|Matthew Henry's Concise Commentary|
1:23-28 The devil is an unclean spirit, because he has lost all the purity of his nature, because he acts in direct opposition to the Holy Spirit of God, and by his suggestions defiles the spirits of men. There are many in our assemblies who quietly attend under merely formal teachers; but if the Lord come with faithful ministers and holy doctrine, and by his convincing Spirit, they are ready to say, like this man, What have we to do with thee, Jesus of Nazareth! No disorder could enable a man to know Jesus to be the Holy One of God. He desires to have nothing to do with Jesus, for he despairs of being saved by him, and dreads being destroyed by him. See whose language those speak, that say to the Almighty, Depart from us. This unclean spirit hated and dreaded Christ, because he knew him to be a Holy One; for the carnal mind is enmity against God, especially against his holiness. When Christ by his grace delivers souls out of the hands of Satan, it is not without tumult in the soul; for that spiteful enemy will disquiet those whom he cannot destroy. This put all who saw it upon considering, What is this new doctrine? A work as great often is wrought now, yet men treat it with contempt and neglect. If this were not so, the conversion of a notorious wicked man to a sober, righteous, and godly life, by the preaching of a crucified Saviour, would cause many to ask, What doctrine is this?
Verse 23. - And straightway there was in their synagogne a man with an unclean spirit. According to the best authorities, the sentence in the Greek runs thus, Καὶ εὐθὺς η΅ν ἐν τῇ συναγωγῇ αὐτῶν· And straightway there was in their synagogue, etc. This word "straightway" adds much force to the sentence. It marks the immediate effect of our Lord's preaching. A man with an unclean spirit. The words are literally, "a man in an unclean spirit" (ἐν πνεύματι ἀκάθαρτῳ); in his grasp, so to speak; possessed by him. There can be no reasonable doubt as to the personality of this unclean spirit (see Mark 4:24; Mark 12:41). The man was so absolutely in the power of this evil spirit that he seemed to dwell in him; just as the world is said by St. John (1 John 5:19) to lie "in the evil one" (ἐν τῷ πονηρῷ). And he cried out. Who cried out? Surely the unclean spirit, using the possessed man as his instrument. In the case of a true prophet, inspired by the Holy Spirit, he is permitted to use his own gifts, his reason, and even his own particular manner of speech; whereas here a false and lying spirit usurps the organs of speech, and makes them his own.
Gill's Exposition of the Entire Bible
And there was in their synagogue,.... In the synagogue of the Capernaites, at the same time that Jesus was teaching there,
a man with an unclean spirit: not with an unclean heart, for there were doubtless many such there, but that had a devil; for in Luke 4:33, it is said, "he had a spirit of an unclean devil": so called, because he is impure in himself, and the cause of uncleanness in men, in which he delights: and such spirits sometimes are where religious persons meet, but with no good design; either to disturb the preacher, or to divert the hearer, that the word may be unfruitful and unprofitable:
and he cried out: either the man, or rather the unclean spirit in him, who had possessed his body, and made use of the organs of it: he cried out through dread of the majesty of Christ, whose presence he could not bear; and through grief and envy at the success of his ministration, and the influence it had upon the minds of men; and through fear of being dispossessed of the man, in whom he was.
Jamieson-Fausset-Brown Bible Commentary
23. And there was in their synagogue a man with an unclean spirit—literally, "in an unclean spirit"—that is, so entirely under demoniacal power that his personality was sunk for the time in that of the spirit. The frequency with which this character of "impurity" is ascribed to evil spirits—some twenty times in the Gospels—is not to be overlooked.
and he cried out—as follows:
Mark 1:23 Parallel Commentaries
Mark 1:23 NIV
Mark 1:23 NLT
Mark 1:23 ESV
Mark 1:23 NASB
Mark 1:23 KJV
Bible Hub: Online Parallel Bible