Mark 2:23
And it came to pass, that he went through the corn fields on the sabbath day; and his disciples began, as they went, to pluck the ears of corn.
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(23-28) And it came to pass.—See Notes on Matthew 12:1-8.

As they went . . .—More literally, they began to make a path (or perhaps, to make their way), plucking the ears of corn.



Mark 2:23 - Mark 2:28
. - Mark 3:1 - Mark 3:5.

These two Sabbath scenes make a climax to the preceding paragraphs, in which Jesus has asserted His right to brush aside Rabbinical ordinances about eating with sinners and about fasting. Here He goes much further, in claiming power over the divine ordinance of the Sabbath. Formalists are moved to more holy horror by free handling of forms than by heterodoxy as to principles. So we can understand how the Pharisees’ suspicions were exacerbated to murderous hate by these two incidents. It is doubtful whether Mark puts them together because they occurred together, or because they bear on the same subject. They deal with the two classes of ‘works’ which later Christian theology has recognised as legitimate exceptions to the law of the Sabbath rest; namely, works of necessity and of mercy.

Whether we adopt the view that the disciples were clearing a path through standing corn, or the simpler one, that they gathered the ears of corn on the edge of a made path as they went, the point of the Pharisees’ objection was that they broke the Sabbath by plucking, which was a kind of reaping. According to Luke, their breach of the Rabbinical exposition of the law was an event more dreadful in the eyes of these narrow pedants; for there was not only reaping, but the analogue of winnowing and grinding, for the grains were rubbed in the disciples’ palms. What daring sin! What impious defiance of law! But of what law? Not that of the Fourth Commandment, which simply forbade ‘labour,’ but that of the doctors’ expositions of the commandment, which expended miraculous ingenuity and hair-splitting on deciding what was labour and what was not. The foundations of that astonishing structure now found in the Talmud were, no doubt, laid before Christ. This expansion of the prohibition, so as to take in such trifles as plucking and rubbing a handful of heads of corn, has many parallels there.

But it is noteworthy that our Lord does not avail Himself of the distinction between God’s commandment and men’s exposition of it. He does not embarrass himself with two controversies at once. At fit times He disputed Rabbinical authority, and branded their casuistry as binding grievous burdens on men; but here He allows their assumption of the equal authority of their commentary and of the text to pass unchallenged, and accepts the statement that His disciples had been doing what was unlawful on the Sabbath, and vindicates their breach of law.

Note that His answer deals first with an example of similar breach of ceremonial law, and then rises to lay down a broad principle which governed that precedent, vindicates the act of the disciples, and draws for all ages a broad line of demarcation between the obligations of ceremonial and of moral law. Clearly, His adducing David’s act in taking the shewbread implies that the disciples’ reason for plucking the ears of corn was not to clear a path but to satisfy hunger. Probably, too, it suggests that He also was hungry, and partook of the simple food.

Note, too, the tinge of irony in that ‘Did ye never read?’ In all your minute study of the letter of the Scripture, did you never take heed to that page? The principle on which the priest at Nob let the hungry fugitives devour the sacred bread, was the subordination of ceremonial law to men’s necessities. It was well to lay the loaves on the table in the Presence, but it was better to take them and feed the fainting servant of God and his followers with them. Out of the very heart of the law which the Pharisees appealed to, in order to spin restricting prohibitions, Jesus drew an example of freedom which ran on all-fours with His disciples’ case. The Pharisees had pored over the Old Testament all their lives, but it would have been long before they had found such a doctrine as this in it.

Jesus goes on to bring out the principle which shaped the instance he gave. He does not state it in its widest form, but confines it to the matter in hand-Sabbath obligations. Ceremonial law in all its parts is established as a means to an end-the highest good of men. Therefore, the end is more important than the means; and, in any case of apparent collision, the means must give way that the end may be secured. External observances are not of permanent, unalterable obligation. They stand on a different footing from primal moral duties, which remain equally imperative whether doing them leads to physical good or evil. David and his men were bound to keep these, whether they starved or not; but they were not bound to leave the shew bread lying in the shrine, and starve.

Man is made for the moral law. It is supreme, and he is under it, whether obedience leads to death or not. But all ceremonial regulations are merely established to help men to reach the true end of their being, and may be suspended or modified by his necessities. The Sabbath comes under the class of such ceremonial regulations, and may therefore be elastic when the pressure of necessity is brought to bear.

But note that our Lord, even while thus defining the limits of the obligation, asserts its universality. ‘The Sabbath was made for man’-not for a nation or an age, but for all time and for the whole race. Those who would sweep away the observance of the weekly day of rest are fond of quoting this text; but they give little heed to its first clause, and do not note that their favourite passage upsets their main contention, and establishes the law of the Sabbath as a possession for the world for ever. It is not a burden, but a privilege, made and meant for man’s highest good.

Christ’s conclusion that He is ‘Lord even of the Sabbath’ is based upon the consideration of the true design of the day. If it is once understood that it is appointed, not as an inflexible duty, like the obligation of truth or purity, but as a means to man’s good, physical and spiritual, then He who has in charge all man’s higher interests, and who is the perfect realisation of the ideal of manhood, has full authority to modify and suspend the ceremonial observance if in His unerring judgment the suspension is desirable.

This is not an abrogation of the Sabbath, but, on the contrary, a confirmation of the universal and merciful appointment. It does not give permission to keep or neglect it, according to whim or for the sake of amusement, but it does draw, strong and clear, the distinction between a positive rite which may be modified, and an unchangeable precept of the moral law which it is better for a man to die than to neglect or transgress.

The second Sabbath scene deals with the same question from another point of view. Works of necessity warranted the supercession of Sabbath law; works of beneficence are no breaches of it. There are circumstances in which it is right to do what is not ‘lawful’ on the Sabbath, for such works as healing the man with a withered hand are always ‘lawful.’

We note the cruel indifference to the sufferer’s woe which so characteristically accompanies a religion which is mainly a matter of outside observances. What cared the Pharisees whether the poor cripple was healed or no? They wanted him cured only that they might have a charge against Jesus. Note, too, the strange condition of mind, which recognised Christ’s miraculous power, and yet considered Him an impious sinner.

Observe our Lord’s purpose to make the miracle most conspicuous. He bids the man stand out in the midst, before all the cold eyes of malicious Pharisees and gaping spectators. A secret espionage was going on in the synagogue. He sees it all, and drags it into full light by setting the man forth and by His sudden, sharp thrust of a question. He takes the first word this time, and puts the stealthy spies on the defensive. His interrogation may possibly be regarded as having a bearing on their conduct, for there was murder in their hearts {Mark 2:6}. There they sat with solemn faces, posing as sticklers for law and religion, and all the while they were seeking grounds for killing Him. Was that Sabbath work? Whether would He, if He cured the shrunken arm, or they, if they gathered accusations with the intention of compassing His death, be the Sabbath-breakers?

It was a sharp, swift cut through their cloak of sanctity; but it has a wider scope than that. The question rests on the principle that good omitted is equivalent to evil committed. If we can save, and do not, the responsibility of loss lies on us. If we can rescue, and let die, our brother’s blood reddens our hands. Good undone is not merely negative. It is positive evil done. If from regard to the Sabbath we refrained from doing some kindly deed alleviating a brother’s sorrow, we should not be inactive, but should have done something by our very not doing, and what we should do would be evil. It is a pregnant saying which has many solemn applications.

No wonder that they ‘held their peace.’ Unless they had been prepared to abandon their position, there was nothing to be said. That silence indicated conviction and obstinate pride and rooted hatred which would not be convinced, conciliated, or softened. Therefore Jesus looked on them with that penetrating, yearning gaze, which left ineffaceable remembrances on the beholders, as the frequent mention of it indicates.

The emotions in Christ’s heart as He looked on the dogged, lowering faces are expressed in a remarkable phrase, which is probably best taken as meaning that grief mingled with His anger. A wondrous glimpse into that tender heart, which in all its tenderness is capable of righteous indignation, and in all its indignation does not set aside its tenderness! Mark that not even the most rigid prohibitions were broken by the process of cure. It was no breach of the fantastic restrictions which had been engrafted on the commandment, that Jesus should bid the man put out his hand. Nobody could find fault with a man for doing that. These two things, a word and a movement of muscles, were all. So He did ‘heal on the Sabbath,’ and yet did nothing that could be laid hold of.

But let us not miss the parable of the restoration of the maimed and shrunken powers of the soul, which the manner of the miracle gives. Whatever we try to do because Jesus bids us, He will give us strength to do, however impossible to our unaided powers it is. In the act of stretching out the hand, ability to stretch it forth is bestowed, power returns to atrophied muscles, stiffened joints are suppled, the blood runs in full measure through the veins. So it is ever. Power to obey attends on the desire and effort to obey.

Mark 2:23. He went through the corn-fields — This passage we had Matthew 12:1-8, where it was largely explained. In the days of Abiathar the high-priest — From the passage in the history referred to, (1 Samuel 21:1-9,) it appears that Abimelech, the father of Abiathar, was then high-priest; Abiathar himself not till some time after. This phrase, therefore, only means, In the time of Abiathar, who was afterward high- priest. The sabbath was made for man — And therefore must give way to man’s necessity. The Son of man is Lord also of the sabbath — Being the supreme Lawgiver, he has power to dispense with his own laws, and with this in particular.

2:23-28 The sabbath is a sacred and Divine institution; a privilege and benefit, not a task and drudgery. God never designed it to be a burden to us, therefore we must not make it so to ourselves. The sabbath was instituted for the good of mankind, as living in society, having many wants and troubles, preparing for a state of happiness or misery. Man was not made for the sabbath, as if his keeping it could be of service to God, nor was he commanded to keep it outward observances to his real hurt. Every observance respecting it, is to be interpreted by the rule of mercy.See Matthew 12:1-8.

The cornfields - The fields sown with wheat or barley. The word "corn," in the Bible, refers only to grain of that kind, and never to "maize" or "Indian corn."

To pluck the ears of corn - They were hungry, Matthew 12:1. They therefore gathered the wheat or barley as they walked and rubbed it in their hands to shell it, and thus to satisfy their appetite. Though our Lord was with them, and though he had all things at his control, yet he suffered them to resort to this method of supplying their wants. When Jesus, thus "with" his disciples, suffered them to be "poor," we may learn that poverty is not disgraceful; that God often suffers it for the good of his people; and that he will take care, in some way, that their wants shall be supplied. It was "lawful" for them thus to supply their needs. Though the property belonged to another, yet the law of Moses allowed the poor to satisfy their desires when hungry. See Deuteronomy 23:25.

Mr 2:23-28. Plucking Corn-ears on the Sabbath Day. ( = Mt 12:1-8; Lu 6:1-5).

See on [1410]Mt 12:1-8.

Ver. 23-28. We had also this history in Matthew 12:1-8, in our notes upon which we considered all those passages relating to it which this evangelist hath, for the explication of which I refer my reader thither. See Poole on "Matthew 12:1", and following verses to Matthew 12:8. It refers to a story, 1 Samuel 21:1, where Ahimelech is said to have been the high priest. Abiathar was his son, as appeareth by 1 Samuel 22:20, who escaped the slaughter of his father’s family upon the information of Doeg the Edomite, and followed David. It was in the latter end of the priesthood of Ahimelech, and probably Abiathar assisted his father in the execution of the office, and so suddenly succeeded, that Mark calls it the time of his priesthood. Besides that those words, epi ’ Abiayar, do not necessarily signify in the days of Abiathar, as we translate it, no more than epi metoicesiav signifies in the carrying into captivity, but about the time, or near the time; which it was, for Ahimelech was presently after it (possibly within a few days) cut off, as we read, 1 Samuel 22:17,18; and Abiathar was a more noted man than his father Ahimelech, enjoying the priesthood more than forty years, and being the person who was made famous by carrying the ephod to David.

And it came to pass,.... The Vulgate Latin adds, "again"; and so Beza says it was read in one of his copies:

that he went through the corn fields on the sabbath day, and his disciples began, as they went, to pluck the ears of corn, and to rub them, and get the grain out of them, and eat them; See Gill on Matthew 12:1.

{4} And it came to pass, that he went through the corn fields on the {h} sabbath day; and his disciples began, as they went, to pluck the ears of corn.

(4) Secondly, because they do not distinguish between the laws which God made concerning things, and the laws that they made concerning the same things, which are not at all based on the law.

(h) Literally, on the Sabbaths, that is, on the holy days.

Mark 2:23-28. See on Matthew 12:1-8. Comp. Luke 6:1-5, who follows Mark in the order of events, which in Matthew is different.

παραπορεύεσθαι] not: to walk on, ambulare (Vulgate, Luther, and many others, including de Wette), so that παρά would refer indefinitely to other objects, but to pass along by. Comp. Matthew 27:39; Mark 11:20; Mark 15:29. Jesus passed through the corn-fields alongside of these, so that the way that passed through the fields led Him on both sides along by them. Just so Mark 9:30, and Deuteronomy 2:4.

ὁδὸν ποιεῖν κ.τ.λ.] is usually explained as though it stood: ὁδὸν ποιούμενοι τίλλειν τοὺς στάχυας, to pluck the ears of corn as they went. Against the mode of expression, according to which the main idea lies in the participial definition (see Hermann, ad Aj. 1113; Electr. 1305; Stallbaum, ad Plat. Gorg. p. 136; Phil. p. 58), there would be in itself nothing, according to classical examples, to object; but in the N. T. this mode of expression does not occur (Winer, p. 316 [E. T. 443 f.]), and here in particular the active ποιεῖν is opposed to it, since ὁδὸν ποιεῖν is always viam sternere, and ὁδὸν ποιεῖσθαι (as also πορείαν ποιεῖσθαι) is iter facere. See Viger. ed. Herm. p. 116; Kypke, I. p. 154; Krebs, p. 81; Winer, p. 228 [E. T. 320]. Comp. also ὁδοποιεῖν (Xen. Anab. v. 1. 14; Dem. 1274, 26, frequently in the LXX.) and ὁδὸν ὁδοποιεῖν; Kühner, ad Xen. Anab. iv. 8. 8. The assumption that Mark had missed this distinction is wholly without exegetical warrant, as is also the recourse to a Latinism (Krebs). The only correct explanation is: they began to make a way (to open a path) by plucking the ears of corn; not, as Bretschneider and Fritzsche alter the meaning of the words: “evellisse spicas et factum esse, ut projectis, quum iis essent demta grana, spicis exprimeretur via.” We must rather conceive of the field-path on which they are walking—perhaps at a place where it leads through a field of corn which it intersects—as overgrown with ears, so that they must of necessity, in order to continue their journey, make a path, which they do by plucking the ears of corn that stand in their way. According to Matthew and Luke, the chief point lies in the fact that the disciples pluck the ears and eat them; and the Pharisees find fault with their doing this—which in itself is allowable—on the Sabbath. According to Mark, however, who has not a word[65] of the disciples eating, their act consists in this, that by the plucking of the ears of corn they open a way through the field; and the Pharisees, Mark 2:24, find fault that they do that, which in itself is already unallowable,[66] on the Sabbath. The justification of Jesus amounts then, Mark 2:25 ff., to the two points: (1) that according to David’s precedent the proceeding of the disciples, as enjoined by necessity, is by no means unallowable; and (2) that the Sabbath makes no difference in the matter.

The origin of this difference itself is easily explained from the fact, that Jesus adduces the history of the eating of the shew-bread, by means of which also the eating of the ears of corn came into the tradition of this incident. Mark betrays by his ὁδὸν ποιεῖν abandoned by Matthew and Luke, and by the less obvious connection of it with the eating of the shew-bread, the original narrative, which perhaps proceeded from Peter himself.

τοὺς στάχυας] the article designates the ears of corn that stood in the way.

Mark 2:24. They do not ask, as in Matthew and Luke, why the disciples do what is unallowable on the Sabbath, but why they do on the Sabbath something (already in itself) unallowable.

Mark 2:25. αὐτός] and He on His part, replying to them. He put a counter-question.

ὅτε χρείαν ἔσχε] In this lies the analogy. The disciples also were by the circumstances compelled to the course which they took. The demonstrative force of this citation depends upon a conclusion a majori ad minus. David in a case of necessity dealt apparently unlawfully even with the shew-bread of the temple, which is yet far less lawful to be touched than the ears of grain in general.

Mark 2:26. ἐπὶ Ἀβιάθαρ τοῦ ἀρχιερ.] tempore Abiatharis pontificis maximi, i.e. under the pontificate of Abiathar. Comp. Luke 3:2; Matthew 1:11. According to 1 Samuel 21:1 ff., indeed, the high priest at that time was not Abiathar, but his father (1 Samuel 22:20; Joseph. Antt. vi. 12. 6) Aḥimelech. Mark has erroneously confounded these two, which might the more easily occur from the remembrance of David’s friendship with Abiathar (1 Samuel 22:20 ff.). See Korb in Winer’s krit. Journ. IV. p. 295 ff.; Paulus, Fritzsche, de Wette, Bleek. The supposition that father and son both had both names (Victor Antiochenus, Euthymius Zigabenus, Theophylact, Beza, Jansen, Heumann, Kuinoel, and many others), is only apparently supported by 2 Samuel 8:17, 1 Chronicles 18:16, comp. 1 Chronicles 24:6; 1 Chronicles 24:31; as even apart from the fact that these passages manifestly contain an erroneous statement (comp. Thenius on 2 Sam. l.c.; Bertheau judges otherwise, d. Bücher der Chron. p. 181 f.), the reference of our quotation applies to no other passage than to 1 Samuel 21. Grotius thought that the son had been the substitute of the father. Recourse has been had with equally ill success to a different interpretation of ἐπί; for, if it is assumed to be coram (Wetstein, Scholz), 1 Sam. l.c. stands historically opposed to it; but if it is held to mean: in the passage concerning Abiathar, i.e. there, where he is spoken of (Mark 12:26; Luke 20:37), it is opposed by the same historical authority, and by the consideration that the words do not stand immediately after ἀνέγνωτε (in opposition to Michaelis and Saunier, Quellen d. Mark. p. 58).

Mark 2:27 f. καὶ ἒλεγ. αὐτοῖς] frequently used for the introduction of a further important utterance of the same subject who is speaking; Bengel: “Sermonem iterum exorsus.” Comp. Mark 4:9. As Jesus has hitherto refuted the reproach conveyed in ὁ οὐκ ἔξεστι, Mark 2:24, He now also refutes the censure expressed by ἐν τοῖς σάββασιν, Mark 2:24. Namely: as the Sabbath has been made (brought into existence, i.e. ordained) for the sake of man, namely, as a means for his highest moral ends (Genesis 2:3; Exodus 20:8 ff.), not man for the sake of the Sabbath,[67] it follows thence: the Messiah has to rule even over the Sabbath, so that thus the disciples, who as my disciples have acted under my permission, cannot be affected by any reproach in respect of the Sabbath. The inference ὥστε depends on the fact that the υἱὸς τοῦ ἀνθρώπου, i.e. the Messiah (not with Grotius and Fritzsche to be taken as man in general), is held ex concesso as the representative head of humanity.[68] On the mode of inference in general, comp. 1 Corinthians 11:9; 2Ma 5:19.

κύριος] emphatically at the beginning: is not dependent, but Lord,[69] etc.; whereby, however, is expressed not the prerogative of absolute abolition (see against this Matthew 5:17 ff., and the idea of the πλήρωσις of the law makes its appearance even in Mark 7:15 ff; Mark 10:5 ff; Mark 12:28 ff.), but the power of putting in the place of the external statutory Sabbath observance—while giving up the latter—something higher in keeping with the idea of the Sabbath, wherein lies the πλήρωσις of the Sabbath-law. Comp. Lechler in the Stud. u. Krit. 1854, p. 811; Weizsäcker, p. 391.

καί] also, along with other portions of His κυριότης.

[65] Mark has been blamed on this account. See Fritzsche, p. 69. But the very evangelist, who knew how to narrate so vividly, should by no means have been charged with such an awkwardness as the omission of the essential feature of the connection—which is just what the latest harmonizing avers. It ought to have been candidly noted that in Mark the object of the plucking of the ears is the ὁδὸν ποιεῖν; while in Matthew it is the eating on account of hunger. The occasions of the necessity, in which the disciples were placed, are different: in the former case, the ὁδοποΐα; in the latter, the hunger.

[66] To this view Holtzmann and Hilgenfeld have acceded, as also Ritschl, altkath. K. p. 29; Schenkel, Charakterbild, p. 86; and as regards the ὁδὸν ποιεῖν in itself, also Lange. The defence of the usual explanation on the part of Krummel in the allgem. K. Zeit. 1864, No. 74, leaves the linguistic difficulty which stands in its way entirely unsolved. He should least of all have sought support from the reading of Lachmann (ὁδοποιεῖν); for this also never means anything else than viam sternere, and even in the middle voice only means to make for oneself a path. Weiss (Jahrb. f. Deutsche Theol. 1865, p. 363) calls my explanation “somewhat odd;” this, however, can matter nothing, if only it is linguistically correct, and the usual one linguistically erroneous.

[67] Comp. Mechilta in Exodus 31:13 : “Vobis sabbatum traditum est, et non vos traditi estis sabbato.” According to Baur, ver. 27 belongs to “the rational explanations,” which Mark is fond of prefixing by way of suggesting a motive for what is historically presented. To the same class he would assign Mark 9:39, Mark 7:15 ff. Weizsäcker finds in the passage before us a later reflection. This would only be admissible, if the idea facilitated the concluding inference, which is not the case, and if Mark were not in this narrative generally so peculiar. The connecting link of the argumentation preserved by him might more easily have been omitted as something foreign, than have been added.

[68] For Him, as such, in the judgment to be formed of the obligatory force of legal ordinances, the regulative standard is just the relation, in which man as a moral end to himself stands to the law. Comp. Ritschl, altkathol. Kirche, p. 29 ff.

[69] With this the freedom of worship is given as well as assigned to its necessary limit, but not generally “proclaimed” (Schenkel).

Mark 2:23-28. The Sabbath question (Matthew 12:1-8, Luke 6:1-5).

23–28. The Disciples pluck the Ears of Corn

23. on the sabbath day] St Luke tells us that this was a “second first Sabbath” i. e. either (1) the first Sabbath after the second day of unleavened bread; or (2) the first Sabbath in the second year of a Sabbatical cycle; or (3) the first Sabbath of the second month (Luke 6:1). See Wieseler’s Chronol. Synop. p. 353 sq.

to pluck the ears of corn] From St Matthew we learn that they were an hungred (Matthew 12:1). The act described marks the season of the year. The wheat was ripe, for they would not have rubbed barley in their hands (Luke 6:1). We may conclude therefore, the time was a week or two after the Passover, when the first ripe sheaf was offered as the firstfruits of the harvest. For the exact date of this Sabbath see Wieseler’s Chronol. Synop. p. 225 sq.

Verse 23. - If there is a rapid sequence in this part of the narrative, the fasting referred to in the last verses may have taken place the day before. St. Luke (Luke 6:1) here adds to St. Mark's account the words, "and did eat, rubbing them [that is, the ears of corn] in their hands;" an incidental evidence of a simple life, that they did not here eat prepared food, but the simple grains of wheat, which they separated from the chaff by rubbing the ears of corn in their hands. This passage marks with some nicety the time of the year. The corn in that district would be ripening about May. It would, therefore, be not long after the Passover. The difficult expression in St. Luke 6:1, ἐν σαββάτῳ δευτεροπρώτῳ, and which is rendered in the Authorized Version "on the second sabbath after the first," is reduced by the Revisers of 1881 to the simple phrase (ἐν σαββάτῳ), "on a sabbath," there not being sufficient evidence to persuade them to retain the word δευτεροπρώτῳ. But other evidences seem to show that the incident occurred earlier than as recorded by St. Matthew. The Fathers are fond of spiritual applications of this rubbing of the ears of corn. Bede, in remarking upon the fact of the disciples plucking the ears of corn, and rubbing them until they get rid of the husks, and obtain the food itself, says that they do this who meditate upon the Holy Scriptures, and digest them, until they find in them the kernel, the quintessence of delight; and St. Augustine blames those who merely please themselves with the flowers of Holy Scripture, but do not rub out the grain by meditation, until they obtain the real nourishment of virtue. Mark 2:23He went (αὐτὸν παραπορεύεσθαι)

Lit., went along beside, along the stretches of standing grain. Matthew and Luke use διά, through, as Mark does, but not παρά.

Began, as they went, to pluck (ἤρξαντο ὁδὸν ποιεῖν τίλλοντες)

Lit., began to make a way plucking the ears. This does not mean that the disciples broke a way for themselves through the standing corn by plucking the ears, for in that event they would have been compelled to break down the stalks. The:), could not have made a way by plucking the heads of the grain. Mark, who uses Latin forms, probably adopted here the phrase iter facere, to make a way, which is simply to go. The same idiom occurs in the Septuagint, Judges 17:8; ποιῆσαι ὁδὸν αὐτοῦ, as he journeyed. The offence given the Pharisees was the preparation, of food on the Sabbath. Matthew says to eat, stating the motive, and Luke, rubbing with their hands, describing the act. See on Matthew 12:2.. The Rev. rightly retains the rendering of the A. V.

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