Mark 7
Bengel's Gnomon of the New Testament
Then came together unto him the Pharisees, and certain of the scribes, which came from Jerusalem.
Mark 7:1-5. Οἱ Φαρισαῖοιἰδόντες τινὰς τῶν μαθητῶν αὐτοῦ κοιναῖς χερσὶἐσθίοντας ἄρτους (οἱ γὰρκλινῶν) ἔπειτα ἐπερωτῶσιν αὐτὸν οἱ Φαρισαῖοι, κ.τ.λ.) The construction of the language is pendent: from not observing which, some inserted ἐμέμψαντο after ἄρτους. But the whole period, extended by the parenthesis, is sustained by the verb ἐπερωτῶσιν. For the verb is either repeated at the end of the parenthesis, Acts 2:8; Acts 2:11; 1 Corinthians 8:1-4; Jdg 9:16; Jdg 9:19; 2 Samuel 21:2-4; 1 Kings 8:41-42; or it is then in fine [and not till then] set down, as in this passage, and Ephesians 3:1; Ephesians 3:14, and the connection is marked by the particles καὶ, δὲ, οὖν, and in this passage by ἔπειτα.[49] Very similar is the section of Gregory Thaumaturgus, which we shall give in a more contracted form than the original: κατορθοῦται ἡ ψυχὴ, ἵνʼ ὥσπερ ἐν κατόπτρῳ ἑαυτὴν θεωρήσασα (τὸ ἄλογον, καὶ πάλιν τὸ λογικὸν, κ.τ.λ.) ΕΙΤΑ ταῦτα ἐν αὐτῇ κατανοήσασα, τὰ μὲν χείρονα ΕΚΒΑΛΛΟΙ, τὰ δὲ ἀγαθὰ ΕΚΤΡΕΦΟΙ. See Paneg. on Orig., p. 70, etc., ed. Stutgard.—[ἀπὸ Ἱεροσολύμων, from Jerusalem) The Passover had been celebrated there.—V. g.]

[49] BDL Vulg. abc Syr. Memph. read in Mark 7:5, καὶ instead of ἒπειτα. A supports the ἔπειτα, with Rec. Text.—ED. and TRANSL.

And when they saw some of his disciples eat bread with defiled, that is to say, with unwashen, hands, they found fault.
Mark 7:2. Τοῦτʼ ἔστι, that is to say) The Evangelist adds an interpretation, as in Mark 7:11, ch. Mark 5:41, etc.; himself not regarding unwashed hands as defiled.

For the Pharisees, and all the Jews, except they wash their hands oft, eat not, holding the tradition of the elders.
Mark 7:3. Πυγμῇ) Πυγμὴ, the fist.—πυγμῇ, עד הפרק, up to the wrist. See Lightf.—παράδοσιν, the tradition) Its correlative is παρέλαβον, they have received, Mark 7:4.

And when they come from the market, except they wash, they eat not. And many other things there be, which they have received to hold, as the washing of cups, and pots, brasen vessels, and of tables.
Mark 7:4. Ξεστῶν, pitchers [larger vessels]) Whence the contents are emptied into the cups.—κλινῶν, [tables, Engl. Vers.] couches) which were used by persons in reclining to eat at table.

Then the Pharisees and scribes asked him, Why walk not thy disciples according to the tradition of the elders, but eat bread with unwashen hands?
Mark 7:5. Ἐπερωτῶσιν, ask Him) The Pharisees were always giving their whole zeal to mere questionings.—περιπατοῦσιν, walk) הלך is often found in this sense among the Hebrews.

He answered and said unto them, Well hath Esaias prophesied of you hypocrites, as it is written, This people honoureth me with their lips, but their heart is far from me.
Mark 7:6. Ὑποκριτῶν, hypocrites) Indeed, we may derive from this passage a definition of hypocrisy. These Pharisees were a sample of hypocrites in general.

Howbeit in vain do they worship me, teaching for doctrines the commandments of men.
For laying aside the commandment of God, ye hold the tradition of men, as the washing of pots and cups: and many other such like things ye do.
Mark 7:8. Ἀφέντες, laying aside) The antithetic word to hold. The terms akin are, to reject, Mark 7:9, and to make of none effect, Mark 7:13.—τὴν ἐντολὴν the commandment) The commandment is one, even as virtue is one and uncompounded; as opposed to the multiplicity of traditions.—τοῦ Θεοῦτῶν ἀνθρώπων, of God—of men) An evident antithesis.—βαπτισμοὺς ξεστῶν, the washings of pitchers) worthless petty observances.

And he said unto them, Full well ye reject the commandment of God, that ye may keep your own tradition.
Mark 7:9. Καλῶς ἀθετεῖτε, full well ye reject) הטיב, for which the LXX. have κακῶς, i.e. it is well said, when it is so said [It is a true saying that ye, etc.] Just as a true picture of a conflagration is well done. And also they had supposed they were doing well in doing so.—ἵνα, in order that) This is a true accusation against them, although the hypocrites did not think that this was their own intention.

For Moses said, Honour thy father and thy mother; and, Whoso curseth father or mother, let him die the death:
Mark 7:10. Μωσῆς, Moses) by Divine direction.

But ye say, If a man shall say to his father or mother, It is Corban, that is to say, a gift, by whatsoever thou mightest be profited by me; he shall be free.
And ye suffer him no more to do ought for his father or his mother;
Making the word of God of none effect through your tradition, which ye have delivered: and many such like things do ye.
Mark 7:13. Ἧ παρεδώκατε, which ye have delivered) Ye have made into a tradition what was a mere custom among the ancients.

And when he had called all the people unto him, he said unto them, Hearken unto me every one of you, and understand:
Mark 7:14. Ἀκούετε, hearken) An admonition salutary to all, in opposition to the prejudice which is most hostile to true Divine worship.

There is nothing from without a man, that entering into him can defile him: but the things which come out of him, those are they that defile the man.
If any man have ears to hear, let him hear.
Mark 7:16. Εἴ τις ἔχει, if any man have) Few of them comprehended what He had said. See verses following.

And when he was entered into the house from the people, his disciples asked him concerning the parable.
And he saith unto them, Are ye so without understanding also? Do ye not perceive, that whatsoever thing from without entereth into the man, it cannot defile him;
Mark 7:18. Ἔξωθεν, from without) This is added for the sake of explanation.

Because it entereth not into his heart, but into the belly, and goeth out into the draught, purging all meats?
Mark 7:19. Καθάριζον) not polluting, but purging, whilst the wholesome nutriment remains, and the mere refuse so purged away goes out.

And he said, That which cometh out of the man, that defileth the man.
For from within, out of the heart of men, proceed evil thoughts, adulteries, fornications, murders,
Thefts, covetousness, wickedness, deceit, lasciviousness, an evil eye, blasphemy, pride, foolishness:
Mark 7:22. Πλεονεξίαι) Πλεονεξία, πλεονέκτης, πλεονεκτέω, as involving the comparative by implication, denote a kind of mean between theft and rapine, viz., when you aim by various artifices to effect, that your neighbour of himself, but with injury to himself, may unwittingly or unwillingly offer, concede, and assign to you some possession which it is not right you should receive. Yet it approaches nearer to theft, and is more opposed to rapine or open violence; and it is a sin chiefly characteristic of the rich, as the two former are sins of the poor; 1 Corinthians 6:10; 1 Corinthians 5:10.—ἀσέλγεια) a diffuse wantonness [lasciviousness] of mind. Comp. the Syr[50] Version. This and an evil eye are contrary to the ninth and tenth commandments.—ὀφθαλμὸς πονηρὸς, an evil eye) envy and joy at the misfortunes of others.—ἀφροσύνη, foolishness) under which they were labouring, who are refuted in this passage: with this comp. Ye fools, Luke 11:40. This is the reason why foolishness is placed last of all, inasmuch as being that which renders even all the rest incurable. Human corruption has its seat not merely in the will [but in the understanding also. Comp. Mark 7:18.]

[50] yr. the Peschito Syriac Version: second cent.: publ. and corrected by Cureton, from MS. of fifth cent.

All these evil things come from within, and defile the man.
Mark 7:23. Πάντα, all things) O how impure is the fountain of our heart!

And from thence he arose, and went into the borders of Tyre and Sidon, and entered into an house, and would have no man know it: but he could not be hid.
Mark 7:24. Μεθόρια) the common boundaries.—οὐδένα, no man) For He was still within the borders of the land of Israel.[51]

[51] οὐκ ἡδυνήθη λαθεῖν, He could not remain hid) Things were so disposed by the direction of God, that the benefit seemed to have been as if at random, and by fortuitous coincidence, conferred on her as being a heathen woman.—V. g.

For a certain woman, whose young daughter had an unclean spirit, heard of him, and came and fell at his feet:
Mark 7:25. Ἀκούσασα, having heard) If faith could thus be originated by a mere rumour, how much more ought it to be by a text of Scripture, even though but a short one!—γὰρ, for) Referring to the words, He could not be hid, Mark 7:24. Jesus put Himself in her way, along with the help He meant to give her: but He so controlled the affair, that He seemed to have acted as He did towards this Grecian woman, as it were fortuitously, whereas He had undertaken this whole journey for her sake. Comp. Matthew 18:12.—τὸ θυγάτριον, young daughter) Boys also are capable of being the subjects of demoniacal possession, ch. Mark 9:21; Mark 9:24 : as also heathens.

The woman was a Greek, a Syrophenician by nation; and she besought him that he would cast forth the devil out of her daughter.
Mark 7:26. Ἑλληνὶς, a Greek) The term being taken in a wide sense.—Συροφοίνισσα τῷ γένει) Clemens Al., in Protrept., makes mention of τῶν τὴν Φοινίκην Σύρων κατοικούντων. Tertullian mentions Syrophœnice: see ad Marcion: also Justin M. against Trypho. Juvenal speaks of Syrophœnix udus, The feminine Φοίνισσα, which Herodian has, is formed on the same analogy as Κρῆσσα, Λίβυσσα, Θρᾷσσα, Κίλισσα.—[τὸ δαιμόνιον, the demon) that unclean spirit which had taken possession of the girl.—V. g.]

But Jesus said unto her, Let the children first be filled: for it is not meet to take the children's bread, and to cast it unto the dogs.
Mark 7:27. Ἄφες πρῶτον, let first) He does not give her a decided denial; He seems to mark to her the fact, that she is unseasonably importunate.—χορτασθῆναι, be filled) It would have been to derogate from the rights [privileges] of the Jews, had Jesus bestowed more time on the Gentiles.—[οὐ γὰρ καλόν ἐστι, for it is not becoming) That which is not in itself becoming, is altogether so in the case of those who duly pray.—V. g.]

And she answered and said unto him, Yes, Lord: yet the dogs under the table eat of the children's crumbs.
Mark 7:28. Ὑποκάτω τῆς τραπέζης, under the table) Arguing great submission on the part of the woman. Yet she alleges as an argument the nearness [of her country to Israel; as of the dogs to their master’s table].—τῶν παιδίων, of the boys [Engl. Vers., losing the distinction between this and τέκνων, of the children]) who often lavish bread wastely.—Παίδια[52] differ from τέκνα, children, Mark 7:27, a word whereby right to the father’s bread is denoted.

[52] Boys, not necessarily sons, and often used as servants.—ED. and TRANSL.

And he said unto her, For this saying go thy way; the devil is gone out of thy daughter.
Mark 7:29. Διὰ τοῦτον τὸν λόγον, on account of this word [saying]) This word, and the faith exhibited in it. There may be understood, I say to thee. [Often, as well in evil as also in good, the whole power of the soul puts itself forth in one word.—V. g.]—ἐξελήλυθε, is gone out) It was thus that Jesus immediately exhilarated her with the joyous information. [For He knew what had been done. even at a distance, by His power.—V. g.]

And when she was come to her house, she found the devil gone out, and her daughter laid upon the bed.
Mark 7:30. Ἀπελθοῦσα, departing) in faith.—εὗρε τὴν θυγατέρα βεβλημένην ἐπὶ τῆς κλίνης, καὶ τὸ δαιμόνιον ἐξεληλυθός) See App. Crit. Ed. ii. on this passage.[53] The position of the daughter lying on the bed was showing the great power of the demon, which had taken possession of the girl; and also the greater power of Jesus, who had expelled it. The daughter had previously been deprived of all rest. The mother, however, did not of course find the demon itself, which had gone out; but she found that the demon had gone out, i.e. that such was the state of affairs. The force of the verb, found, rests rather on the participle, ἐξεληλυθὸς, than on the noun, ΤῸ ΔΑΙΜΌΝΙΟΝ.

[53] τὸ παίδιον βεβλημένον ἐπὶ τὴν κλίνην καὶ τὸ δαιμ. ἐξελ. is the reading of BLΔ. Τὴν θυγατὲρα βεβλ. is substituted by D Vulg. bc. Aa support Rec. Text, τὸ δαιμόνιον ἐξεληλυθὸς, καὶ τὴν θυγατέρα βεβλημένην ἐπὶ τῆς κλινης.—ED. and TRANSL.

And again, departing from the coasts of Tyre and Sidon, he came unto the sea of Galilee, through the midst of the coasts of Decapolis.
Mark 7:31. Τῶν ὁρίων, the boundaries) That is, through the midst of Decapolis. [The region comprising Decapolis was situated, for the most part, outside of Galilee (Matthew 4:25), beyond Jordan, and some portion of it, if this view be accepted, on the southern side of Galilee, and was accordingly chiefly inhabited by Syrians and heathens. To this region appertain Gadara (Mark 5:20) and Cæarea Philippi. There is frequent mention in the Evangelists, about this time, of the heathen borders; whence it is evident that the Saviour traversed the whole land of Israel.—Harm. p. 313.] [Mark 7:32. κωφὸν, deaf) The narrative of this deaf man, as also of the blind man, concerning whom ch. Mark 8:22 treats, is recorded in Mark alone.—V. g.]

And they bring unto him one that was deaf, and had an impediment in his speech; and they beseech him to put his hand upon him.
And he took him aside from the multitude, and put his fingers into his ears, and he spit, and touched his tongue;
Mark 7:33. Ἀπολαβόμενος, taking him aside) The many outward acts [circumstances] which Jesus employed in this place, and the looks of others, who were healed, stood in the place of words [a sermon] to this deaf man, until he began to hear, inasmuch as Jesus was thereby healing his soul also. [He imparted to the deaf man His healing power first through the avenue of the eyes, then next of the ears.—Harm. p. 343.] Comp. ch. Mark 8:23 concerning the blind man.—πτύσας, spitting) The saliva is clean and salutary in its uses.

And looking up to heaven, he sighed, and saith unto him, Ephphatha, that is, Be opened.
Mark 7:34. Ἐστέναξεν, He groaned) The power of sighs is great when the heart is straitened, στενῷ [whence στενάζω]. He who groans, γέμει.[54] This is a πάθος [not a feeling which we can command at will; see Append.]; for which reason we never find it said in the Psalms, I will sigh, as we find, I will pray, I will cry aloud, I will lament (flebo). Even sudden tears are not under our control. But I will lament, in the Psalms, is an act of deliberate purpose. [That groan moved the wretched sufferer, and awakened in him the desire of relief.—V. g.]—ἐφφαθὰ, Ephphatha) The first word heard by the deaf man.

[54] Γέμω, to be full of a thing; Latin, gemo. Comp. στένω, to straiten by over-fulness; hence to groan. This shows the connection of γέμω and gemo.—ED. and TRANSL.

And straightway his ears were opened, and the string of his tongue was loosed, and he spake plain.
Mark 7:35. Ἀκοαὶ) that is to say, his powers of hearing. Not merely the one passage for sound in the ear.

And he charged them that they should tell no man: but the more he charged them, so much the more a great deal they published it;
Mark 7:36. Αὐτοῖς, them) Those who had borne the dumb man. It was rather the part of the spectators to publish it abroad. And yet the former [the bearers] also published the fame of it, Mark 7:37. Silence was wont especially to be enjoined on those who had been cured of the diseases.—μᾶλλον περισσότερον, the more exceeding abundantly) The comparative contained in the μᾶλλον, more, stands in antithesis to His prohibition: that in the περισσότερον, exceeding abundantly, stands in antithesis to the publishing of it, which they would have made, had there been no prohibition; comp. Php 1:23, note.

And were beyond measure astonished, saying, He hath done all things well: he maketh both the deaf to hear, and the dumb to speak.
Mark 7:37. Καλῶς πεποίηκε, he hath done well) A formula, ἀποδοχῆς, of satisfaction; Acts 10:33; Php 4:14. So in the present, 2 Peter 1:19; in the future, 3 John Mark 7:6. So LXX., 1 Kings 8:18. A similar formula of assenting occurs, Mark 12:32, Thou hast well saidτοὺς) this deaf man and others [Matthew 15:30].

Gnomon of the New Testament by Johann Bengel

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