And Simon and they that were with him followed after him.
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EXPOSITORY (ENGLISH BIBLE)Simon and they that were with him.—This part of the narrative is given by St. Luke also, but not by St. Matthew. The definite statement who they were that followed after Him is, however, peculiar to St. Mark; while St. Luke alone gives their motive: “they stayed Him that He should not depart from them.” They would fain have kept Him at Capernaum, that He might teach them and heal their sick. This is to some extent, perhaps, implied in the words “All men seek for Thee.”Let us go into the next towns, that I may preach there also; for therefore came I forth. Paul saith that God sent him not to baptize, but to preach, 1 Corinthians 1:17. Our Saviour saith not, Let us go into the next towns, that I may work miracles, but that I may preach there also; he doth not say he came forth to work miracles, but to preach: how it comes to pass that some are possessed of so slight an opinion of preaching as to think that it is needless, which our Saviour and St. Paul counted to be their principal work, where, in the mean time, they pretend to derive from Christ, I cannot tell. I am sure preaching was the greatest part of Christ’s work; how it comes to be the least part of ministers’ work since, or how any of them think it sufficient to discharge that work by journeymen, which he thought it not beneath him to do himself, may deserve their examination which make it so. We do not say that preaching is a greater work than prayer, or that it is not ministers’ duty to pray; nor yet that it is greater than administering the sacrament: but this we say, we read of Christ’s preaching often in the synagogues, on the mountain, in a ship; of his public praying we read not, though of his private and secret prayer often. We read expressly that he baptized none. We must have leave to think that our greatest work which our Lord and his apostles were most employed in, and do think others will be of our minds as soon as they shall understand, that if the end of preaching be not turning men from one opinion to another, but from the love and practice of sin to God, there is as much need of it as ever; and that the turning of men from one opinion to another, without a change of heart, as to the love of sin, is but a turning of men from one quarter of the devil’s kingdom to another.
followed after him; some time after he was gone; for he privately withdrew from them, so that they might not be aware when he went, nor apprized of his departure, for some considerable time; which when they were, they set out, in diligent search, and eager pursuit after him, until they found him.And Simon and they that were with him followed after him.
EXEGETICAL (ORIGINAL LANGUAGES)Mark 1:36. κατεδίωξεν: followed Him up; almost pursued Him as a fugitive; verb singular, though more than one followed, Peter, the chief of them, being thought of mainly. A strong term like ἐκβάλλει, Mark 1:12, all allowance made for weakened force in Hellenistic usage.36. Simon] already with his earnest impulsiveness beginning to take the lead. Comp. Luke 8:45; Luke 9:32.
followed after Him] The word in the original is very expressive and only occurs here. It denotes (i) to follow hard upon, (ii) to pursue closely, to track out. “Simon and his friends almost hunted for Him.” It generally implies a hostile intent. It occurs in a good sense in the LXX. rendering of Psalm 23:6, “Thy mercy shall follow me.”Mark 1:36. Ὁ Σίμων καὶ οἱ μετʼ αὐτοῦ, Simon and they that were with him) Already Simon is eminent among them. So Luke 8:45; Luke 9:32. It is not said, for instance, “Thomas and they that were with him.” [Comp. note  on Mark 1:16].
 This is preferred in the margin of both Editions of Bengel, to the omission of the reading τοῦ Σίμωνος, and is therefore marked with the sign ε; with which also the Germ. Vers, agrees on this passage.—E. B.
ABLa have Σίμωνος (and A prefixes τοῦ). Dbc Vulg. and Rec. Text read αὐτοῦ. Only later Uncial MSS. and later Syr. Version read αὐτοῦ τοῦ Σίμωνος.—ED.Verse 36. - And Simon and they that were with him followed after him κατεδίωξαν the word implies an "earnest pursuing." They that were with him would doubtless include Andrew and James and John, and probably others whose enthusiasm had been kindled by Simon Peter. St. Luke, in the parallel passage (Luke 4:42). tells us that "the multitudes sought after him, and came unto him, and would have stayed him, that he should not go from them."
The word found only in Mark. Simon and his companions, as well as the people of the city, seem to have been afraid lest he should have permanently left them. Hence the compound verb indicates that they followed him eagerly; pursued him as if he were fleeing from them. Simon, true to his nature, was foremost in the pursuit: Simon, and they that were with him.
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