in the first instance in view.

    We have already adverted to the classical style of Greek which this Evangelist writes--just what might have been expected from an educated Greek and travelled physician. But we have also observed that along with this he shows a wonderful flexibility of style, so much so, that when he comes to relate transactions wholly Jewish, where the speakers and actors and incidents are all Jewish, he writes in such Jewish Greek as one would do who had never been out of Palestine or mixed with any but Jews. In DA COSTA'S'S Four Witnesses will be found some traces of "the beloved physician" in this Gospel. But far more striking and important are the traces in it of his intimate connection with the apostle of the Gentiles. That one who was so long and so constantly in the society of that master mind has in such a work as this shown no traces of that connection, no stamp of that mind, is hardly to be believed. Writers of Introductions seem not to see it, and take no notice of it. But those who look into the interior of it will soon discover evidences enough in it of a Pauline cast of mind. Referring for a number of details to DA COSTA, we notice here only two examples: In 1Co 11:23, Paul ascribes to an express revelation from Christ Himself the account of the Institution of the Lord's Supper which he there gives. Now, if we find this account differing in small yet striking particulars from the accounts given by Matthew and Mark, but agreeing to the letter with Luke's account, it can hardly admit of a doubt that the one had it from the other; and in that case, of course, it was Luke that had it from Paul. Now Matthew and Mark both say of the Cup, "This is my blood of the New Testament"; while Paul and Luke say, in identical terms, "This cup is the New Testament in My blood" (1Co 11:25; Lu 22:20). Further, Luke says, "Likewise also the cup after supper, saying," &c.; while Paul says, "After the same manner He took the cup when He had supped, saying," &c.; whereas neither Matthew nor Mark mention that this was after supper. But still more striking is another point of coincidence in this case. Matthew and Mark both say of the Bread merely this: "Take, eat; this is My body" (Mt 26:26; Mr 14:22); whereas Paul says, "Take, eat, this is My body, which is broken for you" (1Co 11:24), and Luke, "This is My body, which is given for you" (Lu 22:19). And while Paul adds the precious clause, "This do in remembrance of Me," Luke does the same, in identical terms. How can one who reflects on this resist the conviction of a Pauline stamp in this Gospel? The other proof of this to which we ask the reader's attention is in the fact that Paul, in enumerating the parties by whom Christ was seen after His resurrection, begins, singularly enoug

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