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Word Pictures in the New Testament
(Mark: Chapter 14)

14:1 {After two days} (\meta duo hēmeras\). This was Tuesday
evening as we count time (beginning of the Jewish Wednesday). In
Mt 26:2 Jesus is reported as naming this same date which would
put it our Thursday evening, beginning of the Jewish Friday. The
Gospel of John mentions five items that superficially considered
seem to contradict this definite date in Mark and Matthew, but
which are really in harmony with them. See discussion on Mt
26:17 and my {Harmony of the Gospels}, pp. 279 to 284. Mark
calls it here the feast of "the passover and the unleavened
bread," both names covering the eight days. Sometimes "passover"
is applied to only the first day, sometimes to the whole period.
No sharp distinction in usage was observed. {Sought} (\ezētoun\).
Imperfect tense. They were still at it, though prevented so far.

14:2 {Not during the feast} (\Mē en tēi heortēi\). They had first
planned to kill him at the feast (Joh 11:57), but the Triumphal
Entry and great Tuesday debate (this very morning) in the temple
had made them decide to wait till after the feast was over. It
was plain that Jesus had too large and powerful a following. See
on ¯Mt 26:47.

14:3 {As he sat at meat} (\katakeimenou autou\). Mt 26:7 uses
\anakeimenou\, both words meaning reclining (leaning down or up
or back)
and in the genitive absolute. See on ¯Mt 26:6 in proof
that this is a different incident from that recorded in Lu
7:36-50. See on ¯Mt 26:6-13 for discussion of details.
{Spikenard} (\nardou pistikēs\). This use of \pistikos\ with
\nardos\ occurs only here and in Joh 12:3. The adjective is
common enough in the older Greek and appears in the papyri also
in the sense of genuine, unadulterated, and that is probably the
idea here. The word spikenard is from the Vulgate _nardi
spicati_, probably from the Old Latin _nardi pistici_. {Brake}
(\suntripsousa\). Only in Mark. She probably broke the narrow
neck of the vase holding the ointment.

14:5 {Above three hundred pence} (\epanō dēnariōn triakosiōn\).
Matthew has "for much" while Joh 12:5 has "for three hundred
pence." The use of "far above" may be a detail from Peter's
memory of Judas' objection whose name in this connection is
preserved in Joh 12:4. {And they murmured against her} (\kai
enebrimōnto autēi\)
. Imperfect tense of this striking word used
of the snorting of horses and seen already in Mr 1:43; 11:38.
It occurs in the LXX in the sense of anger as here (Da 11:30).
Judas made the complaint against Mary of Bethany, but all the
apostles joined in the chorus of criticism of the wasteful

14:8 {She hath done what she could} (\ho eschen epoiēsen\). This
alone in Mark. Two aorists. Literally, "what she had she did."
Mary could not comprehend the Lord's death, but she at least
showed her sympathy with him and some understanding of the coming
tragedy, a thing that not one of her critics had done. {She hath
anointed my body aforehand for the burying}
(\proelaben murisai
to sōma mou eis ton entaphiasmon\)
. Literally, "she took
beforehand to anoint my body for the burial." She anticipated the
event. This is Christ's justification of her noble deed. Mt
26:12 also speaks of the burial preparation by Mary, using the
verb \entaphiasai\.

14:9 {For a memorial of her} (\eis mnēmosunon autēs\). So in Mt
26:13. There are many mausoleums that crumble to decay. But this
monument to Jesus fills the whole world still with its fragrance.
What a hint there is here for those who wish to leave permanent

14:10 {He that was one of the twelve} (\ho heis tōn dōdeka\).
Note the article here, "the one of the twelve," Matthew has only
\heis\, "one." Some have held that Mark here calls Judas the
primate among the twelve. Rather he means to call attention to
the idea that he was the one of the twelve who did this deed.

14:11 {And they, when they heard it, were glad} (\hoi de
akousantes echarēsan\)
. No doubt the rabbis looked on the
treachery of Judas as a veritable dispensation of Providence
amply justifying their plots against Jesus. {Conveniently}
(\eukairōs\). This was the whole point of the offer of Judas. He
claimed that he knew enough of the habits of Jesus to enable them
to catch him "in the absence of the multitude" (Lu 22:6)
without waiting for the passover to be over, when the crowds
would leave. For discussion of the motives of Judas, see on ¯Mt
26:15. Mark merely notes the promise of "money" while Matthew
mentions "thirty pieces of silver" (Zec 11:12), the price of a

14:12 {When they sacrificed the passover} (\hote to pascha
. Imperfect indicative, customary practice. The paschal
lamb (note \pascha\) was slain at 6 P.M., beginning of the
fifteenth of the month (Ex 12:6), but the preparations were
made beforehand on the fourteenth (Thursday). See on ¯Mt 26:17
for discussion of "eat the passover."

14:13 {Two of his disciples} (\duo tōn mathētōn autou\). Lu
22:8 names them, Peter and John. {Bearing a pitcher of water}
(\keramion hudatos bastazōn\). This item also in Luke, but not in

14:14 {The goodman of the house} (\tōi oikodespotēi\). A
non-classical word, but in late papyri. It means master
(\despot\) of the house, householder. The usual Greek has two
separate words, \oikou despotēs\ (master of the house). {My
(\to kataluma mou\). In LXX, papyri, and modern
Greek for lodging-place (inn, as in Lu 2:7 or guest-chamber as
. It was used for \khan\ or \caravanserai\. {I shall eat}
(\phagō\). Futuristic aorist subjunctive with \hopou\.

14:15 {And he} (\kai autos\). Emphatic, and he himself. {A large
upper room}
(\anagaion mega\). Anything above ground (\gē\), and
particularly upstairs as here. Here and in Lu 22:12. Example in
Xenophon. Jesus wishes to observe this last feast with his
disciples alone, not with others as was often done. Evidently
this friend of Jesus was a man who would understand. {Furnished}
(\estrōmenon\). Perfect passive participle of \strōnnumi\, state
of readiness. "Strewed with carpets, and with couches properly
spread" (Vincent).

14:17 {He cometh} (\erchetai\). Dramatic historical present. It
is assumed here that Jesus is observing the passover meal at the
regular time and hour, at 6 P.M. at the beginning of the
fifteenth (evening of our Thursday, beginning of Jewish Friday).
Mark and Matthew note the time as evening and state it as the
regular passover meal.

14:18 {As they sat} (\anakeimenōn autōn\). Reclined, of course.
It is a pity that these verbs are not translated properly in
English. Even Leonardo da Vinci in his immortal painting of the
Last Supper has Jesus and his apostles sitting, not reclining.
Probably he took an artist's license for effect. {Even he that
eateth with me}
(\ho esthiōn met' emou\). See Ps 4:9. To this
day the Arabs will not violate hospitality by mistreating one who
breaks bread with them in the tent.

14:20 {One of the twelve} (\heis tōn dōdeka\). It is as bad as
that. The sign that Jesus gave, {the one dipping in the dish with
(\ho embaptomenos met' emou eis to trublion\), escaped the
notice of all. Jesus gave the sop to Judas who understood
perfectly that Jesus knew his purpose. See on ¯Mt 26:21-24 for
further details.

14:23 {A cup} (\potērion\). Probably the ordinary wine of the
country mixed with two-thirds water, though the word for wine
(\oinos\) is not used here in the Gospels, but "the fruit of the
vine" (\ek tou genēmatos tēs ampelou\). See Mt 26:26-29 for
discussion of important details. Mark and Matthew give
substantially the same account of the institution of the Supper
by Jesus, while Lu 22:17-20 agrees closely with 1Co 11:23-26
where Paul claims to have obtained his account by direct
revelation from the Lord Jesus.

14:26 {Sung a hymn} (\humnēsantes\). See Mt 26:30 for

14:29 {Yet will not I} (\all' ouk egō\). Mark records here
Peter's boast of loyalty even though all desert him. All the
Gospels tell it. See discussion on ¯Mt 26:33.

14:30 {Twice} (\dis\). This detail only in Mark. One crowing is
always the signal for more. The Fayum papyrus agrees with Mark in
having \dis\. The cock-crowing marks the third watch of the night
(Mr 13:35).

14:31 {Exceeding vehemently} (\ekperissōs\). This strong
compounded adverb only in Mark and probably preserves Peter's own
statement of the remark. About the boast of Peter see on ¯Mt

14:32 {Which was named} (\hou to onoma\). Literally, "whose name
was." On Gethsemane see on ¯Mt 26:36. {While I pray} (\heōs
. Aorist subjunctive with \heōs\ really with purpose
involved, a common idiom. Matthew adds "go yonder" (\apelthōn

14:33 {Greatly amazed and sore troubled} (\ekthambeisthai kai
. Mt 26:37 has "sorrowful and sore troubled." See on
Matt. about \adēmonein\. Mark alone uses \exthambeisthai\ (here
and in 9:15)
. There is a papyrus example given by Moulton and
Milligan's _Vocabulary_. The verb \thambeō\ occurs in Mr 10:32
for the amazement of the disciples at the look of Jesus as he
went toward Jerusalem. Now Jesus himself feels amazement as he
directly faces the struggle in the Garden of Gethsemane. He wins
the victory over himself in Gethsemane and then he can endure the
loss, despising the shame. For the moment he is rather amazed and
homesick for heaven. "Long as He had foreseen the Passion, when
it came clearly into view its terror exceeded His anticipations"
(Swete). "He learned from what he suffered," (Heb 5:8) and this
new experience enriched the human soul of Jesus.

14:35 {Fell on the ground} (\epipten epi tēs gēs\). Descriptive
imperfect. See him falling. Matthew has the aorist \epesen\.
{Prayed} (\prosēucheto\). Imperfect, prayed repeatedly or
inchoative, began to pray. Either makes good sense. {The hour}
(\hē hōra\). Jesus had long looked forward to this "hour" and had
often mentioned it (Joh 7:30; 8:20; 12:23,27; 13:1). See again
in Mr 14:41. Now he dreads it, surely a human trait that all
can understand.

14:36 {Abba, Father} (\Abba ho patēr\). Both Aramaic and Greek
and the article with each. This is not a case of translation, but
the use of both terms as is Ga 4:6, a probable memory of Paul's
childhood prayers. About "the cup" see on ¯Mt 26:39. It is not
possible to take the language of Jesus as fear that he might die
before he came to the Cross. He was heard (Heb 5:7f.) and
helped to submit to the Father's will as he does instantly. {Not
what I will}
(\ou ti egō thelō\). Matthew has "as" (\hōs\). We
see the humanity of Jesus in its fulness both in the Temptations
and in Gethsemane, but without sin each time. And this was the
severest of all the temptations, to draw back from the Cross. The
victory over self brought surrender to the Father's will.

14:37 {Simon, sleepest thou?} (\Simōn, katheudeis;\). The old
name, not the new name, Peter. Already his boasted loyalty was
failing in the hour of crisis. Jesus fully knows the weakness of
human flesh (see on ¯Mt 26:41).

14:40 {Very heavy} (\katabarunomenoi\). Perfective use of \kata-\
with the participle. Matthew has the simple verb. Mark's word is
only here in the N.T. and is rare in Greek writers. Mark has the
vivid present passive participle, while Matthew has the perfect
passive \bebarēmenoi\. {And they wist not what to answer him}
(\kai ouk ēideisan ti apokrithōsin autōi\). Deliberative
subjunctive retained in the indirect question. Alone in Mark and
reminds one of the like embarrassment of these same three
disciples on the Mount of Transfiguration (Mr 9:6). On both
occasions weakness of the flesh prevented their real sympathy
with Jesus in his highest and deepest experiences. "Both their
shame and their drowsiness would make them dumb" (Gould).

14:41 {It is enough} (\apechei\). Alone in Mark. This impersonal
use is rare and has puzzled expositors no little. The papyri
(Deissmann's _Light from the Ancient East_ and Moulton and
Milligan's _Vocabulary_)
furnish many examples of it as a receipt
for payment in full. See also Mt 6:2ff.; Lu 6:24; Php 4:18 for
the notion of paying in full. It is used here by Jesus in an
ironical sense, probably meaning that there was no need of
further reproof of the disciples for their failure to watch with
him. "This is no time for a lengthened exposure of the faults of
friends; the enemy is at the gate" (Swete). See further on ¯Mt
26:45 for the approach of Judas.

14:43 {And the scribes} (\kai tōn grammateōn\). Mark adds this
item while Joh 18:3 mentions "Pharisees." It was evidently a
committee of the Sanhedrin for Judas had made his bargain with
the Sanhedrin (Mr 14:1; Mt 26:3; Lu 22:2). See discussion of
the betrayal and arrest on ¯Mt 26:47-56 for details.

14:44 {Token} (\sussēmon\). A common word in the ancient Greek
for a concerted signal according to agreement. It is here only in
the New Testament. Mt 26:48 has \sēmeion\, sign. The signal was
the kiss by Judas, a contemptible desecration of a friendly
salutation. {And lead him away safely} (\kai apagete asphalōs\).
Only in Mark. Judas wished no slip to occur. Mark and Matthew do
not tell of the falling back upon the ground when Jesus
challenged the crowd with Judas. It is given by John alone (Joh

14:47 {A certain one} (\heis tis\). Mark does not tell that it
was Peter. Only Joh 18:10 does that after Peter's death. He
really tried to kill the man, Malchus by name, as John again
tells (Joh 18:10). Mark does not give the rebuke to Peter by
Jesus in Mt 26:52ff.

14:48 {Against a robber} (\epi lēistēn\). Highway robbers like
Barabbas were common and were often regarded as heroes. Jesus
will be crucified between two robbers in the very place that
Barabbas would have occupied.

14:51 {A certain young man} (\neaniskos tis\). This incident
alone in Mark. It is usually supposed that Mark himself, son of
Mary (Ac 12:12) in whose house they probably had observed the
passover meal, had followed Jesus and the apostles to the Garden.
It is a lifelike touch quite in keeping with such a situation.
Here after the arrest he was following with Jesus (\sunēkolouthei
autōi\, imperfect tense)
. Note the vivid dramatic present
\kratousin\ (they seize him).

14:52 {Linen cloth} (\sindona\). An old Greek word of unknown
origin. It was fine linen cloth used often for wrapping the dead
(Mt 27:59; Mr 15:46; Lu 23:53). In this instance it could have
been a fine sheet or even a shirt.

14:54 {Peter had followed him afar off} (\Ho Petros apo makrothen
ēkolouthēsen autōi\)
. Here Mark uses the constative aorist
(\ēkolouthēsen\) where Mt 26:58, and Lu 22:54 have the
picturesque imperfect (\ēkolouthei\), was following. Possibly
Mark did not care to dwell on the picture of Peter furtively
following at a distance, not bold enough to take an open stand
with Christ as the Beloved Disciple did, and yet unable to remain
away with the other disciples. {Was sitting with} (\ēn
. Periphrastic imperfect middle, picturing Peter
making himself at home with the officers (\hupēretōn\), under
rowers, literally, then servants of any kind. Joh 18:25
describes Peter as standing (\hestōs\). Probably he did now one,
now the other, in his restless weary mood. {Warming himself in
the light}
(\thermainomenos prōs to phōs\). Direct middle. Fire
has light as well as heat and it shone in Peter's face. He was
not hidden as much as he supposed he was.

14:56 {Their witness agreed not together} (\isai hai marturiai
ouk ēsan\)
. Literally, the testimonies were not equal. They did
not correspond with each other on essential points. {Many were
bearing false witness}
(\epseudomarturoun\, imperfect, repeated
{against him}. No two witnesses bore joint testimony to
justify a capital sentence according to the law (De 19:15).
Note imperfects in these verses (55-57) to indicate repeated

14:57 {Bare false witness} (\epseudomarturoun\). In desperation
some attempted once more (conative imperfect).

14:58 {Made with hands} (\cheiropoiēton\). In Mark alone. An old
Greek word. The negative form \acheiropoiēton\ here occurs
elsewhere only in 2Co 5:1; Col 2:11. In Heb 9:11 the negative
\ou\ is used with the positive form. It is possible that a real
\logion\ of Jesus underlies the perversion of it here. Mark and
Matthew do not quote the witnesses precisely alike. Perhaps they
quoted Jesus differently and therein is shown part of the
disagreement, for Mark adds verse 59 (not in Matthew). "And not
even so did their witness agree together," repeating the point of
verse 57. Swete observes that Jesus, as a matter of fact, did
do what he is quoted as saying in Mark: "He said what the event
has proved to be true; His death destroyed the old order, and His
resurrection created the new." But these witnesses did not mean
that by what they said. The only saying of Jesus at all like this
preserved to us is that in Joh 2:19, when he referred not to
the temple in Jerusalem, but to the temple of his body, though no
one understood it at the time.

14:60 {Stood up in the midst} (\anastas eis meson\). Second
aorist active participle. For greater solemnity he arose to make
up by bluster the lack of evidence. The high priest stepped out
into the midst as if to attack Jesus by vehement questions. See
on ¯Mt 26:59-68 for details here.

14:61 {And answered nothing} (\kai ouk apekrinato ouden\). Mark
adds the negative statement to the positive "kept silent"
(\esiōpā\), imperfect, also in Matthew. Mark does not give the
solemn oath in Matthew under which Jesus had to answer. See on

14:62 {I am} (\ego eimi\). Matthew has it, "Thou hast said,"
which is the equivalent of the affirmative. But Mark's statement
is definite beyond controversy. See on ¯Mt 26:64-68 for the
claims of Jesus and the conduct of Caiaphas.

14:64 {They all} (\hoi de pantes\). This would mean that Joseph
of Arimathea was not present since he did not consent to the
death of Jesus (Lu 23:51). Nicodemus was apparently absent
also, probably not invited because of previous sympathy with
Jesus (Joh 7:50). But all who were present voted for the death
of Jesus.

14:65 {Cover his face} (\perikaluptein autou to prosōpon\). Put a
veil around his face. Not in Matthew, but in Lu 22:64 where
Revised Version translates \perikalupsantes\ by "blind-folded."
All three Gospels give the jeering demand of the Sanhedrin:
"Prophesy" (\prophēteuson\), meaning, as Matthew and Luke add,
thereby telling who struck him while he was blindfolded. Mark
adds "the officers" (same as in verse 54) of the Sanhedrin,
Roman lictors or sergeants-at-arms who had arrested Jesus in
Gethsemane and who still held Jesus (\hoi sunechontes auton\, Lu
. Mt 26:67 alludes to their treatment of Jesus without
clearly indicating who they were. {With blows of their hands}
(\rapismasin\). The verb \rapizō\ in Mt 26:67 originally meant
to smite with a rod. In late writers it comes to mean to slap the
face with the palm of the hands. The same thing is true of the
substantive \rapisma\ used here. A papyrus of the sixth century
A.D. uses it in the sense of a scar on the face as the result of
a blow. It is in the instrumental case here. "They caught him
with blows," Swete suggests for the unusual \elabon\ in this
sense. "With rods" is, of course, possible as the lictors carried
rods. At any rate it was a gross indignity.

14:66 {Beneath in the court} (\katō en tēi aulēi\). This implies
that Jesus was upstairs when the Sanhedrin met. Mt 22:69 has it
{without in the court} (\exō en tēi aulēi\). Both are true. The
open court was outside of the rooms and also below.

14:67 {Warming himself} (\thermainomenon\). Mark mentions this
fact about Peter twice (14:54,67) as does John (Joh
. He was twice beside the fire. It is quite difficult
to relate clearly the three denials as told in the Four Gospels.
Each time several may have joined in, both maids and men. {The
(\tou Nazarēnou\). In Mt 26:69 it is "the Galilean."
A number were probably speaking, one saying one thing, another

14:68 {I neither know nor understand} (\oute oida oute
. This denial is fuller in Mark, briefest in John.
{What thou sayest} (\su ti legeis\). Can be understood as a
direct question. Note position of {thou} (\su\), proleptical.
{Into the porch} (\eis to proaulion\). Only here in the New
Testament. Plato uses it of a prelude on a flute. It occurs also
in the plural for preparations the day before the wedding. Here
it means the vestibule to the court. Mt 26:71 has \pulōna\, a
common word for gate or front porch. {And the cock crew} (\kai
alektōr ephōnēsen\)
. Omitted by Aleph B L Sinaitic Syriac. It is
genuine in verse 72 where "the second time" (\ek deuterou\)
occurs also. It is possible that because of verse 72 it crept
into verse 68. Mark alone alludes to the cock crowing twice,
originally (Mr 14:30), and twice in verse 72, besides verse
68 which is hardly genuine.

14:69 {To them that stood by} (\tois parestōsin\). This talk
about Peter was overheard by him. "This fellow (\houtos\) is one
of them." So in verse 70 the talk is directly to Peter as in
Mt 26:73, but in Lu 22:59 it is about him. Soon the
bystanders (\hoi parestōtes\) will join in the accusation to
Peter (verse 70; Mt 26:73), with the specially pungent question
in Joh 18:26 which was the climax. See on ¯Mt 26:69-75 for
discussion of similar details.

14:71 {Curse} (\anathematizein\). Our word _anathema_ (\ana,
thema\, an offering, then something devoted or a curse)
. Finally
the two meanings were distinguished by \anathēma\ for offering
and \anathema\ for curse. Deissmann has found examples at Megara
of \anathema\ in the sense of curse. Hence the distinction
observed in the N.T. was already in the _Koinē_. Mt 26:74 has
\katathematizein\, which is a \hapax legomenon\ in the N.T.,
though common in the LXX. This word has the notion of calling
down curses on one's self if the thing is not true.

14:72 {Called to mind} (\anemnēsthē\). First aorist passive
indicative. Mt 26:75 has the uncompounded verb \emnēsthē\ while
Lu 22:61 has another compound \hupemnēsthē\, was reminded.
{When he thought thereon} (\epibalōn\). Second aorist active
participle of \epiballō\. It is used absolutely here, though
there is a reference to \to rhēma\ above, the word of Jesus, and
the idiom involves \ton noun\ so that the meaning is to put the
mind upon something. In Lu 15:12 there is another absolute use
with a different sense. Moulton (_Prolegomena_, p. 131) quotes a
Ptolemaic papyrus Tb P 50 where \epibalōn\ probably means "set
to," put his mind on. {Wept} (\eklaien\). Inchoative imperfect,
began to weep. Mt 26:75 has the ingressive aorist \eklausen\,
burst into tears.

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Word Pictures in the New Testament
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