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  • ROBERTSON'S NT WORD STUDIES
    & BIBLE COMMENTARY - MARK 13

    Mark 12 - Mark 14 - VINCENT'S STUDY - HELP - FACEBOOK - GR FORUMS - GODRULES ON YOUTUBE    




    13:1 {Master, behold, what manner of stones and what manner of buildings} (didaskale, ide potapoi liqoi kai potapai oikodomai). #Mt 24:1 and #Lu 21:5 tell of the fact of the comment, but Mark alone gives the precise words. Perhaps Peter himself (Swete) was the one who sought thus by a pleasant platitude to divert the Teacher's attention from the serious topics of recent hours in the temple. It was not a new observation, but the merest commonplace might serve at this crisis. Josephus (_Ant_. xv. II, 3) speaks of the great size of these stones and the beauty of the buildings. Some of these stones at the southeastern and southwestern angles survive today and measure from twenty to forty feet long and weigh a hundred tons. Jesus had, of course, often observed them.

    13:2 {These great buildings} (tautas tas oikodomas). Jesus fully recognizes their greatness and beauty. The more remarkable will be their complete demolition (kataluqei), {loosened down}. Only the foundation stones remain.

    13:3 {Over against the temple} (katenanti tou hierou). In full view of the temple about which they had been speaking. {Privately} (kat' idian). Peter and James and John and Andrew (named only in Mark) had evidently been discussing the strange comment of Jesus as they were coming out of the temple. In their bewilderment they ask Jesus a bit to one side, though probably all the rest drew up as Jesus began to speak this great eschatological discourse.

    13:4 {Tell us, when shall these things be?} (eipon hemin pote tauta estai;). The Revised Version punctuates it as a direct question, but Westcott and Hort as an indirect inquiry. They asked about the {when} (pote) and the {what sign} (ti semeion). #Mt 24:3 includes "the sign of thy coming and the end of the world," showing that these tragic events are brought before Jesus by the disciples. See discussion of the interpretation of this discourse on ¯Mt 24:3. this chapter in Mark is often called "The Little Apocalypse" with the notion that a Jewish apocalypse has been here adapted by Mark and attributed to Jesus. Many of the theories attribute grave error to Jesus or to the Gospels on this subject. The view adopted in the discussion in Matthew is the one suggested here, that Jesus blended in one picture his death, the destruction of Jerusalem within that generation, the second coming and end of the world typified by the destruction of the city. The lines between these topics are not sharply drawn in the report and it is not possible for us to separate the topics clearly. this great discourse is the longest preserved in Mark and may be due to Peter. Mark may have given it in order "to forewarn and forearm" (Bruce) the readers against the coming catastrophe of the destruction of Jerusalem. Both Matthew (#Mt 24) and Luke (#Lu 21:5-36) follow the general line of Mark 13 though #Mt 24:43-25:46 presents new material (parables).

    13:5 {Take need that no man lead you astray} (blepete me tis h-mas planesei). Same words in #Mt 24:4. #Lu 21:8 has it "that ye be not led astray" (me planeqete). this word planaw (our _planet_) is a bold one. this warning runs through the whole discussion. It is pertinent today after so many centuries. About the false Christs qen and now see on ¯Mt 24:5. It is amazing the success that these charlatans have through the ages in winning the empty-pated to their hare-brained views. Only this morning as I am writing a prominent English psychologist has challenged the world to a radio communication with Mars asserting that he has made frequent trips to Mars and communicated with its alleged inhabitants. And the daily papers put his ebullitions on the front page. For discussion of the details in verses #6-8 see on ¯Mt 24:5-8. All through the ages in spite of the words of Jesus men have sought to apply the picture here drawn to the particular calamity in their time.

    13:7 {Must needs come to pass} (dei genesqai). Already there were outbreaks against the Jews in Alexandria, at Seleucia with the slaughter of more than fifty thousand, at Jamnia, and elsewhere. Caligula, Claudius, Nero will threaten war before it finally comes with the destruction of the city and temple by Titus in A.D. 70. Vincent notes that between this prophecy by Jesus in A.D. 30 (or 29) and the destruction of Jerusalem there was an earthquake in Crete (A.D. 46 or 47), at Rome (A.D. 51), at Apamaia in Phrygia (A.D. 60), at Campania (A.D. 63). He notes also four famines during the reign of Claudius A.D. 41-54. One of them was in Judea in A.D. 44 and is alluded to in #Ac 11:28. Tacitus (_Annals_ xvi. 10-13) describes the hurricanes and storms in Campania in A.D. 65.

    13:9 {But take heed to yourselves} (blepete de humeis heautous). Only in Mark, but dominant note of warning all through the discourse. Note humeis here, very emphatic. {Councils} (sunedria). Same word as the Sanhedrin in Jerusalem. These local councils (sun, hedra, sitting together) were modelled after that in Jerusalem. {Shall ye be beaten} (daresesqe). Second future passive indicative second person plural. The word derw means to flay or skin and here has been softened into {beat} like our tan or skin in the vernacular. Aristophanes has it in this colloquial sense as have the papyri in the _Koin‚_. Before governors and kings (epi hegemonwn kai basilewn). Gentile rulers as well as before Jewish councils. {Shall stand} (staqesesqe). First aorist passive indicative second person plural of histemi.

    13:10 {Must first be preached} (prwton dei kerucqenai). this only in Mark. It is interesting to note that Paul in #Col 1:6,23 claims that the gospel has spread all over the world. All this was before the destruction of Jerusalem.

    13:11 {Be not anxious beforehand what ye shall speak} (me promerimnate ti lalesete). Negative with present imperative to make a general prohibition or habit. Jesus is not here referring to preaching, but to defences made before these councils and governors. A typical example is seen in the courage and skill of Peter and John before the Sanhedrin in Acts. The verb merimnaw is from merizw (meris), to be drawn in opposite directions, to be distracted. See on ¯Mt 6:25. They are not to be stricken with fright beforehand, but to face fearlessly those in high places who are seeking to overthrow the preaching of the gospel. There is no excuse here for the lazy preacher who fails to prepare his sermon out of the mistaken reliance upon the Holy Spirit. They will need and will receive the special help of the Holy Spirit (cf. #Joh 14-16).

    13:13 {But he that endureth to the end} (ho de hupomeinas eis telos). Note this aorist participle with the future verb. The idea here is true to the etymology of the word, remaining under (hupomenw) until the end. The divisions in families Jesus had predicted before (#Lu 12:52f.; 14:25f.). {Be saved} (swqesetai). Here Jesus means final salvation (effective aorist future passive), not initial salvation.

    13:14 {Standing where he ought not} (hestekota hopou ou dei). #Mt 24:15 has "standing in the holy place" (hestos en topoi hagiwi), neuter and agreeing with bdelugma (abomination), the very phrase applied in 1Macc. 1:54 to the altar to Zeus erected by Antiochus Epiphanes where the altar to Jehovah was. Mark personifies the abomination as personal (masculine), while #Lu 21:20 defines it by reference to the armies (of Rome, as it turned out). So the words of Daniel find a second fulfilment, Rome taking the place of Syria (Swete). See on ¯Mt 24:15 for this phrase and the parenthesis inserted in the words of Jesus ("Let him that readeth understand"). See also on ¯Mt 24:16-25 for discussion of details in #Mr 13:14-22.

    13:16 {In the field} (eis ton agron). Here #Mt 24:18 has en twi agrwi, showing identical use of eis with accusative and en with the locative.

    13:19 {Which God created} (hen ektisen ho qeos). Note this amplification to the quotation from #Da 12:1.

    13:20 {Whom he chose} (hous exelexato). Indirect aorist middle indicative. In Mark alone. Explains the sovereign choice of God in the end by and for himself.

    13:22 {That they may lead astray} (pros to apoplanain). With a view to leading off (pros and the infinitive). #Mt 24:24 has hwste apoplasqai, so as to lead off.

    13:23 {But take ye heed} (humeis de blepete). Gullibility is no mark of a saint or of piety. Note emphatic position of you (humeis). Credulity ranks no higher than scepticism. God gave us our wits for self-protection. Christ has warned us beforehand.

    13:24 {The sun shall be darkened} (ho helios skotisqesetai). Future passive indicative. These figures come from the prophets (#Isa 13:9f.; Eze 32:7f.; Joe 2:1f.,10f.; Am 8:9; Zep 1:14-16; Zec 12:12). One should not forget that prophetic imagery was not always meant to be taken literally, especially apocalyptic symbols. Peter in #Ac 2:15-21 applies the prophecy of Joel about the sun and moon to the events on the day of Pentecost. See on ¯Mt 24:29-31 for details of verses #24-27.

    13:25 {The stars shall be falling} (hoi asteres esontai piptontes). Periphrastic future indicative, esontai, future middle indicative and piptontes, present active participle.

    13:27 {Shall gather together his elect} (episunaxei tous eklektous autou). this is the purpose of God through the ages. {From the uttermost part of the earth to the uttermost part of heaven} (ap' akrou ges hews akrou ouranou). The Greek is very brief, "from the tip of earth to the tip of heaven." this precise phrase occurs nowhere else.

    13:28 {Coming to pass} (ginomena). Present middle participle, linear action. See on ¯Mt 24:32-36 for details of verses #28-32 (the Parable of the Fig Tree).

    13:32 {Not even the Son} (oude ho huios). There is no doubt as to the genuineness of these words here such as exists in #Mt 24:36. this disclaimer of knowledge naturally interpreted applies to the second coming, not to the destruction of Jerusalem which had been definitely limited to that generation as it happened in A.D. 70.

    13:34 {Commanded also the porter to watch} (kai twi qurwrwi eneteilato hina gregorei) . The porter or door-keeper (qurwros), as well as all the rest, to keep a watch (present subjunctive, grˆgorˆi). this Parable of the Porter is only in Mark. Our ignorance of the time of the Master's return is an argument not for indifference nor for fanaticism, but for alertness and eager readiness for his coming.

    13:35 The four watches of the night are named here: evening (oye), midnight (mesonuktion), cock-crowing (alektorofwnias), morning (prwi).

    13:37 {Watch} (gregoreite). Be on the watch. Present imperative of a verb made on the second perfect, egregora, to be awake. Stay awake till the Lord comes.

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