Mark 9:16:9–20, Many modern scholars call into question the genuineness of these last twelve verses. For a discussion on whether these verses of Mark’s Gospel should be included in the Bible, see E. W. Bullinger’s (1837-1913) The Companion Bible (appendix 168).
Bullinger states that the two oldest Greek manuscripts of the Testimony of Yeshua (from the fourth century) don’t contain these verses. On the other hand, more than six hundred other Greek manuscripts do contain them as do the oldest Syriac manuscript known as the Peshitto (which Bullinger believes is from the second century) and the Curetonian Syriac (from the third century). He notes that Jerome when translating the Bible into Latin (The Vulgate, A.D. 382) had access to Greek manuscripts older than any now extant included these twelve verses in his Bible. Additionally, he notes that the Gothic Version (A.D. 350), the Coptic (fourth or fifth century), the Armenian (fifth century), Ethiopic (fourth to seventh centuries) and Georgian (sixth century) versions all contain these last twelve verses. Bullinger goes on to say that there are nearly one hundred ecclesiastical writers before the oldest extant Greek manuscripts who attest to the authenticity of these verses. Moreover, between A.D. 300 and 600 there are about two hundred more writers who do.
Bullinger gives two reasons why he believes these verses may have been omitted from several of the oldest Greek NT manuscripts. After the destruction of Jerusalem in A.D. 70 extending one hundred years there is a complete blank regarding the history of the early church and a complete silence about this era from Christian writers. Therefore, no one knows what was going on in the church during this period including whether such signs and wonders as enumerated in these last verses in Mark’s Gospel were still occurring. He speculates that when later translators came to the last twelve verses of Mark and saw no trace of these spiritual gifts currently being manifested in the church (in the fourth century), some marked them as doubtful, spurious or even omitted them altogether. This same doubt has been passed on to modern scholars.
Mark 12:15, Bring me a denarius. Yeshua was so disinterested with, unaffected by and uninvolved with money that when he needed some, even for illustration purposes, he wasn’t able just to whip a coin out of his pocket, but he had to find one elsewhere. In this case, he asked someone in the crowd for a coin. When he needed to pay the temple tax, he found a coin in a fish’s mouth (Matt 17:24–27). Yeshua’s approach to money is rare among Christian ministers today.
A Roman denarius — a small silver coin.
Mark 10:17–22, Yeshua’s model for one-on-one evangelism is here revealed. In his encounter with the rich, young ruler, Yeshua reveals a method of evangelizing in a one-on-one scenario. He uses the following five-step approach:
- Yeshua first establishes the character of YHVH Elohim and how man falls short of this in comparison. Namely, YHVH is good, and man is not.
- Next, Yeshua presents the Torah as Elohim’s standard that determines the definition of good.
- Yeshua then shows the young man that he was violated that standard of goodness by breaking the Torah.
- He advises the young man then to repent of his Torahlessness (or of breaking YHVH’s laws, which is the biblical definition of sin in 1 John 3:4).
- Finally, Yeshua invites the young to make the total commitment to being a good person and to follow him.
We see this evangelistic model again in Acts 17:24 when Paul addresses the Greeks on Mars Hill.
Mark 9:49, Seasoned with salt. Salt was used on sacrifices (Lev 2:13 [ref. to the grain offering]; Ezek 43:24 [ref. to the burnt offering]). Salt was used for both preservation and seasoning of foods. Because of its ability to last and to preserve food, salt in ancient times was a symbol of permanence and thus of a binding covenant (Num 18:19; 2 Chr 13:5, see Beale and Carson in Commentary on the NT Use of the OT).
Have salt in yourselves. In the larger context of passage where Yeshua warns against sectarianism and causing offense, it seems as if he is telling us to be salty toward (i.e. purify, season, preserve) ourselves rather than others. In so doing, we’ll be more successful at being at peace with those around us, since we won’t be attempting to straighten them out thereby causing offense. Also, through the process of self-seasoning and self-purification, we’re more likely to be the salt and light to those around us that Yeshua commanded us to be (Matt 5:13–14). Our lives instead of being insipid and a dark will be tasteful and light-emanating, thus attracting others to Yeshua and to his spiritual kingdom. We’ll thus be the living sacrifices we’re commanded to be (Rom 12:1), who are seasoned with the salt of a covenantal relationship with YHVH Elohim as we give our lives in service to others for the glory of Yeshua even as our Lord, the Lamb of Elohim, gave himself as a sacrifice for us.
It is interesting to note the order of events as Yeshua was launching his ministry. He was about to enter a war zone! After John baptized Yeshua and he received his heavenly empowerment, he first went through a spiritual boot camp before stepping onto the battlefield of public ministry. Once in the “war,” it’s worth noting where the battle lines fell.
- Yeshua’s spiritual boot camp was the wilderness where he fasted for forty days and nights to get his body, soul and spirit, and his mind, will and emotions in sync with the will of his Father in heaven (Mark 1:12–15).
- His first battle was an internal one. The devil tested him in three areas: his body, soul and spirit, or, to put it another way, the lust of the flesh, the lust of the eyes and the pride of life (Mark 1:13). After overcoming himself and submitting to the will of his Father, he was now ready to launch into the war zone of public ministry.
- His mission was to preach the message of the gospel of the kingdom of Elohim and repentance from sin (i.e. Torahlessness, 1 John 3:4; Mark 1:14–15).
- Next he chose his cadre of spiritual warriors — his “army”— the twelve disciples (Mark 1:16–20).
- Where better to start proclaiming the gospel message than in the local synagogue on the Sabbath (Mark 1:21)? After all, the religious folks there should be overjoyed to hear this good news, fresh message from heaven. Right?
- His first recorded act, other than preaching, was to cast an unclean spirit out of someone Continue reading →
In the Bible, the rich young ruler had everything and was a good person, but despite all this, he had one idol in his life that kept him out of God’s kingdom. What is the most important thing in your life, the thing you’ve given your heart affection to? This is your god or idol. In this video learn how our idols keep us from coming into a relationship with the Creator of the Universe and from entering into his eternal kingdom.
In this video, Natan discusses how Yeshua teaches that divorce isn’t YHVH intended ideal marital situation, but that due to the hardness of the human heart, Moses (obviously, with Elohim’s permission) allowed for it (under certain stringent conditions, as the Torah spells out).
Lest anyone get the idea that the Bible permits divorce for any reason (as the Pharisaical school of Hillel taught), Yeshua asserts that divorce and remarriage (often) results in an adulterous situation.
Then the Gospel writer seeming switches gears and records Yeshua’s blessing the children and encouraging this disciples to become like little children in order to enter the kingdom of Elohim.
Is Yeshua’s discussion about divorce and his blessing of the children just random and unrelated events in the Gospel narrative, or are these events strangely related employing a typically Hebraic teaching style to teach an important lesson? What this video to find out.