Mark 1:1 Commentary - Garner-Howes Baptist Commentary
INTRODUCTION TO MARK
Who Speaks or Writes?
John Mark wrote the Gospel according to Mark. His given name was "John," and his Latin surname was "Mark." Nothing is told of his father, but his mother was named Mary, a sister of Barnabas. She had a large home where she lived and where the church met for prayer in Jerusalem, Act 12:12; Col 4:10. Barnabas, Mark's uncle, was a Levite land or estate owner in Cyrus, Act 4:37.
John Mark is believed to have been that anonymous young man who fled naked when about to be arrested in Gethsemane, during the seizure and arrest of Jesus, since Mark is the only one who told of this incident, Mar 14:51-52. His name first appears in the Bible at the time of James' martyrdom and Peter's arrest, Act 12:12-17. He is believed to have been both a convert and later associate of Peter, because Peter referred to him as his own son, in the faith, as Paul did of Timothy, 1Pe 5:13; 1Ti 1:2.
About A.D. 44 Mark went from Jerusalem to Antioch with Paul and Barnabas and later started with them on their first missionary journey, but he turned back in Pamphylia (Turkey), Act 13:3. Later, about A.D. 50, Mark wanted to go with Paul and Barnabas on their second Missionary journey, but Paul firmly refused to let him go. Then Paul and Barnabas parted missionary company. Paul took Silas instead and went into Asia Minor, and to the European Continent, and Barnabas took his nephew, John Mark, and sailed for Cyprus, their native land, Act 15:36-41.
About A.D. 62, Mark appeared with Paul in Rome, Col 4:10; Phm 1:24, then some 4 or 5 years later, shortly before Paul's martyrdom, he wrote Timothy in Ephesus, requesting that he bring Mark and come to him in Rome, "for he is profitable to me for the ministry," 2Ti 4:11.
Though John Mark was not an apostle, he was for much of his life, an associate of the Apostles Peter and Paul. Tradition states that Mark went to Alexandria, Egypt, established churches there, and died as a Christian Martyr under the reign of Nero.
To Whom Does He Speak or Write?
This Gospel by Mark was written to and for the Romans, men of actions, and presents Jesus as the Servant-Son of God; As a Servant, Jesus is presented as ministering, more than "being ministered to," Mar 10:45. Because men are not interested in the genealogy of a servant, no family lineage of Jesus is given by Mark.
Six reasons are suggested for the conclusion that Mark's Gospel was written to and for the Gentile Romans, as Matthew's was written for the Jews:
1) It appears that the Roman readers may not otherwise have known that Jordan was a river, as well as a land, Mar 1:5.
2) That the Pharisees fasted often, Mar 2:8.
3) That the Mount of Olives overlooked the temple area, Mar 13:3.
5) Latin terms (used by Romans) are peculiarly used throughout the book as follows:
a) "Modius" for bushel, Mar 4:21.
b) "Census" for tribute, Mar 12:14.
Since there were good Greek equivalents for these words, it seems to be logically inferred that the Gospel record was written for the Romans, though the message was for the whole world.
About What Does He Speak or Write?
He writes of "The Beginning of the Gospel of Jesus Christ," Mar 1:1, setting forth an inspired history of the public ministry of John the Baptist, the forerunner of Jesus Christ, and then the Servant-Son-Messiah ministry of Jesus Christ.
The two-fold ministry of Jesus (as Servant and Redeemer) is set forth Mar 10:45. The book is also divided in this two-fold manner, as follows:
1) The teaching, preaching, and healing ministry of Jesus, Mark chapters 1-10.
2) The events surrounding His redemptive death and resurrection, Mark chapters 11-16.
When Does He Speak or Write?
Mark seems to have been written near the end of Paul's ministry, perhaps by Mark from Rome, while visiting Paul there, about A.D. 60-66. Because in Mar 15:21, "Simon a Cyrenian," the "father of Alexander and Rufus," is identified as the bearer of Jesus' cross and Paul saluted Rufus in his letter, Rom 16:13, (if it is the same Rufus), it may be concluded that Mark wrote the letter to Gentile believers in Rome, where Rufus lived, or from Rome to readers who knew the family of Alexander and Rufus.
What Was the Occasion?
Because the Roman mind was interested in action and power; more than family lineage or genealogy, Mark omitted the birth and childhood of Jesus, and went directly to His miracle ministry to establish the Deity of the Master.
To appeal to the Gentile-Roman mind that was attuned to servants and servant-action, Mark is distinguished by its use of the Gk. adverb "euthus" forty two (42) times, more times than in all the rest of the New Testament, and is translated 1)Forthwith, 2) Immediately, 3) Straightway, 4) Anon, or 5) Suddenly. This is the way a servant is to serve or obey his master. And this is how nature responded to the voice of God's Son-Servant.
DEITY OF JESUS DEMONSTRATED (in Four Realms of Miracles)
Thirty-five Miracles are described:
I. In Healing Physical Ills, (17) Examples:
1. The nobleman's son, in Capernaum, Joh 4:46-54.
2. The infirm man of thirty-eight years, Joh 5:1-9.
8. Two blind men, Mat 9:27-31.
9. A deaf and dumb man, Mar 7:31-37.
10. The blind man at Bethsaida, Mar 8:22-26.
11. The blind man at Jerusalem, Joh 9:1-38.
12. The woman of 18 years' bent-body made straight, Luk 13:10-17.
14. The man with dropsy, Luk 14:1-6.
15. The ten lepers, Luk 17:11-19.
17. The ear of Malchus, Luk 22:50-51.
II. In the Healing of the Demon Possessed, (6) Examples:
4. The Dumb Demoniac, Mat 9:32-34.
III. Miracles Over Natures Forces, (9) Examples:
1. The first, water turned to wine, Joh 2:1-11; In Cana of Galilee.
2. The draught (catch) of fishes near Capernaum, Luk 5:1-11.
3. Another draught of fishes, Joh 21:6.
8. Tax money, Mat 17:24-27.
IV. Miracles in Raising the Dead (3) Examples:
2. The widow's son at Nain, Luk 7:11-15.
3. Lazarus at Bethany, Joh 11:1-44.
The miracles of Jesus were done by the power of God to authenticate His deity and mission to the world. They were done by the will of Jesus, or at His word, sometimes accompanied by a touch, or laying on of His hands, or the use of saliva, expressing His human as well as divine affections for needy men.'
In addition to the thirty-five (35) miracles recounted above, the following passages describe the nature and purpose of the miracle ministry of our Lord:
Joh 2:23 declares: "Now when He was in Jerusalem at the passover, in the feast day, many believed in His name, when they saw the miracles which He did."
Mat 4:23; Mat 9:35 states, "Now Jesus went about all Galilee, teaching in their synagogues, and preaching the gospel of the kingdom, healing all manner of diseases among the people. And Jesus went about all the cities and villages, teaching in their synagogues, and preaching the gospel of the kingdom, and healing every sickness and every disease among the people."
Mat 4:24 recounts, "And His fame went throughout all Syria: and they brought unto Him all sick people that were taken with divers diseases and torments, and those which were possessed with devils, and those which were lunatick, and those that had the palsy; and He healed them."
Luk 4:40 asserts, "Now when the sun was setting, all they that had any sick with divers diseases brought them unto Him; and He laid His hands on everyone of them, and healed them."
Mat 15:30-31 reports, "And great multitudes came unto Him, having with them those that were lame, blind, dumb, maimed, and many others, and cast them down at Jesus' feet; and He healed them. Insomuch that the multitude wondered, when they saw the dumb to speak, the maimed to be whole, the lame to walk, and the blind to see: and they glorified the God of Israel."
Mar 6:53-56 reads, "And when they had passed over, they came into the land of Gennesaret, and drew to the shore.
And when they were come out of the ship, straightway they knew Him, And ran through that whole region round about, and began to carry about in beds those that were sick, where they heard He was.
And whithersoever He entered, into villages, or cities, or country, they laid the sick in the streets, and besought Him that they might touch if it were but the border of His garment: and as many as touched Him were made whole."
Mat 19:1-2 states, "And it came to pass, that when Jesus had finished these saying, He departed from Galilee, and came into the coasts of Judea beyond Jordan;
And great multitude's followed Him, and He healed them there."
Mar 1:32-34 reads, "And at even, when the sun did set, they brought unto Him all that were diseased, and them that were possessed with devils. And all the city was gathered together at the door.
And He healed many that were sick of divers diseases, and cast out many devils; and suffered not the devils to speak, because they knew Him."
Joh 21:25 summarizes, "And there are also many other things which Jesus did, the which, if they should be written every one, I suppose that even the world itself could not contain the books that should be written."
Joh 20:30-31 reaffirms the Divine purpose of these miracles,
"And many other signs truly did Jesus in the presence of His disciples, which are not written in this book: But these are written, that ye might believe that Jesus is the Christ, the Son of God; and that believing ye might have life through His name."
APPROX. CHRONOLOGY OF PUBLIC LIFE OF JESUS
26 A.D.Fall or Early Winter;
d) First miracle in Cana of Galilee, Joh 2:1-11.
a) Cleansed temple in Jerusalem, Joh 2:13-22.
a) Return thru Samaria, Joh 4:1-5.
b) Galilean ministry begins . . . last's about 2 years, Luk 9:51; Joh
b) Summer: '
1) The twelve apostles chosen, Mar 3:13-19.
d) Passover . . . the 5,000 fed, Mar 6:30-52.
g) December, ending of Galilean ministry, Luk 9:51.
h) Again visits Jerusalem, Joh 10:22.
OUTLINE OF MARK
I. INTRODUCING JESUS THE SERVANT: (Mar 1:1-13.)
1) His forerunner, John the Baptist, v. 1-8.`
2) His Baptism, by John the Baptist, v. 9-16.
2) His Temptation, by the Devil in the Mount, v. 12, 13.
1) Beginning in Galilee, by the Seashore, v. 14.
2) Calling the Disciples, v. 15-20.
3) Begins Miracle Ministry, v. 21-28.
4) Peter's Wife's Mother Healed, v. 29-31.
5) A Sunset Mass Healing, v. 32-34.
6) First Preaching Tour Preceded by Solitary Prayer, v. 35-39.
7) Cleansing and Change of a Leper, y. 40-45.
8) Palsy Man Healed, (Mar 2:1-12.)
9) The Call of Matthew (Levi), Pharisee Criticism, v. 13-22.
10) Lord of the Sabbath Defends His Disciples, v. 23-28.
11) Withered Hand Restored, (Mar 3:1-5.)
12) The Multitudes (Masses) Healed, v. 6-12.
13) The Call to, and Ordination of the Twelve Apostles, v. 13-21 .
14) Blasphemy - - Unpardonable Sin, v. 22-30.
15) The New Relationship in Christ, v. 31-35.
16) Parable of the Sower, (Mar 4:1-12.)
17) The Sower Parable Explained, v. 13-20.
18) Parable of the Candle, v. 21, 25.
19) The Mysterious Seed Growth, v. 26-29.
20) The Mustard Seed Parable, v. 30-34.
21) Jesus Stilled the Storm, v. 35-41.
22) Maniac of Gadara, Made Whole, Set Free, (Mar 5:1-20).
23) Jairus' Plea for Healing of His Daughter, v. 21-24.
24) Woman Healed of Issue of Blood, v. 25-34.
25) Jairus' Daughter Raised from Death, v. 35-43.
1) Jesus Again in Nazareth, Meets Skepticism, v. 1-6.
2) Call and Sending Forth of the Twelve, v. 7-13.
3) Herod's Murder of John, Tormented Conscience, v. 14-29.
4) Return, Report, and Rest of the Twelve, v. 30, 31 .
5) Five Thousand Fed, Fragments Taken Up, v. 32-44.
6) When Jesus Walked on the Sea Waters, v. 45-52.
7) Jesus Healed Masses in Gennesaret Area, v. 53-56.
8) Tradition of Pharisees, Chided (Rebuked), (Mar 7:1-23).
9) What Defiles a Man, v. 15-23.
10) Syrophenician Woman's Daughter Healed, v. 24-30.
11) A Deaf and Dumb Man Healed, v. 31-37.
12) Four Thousand Hungry Are Fed, (Mar 8:1-9).
13) The Pharisees Ask for a Sign, v. 10-13.
14) The Leaven (Putrefaction) of the Pharisees, v. 14-21.
15) Blind Man Healed Near Bethsaida, v. 22-26.
1) Peter's Confession of Faith, v. 27-33.
2) Four Things Jesus Taught Them, v. 31-33.
3) Following Jesus, Discipleship, True Value of a Soul, v. 34-38.
4) His Transfiguration Witnessed, (Mar 9:1-13).
5) Powerless Disciples - - The Mighty Christ, v. 14-29.
6) Jesus Foretells His Death and Resurrection, v. 30-32.
7) Dispute Over Who Shall Be Greatest, v. 33-37.
8) Rebuke of Sectarianism, v. 38-41 .
9) Jesus' Solemn Warning About Hell, v. 42-50.
10) Jesus' Words Regarding Law of Divorce, (Mar 10:1-12).
11) Jesus Blessed Little Children, v. 13-16.
12) The Rich Young Ruler, v. 17-22.
13) The Warning Regarding Riches, v. 23-31.
14) Jesus Again Foretold His Death and Resurrection, v. 32-34.
15) James and John Rebuked for Selfish Desire, v. 35-45.
16) Healing and Salvation of Blind Bartimaeus, v. 46-52.
1) Triumphal Presentation of Servant-King, (Mar 11:1-11).
2) Barren Fig Tree Cursed, v. 12-14.
3) Jesus Purifies the Temple, v. 15-21 .
4) Instructions on Prayer and Faith, v. 22-26.
5) Authority of Jesus Questioned, v. 27-33.
6) Demand of Householder of Vineyard man, (Mar 12:12).
7) The Question about Paying Tribute, v. 13-17.
8) Jesus Answers the Sadducees, v. 18-27.
9) The Two Great Commandments, v. 28-34.
10) Jesus Questions Pharisees about the Messiah, v. 35-40.
11) Jesus Teaches about the Widow's Mite, v. 41-44.
VI. PROPHECIES OF JESUS THE SERVANT, (Mar 13:1-37)
1) Olivet Discourse, Three Questions of the Future, v. 1-4.
2) Signs of His Coming Set Forth, v. 5-13.
3) The Great Tribulation for Israel Described, v. 14-23.
4) The Lord's Return in Glory Described, v. 24-27.
5) The Fig Tree Parable, v. 28-33.
6) Obligation to Watch for Return of Jesus, v. 34-37.
1) The Plot (or Conspiracy to Put Jesus to Death, v. 1, 2.
2) Mary Anoints Jesus in Bethany, v. 3-9.
3) Judas Covenants to Betray Jesus, v. 10, 11 .
4) Preparation of the Annual Passover, v. 12-16.
5) The Last Passover, v. 17-21 .
6) Our Lord Institutes the Lord's Supper, v. 22-25.
7) Peter's Denial of Jesus Foretold, v. 26-31 .
8) Agony in the Garden, v. 32-34.
a) The First Garden Prayer, v. 35-38.
b) The Second Garden Prayer, v. 39, 40.
c) The Third Gethsemane Prayer, v. 41, 42.
9) The Betrayal and Arrest of Jesus, v. 43-46.
10) Peter Smites With Sword, Follows Afar Off, v. 47-52.
11) Jesus Hailed Before the High Priest and Sanhedrin, v. 53-65.
12) Peter's Denial of Jesus - - the Cock Crows, v. 66-72.
13) Jesus Sent for Trial before Pilate, (Mar 15:1-6)
14) Barabbas, Not Jesus, Released, v. 7-15.
15) Jesus Mocked and Crowned with Thorns, v. 16-23.
16) Jesus Crucified, v. 24-41.
17) The Burial or Entombment of Jesus, v. 42-47.
VIII. THE RESURRECTION OF JESUS THE SERVANT, FOLLOWING DAY EVENTS, (Mar 16:1-16)
1) The Resurrection Announcement, v. 1-8.
2) First Day Appearance of Jesus, v. 9-14.
3) Jesus Gives the Great Commission, v. 15-20.
VERSE BY VERSE COMMENTS ON MARK:
MARK THE INTRODUCTION OF THE SERVANT, V. 1-13 BY JOHN THE BAPTIST, HIS FORERUNNER, V. 1-8
1) "The beginning," (arche) "(The) beginning, or origin, or fountainhead." The idea is that here begins Mark's account of the gospel concerning or relating to Jesus Christ the Son-Servant of God, Mat 1:1; Luk 1:1-4; Joh 1:13. He wrote for Romans and Gentiles about Christ as a servant, therefore omitted the genealogy of Jesus, since none is interested in a servant's family lineage.
2) "Of the gospel of Jesus Christ," (tou evangelliou lesou Christou) "Of the gospel (good news) of Jesus Christ," which is the "spirit of prophecy, " Rev 19:10. The term "Christ,' here appears as a proper name. The gospel that Mark therefore recounts is a personal gospel, apart from which person, no salvation exists, Joh 14:6; Act 4:12; Rom 1:16.
3) "The Son of God;” (though omitted from most early manuscripts the idea is implicit in the title "Christ," Joh 3:16; Joh 20:21; Gal 4:4-5. He came to do and finish the work His Father sent Him to do, Luk 19:10; Joh 17:1-5.
"The Gospel is an anthem from the harps of heaven; the music of the River of Life washing its shores on high, and pouring in cascades upon the earth. Not so cheerful was the song of the morning stars; nor the shout of the sons of God so joyful. Gushing from the fountains of eternal harmony, it was first heard on earth in a low tone of solemn gladness, uttered in Eden by the Lord God Himself. This gave the key-note of the Gospel-song. Patriarchs caught it up, and taught it to the generations following. It breathed from the harp of the Psalmist, and rang like a clarion from tower and mountain top, as prophets proclaimed the year of jubilee. Fresh notes from heaven have enriched the harmony, as the Lord of hosts and His angels have revealed new promises, and called on the suffering children of Zion to be joyful in their King." - Dr. Hoge
Consult other comments:
Garner-Howes Baptist Commentary
The Garner-Howes Baptist Commentary of the Whole Bible was originally published as a 23-volume set by Albert Garner (principal author) along with J. C. Howes, G.F. Crumley, and Eugene Garner in 1985. The Blessed Hope Foundation has released this digital edition into the public domain.