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so this the Lord still added a special application of the subject, for the benefit of the disciples: “Verily I say unto you, That this generation—this race of
Ι Christians-shall not pass, till all these things be done. Heaven and earth shall pass away, but My words shall not pass away. But of that day and of the hour knoweth no man, nor the angels which are in heaven, nor the Son, but the Father only. Take ye heed, watch and pray! for ye know not when the time is. As a man, taking a far journey, who left his house, and gave to his servants authority—the management of his goods—to each man his work, and commanded the porter to keep-goodwatch; watch therefore; for ye know not when the master of the house cometh ; at even, or at midnight, or at the cockcrowing, or in the morning. And what I say unto you I say unto all, Watch!'
1. Mark alone names the disciples who asked the Lord regarding the coming judgments-Peter, James, John, and Andrew. He tells us that they asked Him in a confidential circle, and that it was such a circle, therefore, to which Jesus made these communications. Instead of the loquoì in Matthew and Luke, and the fóßntpa, etc., in Luke, he has the rapazai. Certainly a not entirely accredited addition. The three cycles of the judgment are clearly distinguished, as also in Matthew. The more doctrinal passage (vers. 10-12) in the first cycle of Matthew (chap. xxiv.) he leaves out, as it seems to be made good by a similar, but not identical, passage in the second cycle. He also leaves out, however, the highly significant passage, Matt. vers. 26–28. On the other hand, he gives the delineation of the relatives persecuting each other in strong and vivid colours. The 11th verse of Mark is found in Matthew among the instructions given to the disciples. The description of the coming of Christ he has given, as compared with Matthew, in a curtailed form. In the declaration of Christ, that no one knows the time of the end of the world, but the Father only, he has the important adjunct—nor the Son. He brings out in the strongest form the fundamental idea of the discourse concerning the last things, in an important passage which he alone has (vers. 33–36)—for it is not to be confounded with the similar one in Matthew,-in the rapidly sketched parable which assigns to all the disciples the position of door-keepers in the house of the Lord ; and in the concluding word of Jesus, Watch.
1 Saunier is of opinion (p. 141) that Mark concluded from the rat' idian in Matthew, that they were the known, trusted disciples of Jesus. But how in this case would Andrew have been mentioned ? Gfrörer goes the length of remarking, 'When anything occurs within the narrower circle of the disciples, the four always take the precedence.'
2. As regards the eschatological announcements of Jesus, Weisse finds it by no means impossible, not even improbable, that a real gift of prophecy, a magical clairvoyance, was concerned in them' (i. 591). Nevertheless he thinks that the prophecy regarding the false prophets and pseudo-messiahs, literally understood, was certainly not realized. By those who are with child and give suck,' he thinks should be understood those who desire to labour or produce, within the old order of things. The description of the end of the world itself, Weisse designates as a singular imagination. Jesus Himself, he says, must have spoken such things only in a symbolical sense.
THE HISTORY OF THE PASSION OF JESUS.
(Chap. xiv. xv.)
When the Lord made this disclosure to the disciples, it was only two days to the double feast of the paschal lamb and of unleavened bread. About this time, the chief priests and the scribes held much counsel together, how they might take the Lord by craft, and put Him to death. But although they constantly debated this point, and the feast of the Passover was already so near at hand, they were still quite undecided regarding the manner of carrying out their purpose, and regarding the time; and as regards the latter, they even came to the resolution -by no means, at least, to institute proceedings against the Lord during the feast, lest there should be an uproar among the people.
But the way was already prepared for a departure from this resolution through the treachery of Judas. When Jesus-namely, some days before—was in Bethany, in the house of Simon the leper, and there sat at meat, there came a woman having an alabaster-box full of ointment of pure spikenard, very valuable ; and she brake the box, and poured it on His head. There were some there who expressed their displeasure amongst themselves, and said, Why has this waste—this loss—of the ointment been made? This ointment might have been sold for more than three hundred pence, and have been given to the poor. And they
' murmured against her. But Jesus said, 'Let her alone! why trouble ye her? she hath done a good work on Me. For ye have the poor with you always; and whensoever ye will, ye may do them good : but Me ye have not always. She hath done what she could : she hath beforehand—with forethought anticipating the duty—anointed My body to the burying. Verily I say unto you, Wheresoever this Gospel shall be preached throughout the whole world, it shall also be told what she hath done, for a memorial of her.' And Judas Iscariot, one of the Twelve, went —now—unto the chief priests, to betray Him unto them. When they heard this proposal, they were glad—they fell into a state of satanic joyous excitement—and promised to give him money. And from this time he occupied himself with the thought, how he might betray Him at a convenient opportunity.
Thus stood the traitor in the same position with the enemies of Jesus. They were of one mind, that Jesus should be betrayed and condemned; and also on the point, that they did not yet know an opportune occasion, and without intermission brooded in their minds how they might find one. Whilst, however, the enemies of Jesus were prepared to put off His death till after the feast, the disciple was driven forward by a stronger impulse of the evil one to hasten the betrayal, and to make the commencement of the feast itself the moment for effecting it.
At the festive table in Bethany, the thought of betraying Jesus had ripened in his mind, through the exasperation excited by His anointing. On a second festive occasion, at the celebration of the Passover, the resolution was formed, to carry out his treacherous purpose without delay.
On the first day of unleavened bread, when the paschal lamb was killed, the disciples said to the Lord, “Where wilt Thou
6 that we go and prepare, that Thou mayest eat the Passover?'
Thereupon the Lord sendeth forth two of His disciples, saying, *Go ye into the city: and there shall meet you a man bearing a pitcher of water; follow him. And where he shall go in, there say to the goodman of the house; The Master saith, Where is the guest-chamber, in which I shall eat the Passover with My disciples ? And he will show you a large upper room, furnished and prepared. There make ready for us.' And His disciples went forth, came into the city, and found as He had said unto them. And they made ready the Passover. And in the evening, Jesus came—after-with the Twelve. When they now reclined at table, and did eat, Jesus said, “Verily I say unto you, One of you which eateth with Me shall betray Me. And they began to be sorrowful—became ever more sorrowful—and said unto Him, one after the other, 'Is it I ?' and another, "Is it I ?' Jesus answered and said unto them, One of the Twelve that dippeth with Me in the dish. The Son of man indeed goeth, as it is written of Him. But woe to that man by whom the Son of man is betrayed! It were better for him if he had not been born—that man.' On this follows the institution of the holy supper.
But the traitor disappears. And as they did eat, Jesus took bread, gave thanks, brake it, gave it to them, and said, “Take, eat; this is My body.' And taking the cup, He gave thanks, and gave it to them; and they all drank of it. And He said unto them, “This is My blood, that of the New Testament, which is shed for
many. Verily I say unto you, Henceforth I will drink no more of the fruit of the vine, until that day that I drink it new—as a new thing—in the kingdom of God.'
Then followed their departure to the Mount of Olives, after they had sung an hymn. On the way thither, Jesus said unto them, “All ye shall be offended in Me this night. For it is written, I will smite the Shepherd, and the sheep shall disperse (Zech. xii. 7). But after I am risen, I will go before you into Galilee. But Peter said unto Him, “If all shall be offended in Thee, yet will I not !' And Jesus saith unto him, “Verily I
According to Weisse (i. 602), Mark in this expression only means to say—who eateth with me, without indicating the traitor. There is lacking here a right conception of the paschal feast. It was an irregularity, that the traitor dipped his hand with Him in the dish at all, which is to be explained as the result of excitement. See above, vol. iv. p. 168.
say unto thee, To-day, in this night, before the cock crow twice, thou shalt deny Me thrice.' But he spoke still more vehemently, 'If I must die with Thee, I will not deny Thee.' In like manner spoke they all.
Amidst these communications, they came to a place which was named Gethsemane. Jesus saith to His disciples, “Sit ye here, while I shall pray.' And He taketh with Him Peter, and James, and John. Then began He to tremble, and to be very sad—to be affected with the most violent agitation and deepest depression—and He said unto them, “My soul is exceeding sorrowful unto death ; tarry ye here, and watch. Then went He a little farther, and fell on the ground, and prayed that, if it were possible, the hour might pass from Him, saying, “Abba, My Father, all things are possible unto Thee; take away this cup from Me: nevertheless not what I will, but what Thou wilt. And He cometh and findeth them sleeping, and saith unto Peter, • Simon, sleepest thou? Couldest not thou watch one hour ? Watch and pray, that ye enter not into temptation : the spirit indeed is willing, but the flesh is weak. And again He went away and prayed, and spake the same words. And when He returned, He found them again asleep; for their eyes were heavy with sleep. And they knew not what they-half awakeanswered Him. Then He cometh the third time, and saith unto them, 'Sleep ye then also the remainder of the time, and rest? It is now past! The hour is come. Behold! the Son of man is betrayed into the hands of sinners. Rise up! Let us go! Lo, he that betrayeth Me is at hand!'
A moment later, the betrayal and the seizure of Jesus took place. Immediately, while He yet spake to the three disciples, came Judas, who was one of the Twelve, and with him a great company, with swords and with staves, from the chief priests, and the scribes, and the elders. And he that betrayed Him had given them a sign, saying, “Whomsoever I shall kiss, that same is He; take Him, and lead Him away with caution. And when he was come, he goeth straightway to Him with the words, · Rabbi, Rabbi;' and then kissed Him. And the others laid their hands on Him, and took Him. But one of them that stood by drew his sword, smote the servant of the high priest, and cut off his
And Jesus answered and said unto them, Ye are come out, as against a robber, with swords and with staves to take Me.