Mark 11:1
And when they came near to Jerusalem, to Bethphage and Bethany, at the mount of Olives, he sends forth two of his disciples,
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EXPOSITORY (ENGLISH BIBLE)
XI.

(1-10) And when they came nigh.—See Notes on Matthew 21:1-11.

Unto Bethphage and Bethany.—The better MSS. give “Bethany” only.

Mark 11:1-3. And when they came nigh to Jerusalem — See on Matthew 21:1-3; unto Bethphage and Bethany — The limits of Bethany reached to the mount of Olives: and joined to those of Bethphage, which was part of the suburbs of Jerusalem, and reached from the mount of Olives to the walls of the city. Our Lord was now come to the place where the boundaries of Bethphage and Bethany met. Ye shall find a colt tied — In Matthew we read, an ass tied, and a colt with her, but Mark and Luke only mention the colt, because, it seems, our Lord rode on him only.11:1-11 Christ's coming into Jerusalem thus remarkably, shows that he was not afraid of the power and malice of his enemies. This would encourage his disciples who were full of fear. Also, that he was not disquieted at the thoughts of his approaching sufferings. But all marked his humiliation; and these matters teach us not to mind high things, but to condescend to those of low estate. How ill it becomes Christians to take state, when Christ was so far from claiming it! They welcomed his person; Blessed is he that cometh, the He that should come, so often promised, so long expected; he comes in the name of the Lord. Let him have our best affections; he is a blessed Saviour, and brings blessings to us, and blessed be He that sent him. Praises be to our God, who is in the highest heavens, over all, God blessed for ever.See this passage illustrated in the notes at Matthew 21:1-16.CHAPTER 11

Mr 11:1-11. Christ's Triumphal Entry into Jerusalem, on the First Day of the Week. ( = Mt 21:1-9; Lu 19:29-40; Joh 12:12, 19).

See on [1475]Lu 19:29-40.Mark 11:1-11 Christ rideth into Jerusalem in triumph,

Mark 11:12-14 curseth a barren fig tree,

Mark 11:15-19 drives the buyers and sellers out of the temple.

Mark 11:20-26 The cursed fig tree is dried up: Christ exhorteth

to faith in prayer, and to forgiveness of enemies,

Mark 11:27-33 and silences the priests and others, who called in

question his authority.

Matthew saith nothing of Bethany, mentioned by Mark and Luke. It was the town of Lazarus, John 11:1. Some think that Bethany was rather a tract of the Mount of Olives than a town, and that Bethphage was a kind of suburbs to Jerusalem, at the remotest part of which Bethany began, but the town itself called Bethany was fifteen furlongs, near two miles, from Jerusalem. It was the place from which Christ ascended to heaven, Luke 24:50, a sabbath day’s journey from Jerusalem, Acts 1:12, at some distance from the town called Bethany. From this place, called still Bethany, upon the borders of Bethphage, he sent out two of his disciples.

And when they came nigh to Jerusalem,.... The Syriac and Ethiopic versions read, "when he came nigh"; that is, Jesus; though not without his disciples, nor the multitude:

unto Bethphage and Bethany; two places so called, near Jerusalem: Bethphage began where Bethany ended, and reached to the city itself. The Vulgate Latin only makes mention of Bethany; See Gill on Matthew 21:1.

At the Mount of Olives; near which, the above places were:

he sendeth forth two of his disciples; perhaps Peter and John.

And {1} when they came nigh to Jerusalem, unto Bethphage and Bethany, at the mount of Olives, he sendeth forth two of his disciples,

(1) A graphic image of the spiritual kingdom of Christ on earth.

EXEGETICAL (ORIGINAL LANGUAGES)
Mark 11:1-11. See on Matthew 21:1-11. Comp. Luke 19:29-44. Mark narrates with greater freshness and particularity than Matthew, who partly abridges, but partly also already comments (Mark 11:4-5) and completes (Mark 11:10 f.).

εἰς Βηθφ. κ. Βηθ.] a more precise local definition to εἰς Ἱεροσ.: when they come into the neighbourhood of Jerusalem, (namely) into the neighbourhood of Bethphage and Bethany, which places are situated on the Mount of Olives. Comp. the double εἰς, Mark 11:11.

Mark 11:2. εἰς τὴν κώμην κ.τ.λ.] Bethphage, which was first named as the nearest to them. See also Matthew 21:1 f., where Bethany as explanatory is omitted.

πῶλον] without more precise definition, but, as is obvious of itself, the foal of an ass. Jdg 10:4; Jdg 12:14; Zechariah 9:9; Genesis 49:11.

ἐφʼ ὃν οὐδεὶς κ.τ.λ.] This notice, which in Matthew is not adopted[141] into the narrative, is an addition supplied by reflective tradition, arising out of the sacred destination of the animal (for to a sacred purpose creatures as yet unused were applied, Numbers 19:2; Deuteronomy 21:3; 1 Samuel 6:7; Wetstein in loc.). Comp. Strauss, II. p. 276 f.

On φέρετε (see the critical remarks), comp. Genesis 47:16 : ΦΈΡΕΤΕ ΤᾺ ΚΤΉΝΗ ὙΜῶΝ, Hom. Od. iii. 117. Therefore it is not unsuitable (Fritzsche); even the change of the tenses (λύσατεφέρετε) has nothing objectionable in it. See Kühner, II. p. 80.

Mark 11:3. ΤΊ] wherefore; to this corresponds the subsequent ὅτι, because.

καὶ εὐθέως κ.τ.λ.] this Jesus says; it is not the disciples who are to say it (Origen; comp. the critical remarks), whereby a paltry trait would be introduced into the commission.

ὧδε, hither, Plato, Prot. p. 328 D; Soph. Trach. 496; O. T. 7; El. 1149. Not yet so used in Homer.

Mark 11:4. εὗρονἀμφόδου] a description characteristic of Mark; ΤῸ ἌΜΦΟΔΟΝ and Ἡ ἌΜΦΟΔΟς (comp. ἈΜΦΌΔΙΟΝ in Lucian, Rhet. praec. 24, 25) is not simply the way, but the way that leads round (winding way). Jeremiah 17:27; Jeremiah 47:2; Jeremiah 47:7; Aristot. de part. ani. III. 2, p. 663, 36 (codd., see Lobeck, Paralip. p. 248), and the examples in Wetstein, also Koenig and Schaefer, ad Gregor. Cor. p. 505.

Mark 11:5. τί ποιεῖτε κ.τ.λ.] Comp. Acts 21:13.

Mark 11:8. On the only correct form ΣΤΙΒΆς, not ΣΤΟΙΒΆς, see Fritzsche. The meaning is: litter, ἀπὸ ῥάβδων καὶ χλωρῶν χόρτων στρῶσις καὶ φύλλων, Hesychius. Very frequent in the classical writers. Litter (branches and leaves) was cut from the fields that were near (ἈΓΡῶΝ, see the critical remarks).

Mark 11:10. Ἡ ἘΡΧΟΜΈΝΗ ΒΑΣΙΛΕΊΑ ΤΟῦ ΠΑΤΡ. ἩΜ. Δ.] i.e. the coming kingdom of the Messiah. Its approaching manifestation, on the eve of occurring with the entry of the Messiah, was seen in the riding of Jesus into Jerusalem. And it is called the kingdom of David, so far as it is the fulfilment of the type given in the kingdom of David, as David himself is a type of the Messiah, who is even called David among the Rabbins (Schoettgen, Hor. II. p. 10 f.). Mark did not avoid mention of the “Son of David” (in opposition to Hilgenfeld; comp. Mark 10:47, Mark 12:35), but Matthew added it; in both cases without special aim. The personal expression, however (comp. Luke: βασιλεύς, which Weizsäcker regards as the most original), easily came into the tradition.

Mark 11:11. ΕἸς ἹΕΡΟΣ. ΕἸς ΤῸ ἹΕΡΌΝ] After the rejection of ΚΑΊ (see the critical remarks) the second ΕἸς is to be understood as a more precise specification, similar to that in Mark 11:1.

ὀψίας ἤδη οὔσης τῆς ὥρας] as the hour was already late. ὀψίας is here an adjective. Taken as a substantive, τῆς ὥρας (evening of the day-time) would not be applicable to it; expressions with ὈΨΈ (as Dem. 541, ult. ὈΨῈ Τῆς ὭΡΑς ἘΓΊΓΝΕΤΟ, Xen. Hell. ii. 1. 14, al.) are different. On the adjective ὄψιος, see Lobeck, ad Phryn. p. 51. It was already the time of day, which in the classical writers is called ὀψία δειλη (Herod. viii. 6; Thuc. viii. 26; Polyb. vii. 16. 4; Ruhnken, Tim. p. 75). According to Matthew and Luke, it was immediately after His entry, and not on the next day (Mark, Mark 11:12; Mark 11:15 ff.) that Jesus purified the temple. A real difference; Matthew has not only narrated the cleansing of the temple as occurring at once along with the entry, but assumed it so (in opposition to Ebrard, Lange, and many others); Mark, however, is original; the day’s work is completed with the Messianic entry itself, and only a visit to the temple and the significant look round about it forms the close. What the Messiah has still further to do, follows on the morrow. This at the same time in opposition to Baur (Markusevang. p. 89), who sees in the narrative of Mark only the later work of sober reflection adjusting the course of events; and in opposition to Hilgenfeld, who accuses Mark of an essential impropriety.

περιβλεψάμ. πάντα is a preparatory significant statement in view of the measure of cleansing purposed on the morrow. The look around was itself deeply serious, sorrowful, judicial (comp. Mark 3:5; Mark 3:34), not as though He Himself had now for the first time beheld the temple and thus had never previously come to the feast (Schenkel).

[141] By no means obvious of itself, moreover, in the case of the ass’s colt in the narrative of Matthew, since it was already large enough for riding,—in opposition to Lange and others.Ch. Mark 11:1-11. The Triumphal Entry

1. And when] The order of events at this point needs explanation. (1) The Saviour apparently reached Bethany on the evening of Friday, Nisan 8. There (2) in quiet retirement He spent His last earthly Sabbath; and (3) in the evening, sat down to a festal meal provided by the sisters of Lazarus at the house of one Simon, who had been a leper (Matthew 26:6; John 12:1). (4) At this feast He was anointed by Mary (John 12:3); and (5) during the night a council of the Jews was convened to consider the propriety of putting not Him only but Lazarus also to death (John 12:10).

they came] Rather, when they draw near. The Evangelist, passing over for the present the peaceful scene at the festal meal (Mark 14:3-11), translates us at once to Palm Sunday, as to time; and, as to place, to the region between Bethany and the mount of Olives. Observe how he writes in the present tense.

unto Bethphage] On the first day of the Holy Week the Saviour left Bethany and proceeded towards Bethphage = the house of unripe figs, a little hamlet on the road between Jericho and Jerusalem. As in a journey towards Jerusalem it is always mentioned before Bethany, it seems to have been to the east of that village.

he sendeth] Note again the present tense.

two of his disciples] The minuteness of the description that follows suggests that St Peter may have been one of these. If so, he was not improbably accompanied by St John.Mark 11:1. Εἰς Βηθφαγὴ καὶ Βηθανίαν, unto Bethphage and Bethany) See App. Crit. Ed. ii. on this passage.[23] Bethany was already, by the time that the Lord commenced these things [His directions as to preparing for His triumphal entry], in His rear: Bethphage was before His eyes; therefore the latter is placed first, not according to the geographical order, but as being of superior consideration; and at Jerusalem, as it appears, they were wont thus to name the two places, which were most closely joined, Bethphage and Bethany.

[23] Lachm. reads καὶ εἰς Βηθανίαν, omitting Βηθφαγὴ, with D abc Vulg., Origen 3,743a expressly (ἴδωμεν δὲ περὶ τῆς Βηθφαγὴ μὲν κατὰ Ματθαῖον, Βηθανίας δὲ κατὰ τὸν Μάρκον, Βηθφαγὴ δὲ καὶ Βηθανίας κατὰ τὸν Λουκᾶν), making it likely the Βηθφαγὴ was interpolated in Mark from Luke by Harmonists of the Ev. But Tisch. reads Βηθφαγὴ, on the weighty authority of AB Orig. 4,181d.—ED. and TRANSL. In the Vers. Germ. Beng. altogether omits Bethphage, in accordance with his Appar. on this passage.—E. B.Verse 1. - And when they drew nigh unto Jerusalem, unto Bethphage and Bethany, at the mount of Olives. St. Matthew (Matthew 21:1) says, "When they drew nigh unto Jerusalem, and came unto Bethphage." St. Mark mentions the three places together, because Bethphage and Bethany, being near together, were also both of them close to Jerusalem. The distance from Jericho to Jerusalem (about seventeen miles) would involve a journey of about seven hours. The country between Jerusalem and Jericho is hilly, rugged, and desolate. It is from the height overhanging Bethany that the finest view of Jerusalem is gained. It appears from St. John (John 12:1) that our Lord on the preceding sabbath had supped, and probably passed the night, at Bethany; and that on the following day (answering to our Palm Sunday) he had come still nearer to Jerusalem, namely, to Bethphage; and from thence he sent two of his disciples for the ass and the colt. So his way to Jerusalem was from Bethany by Bethphage, the Mount of Olives, and the Valley of Jehoshaphat. The Valley of Jehoshaphat, through which flows the brook Kedron, lies close to Jerusalem. Bethphage literally means "the house of green figs," as Bethany, lying a short distance west of it, means "the house of dates." The date palm growing in the neighbeurhood would furnish the branches with which the multitude strewed the way on the occasion of our Lord's triumphal entry. He sendeth two of his disciples. Who were they? Bede thinks that they were Peter and Philip. Jansonius, with greater probability, thinks that they were Peter and John, because a little after this Christ sent these two to prepare for the Passover. But we know nothing certain on this point.
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