Wednesday, March 23, 2011

Mark 7:14-23, The Tradition of the Elders Part 2 (The Study of Mark)

     14 And again, after summoning the crowd to himself, he was saying to them, “Everyone listen1 to me and understand. 15 There is nothing outside of a man that goes2 into him that is able3 to defile4 him, but the things that go out5 from a man are what defile a man.”6 17 And when he went into a house away from the crowd, his disciples questioned him about the parable. 18 And he says to them, “Are you also without understanding in this manner? Don’t you understand that all things outside that go into a man are not able to defile him 19 because it doesn’t go into his heart but into the stomach and then goes out to the sewer?” (By saying this, he declared all food clean). 20 And he was saying, “The things that go out from a man, that defiles the man. 21 For from within, evil thoughts go out from the heart of men, these are sexual immorality7, theft, murder, 22 adultery, greed8, evil, deceit9, indecency10, envy11, defaming speech12, pride13, and lacking sense14. 23 All these evil things go out from within and defile the man.”


Mark concludes his account of the Elders' Tradition.  Notice how Jesus publicly renounces what the Pharisees and Scribes believe in.  The text doesn't reveal if the Pharisees and Scribes were still around or not, but they would have certainly heard of how Jesus embarrassed them.  Perhaps the most astonishing thing here is the lack of understanding that Jesus' disciples have.  They just can't seem to catch on even though they are with Jesus most of the time.  Jesus also puts the finishing touches on what really defiles a person.

1 ἀκούσατέ (listen) 

Greek: “hear”.

2 εἰσπορευόμενον (goes) 

Greek: “after going into”.

3 δύναται (is able) 

or “has the power to”.

4 κοινῶσαι (to defile) 

or “to make him unclean”.

5 ἐκπορευόμενά (go out) 

Greek: “going out”.

6 Verse 16 omit. 

The Textus Receptus adds εἰ τις ἔχει ὦτα ἀκούειν ἀκουέτω (If anyone has ears to hear, let him listen). The verse can be found in the King James Version.

7 πορνεῖαι (sexual immorality) 

or “fornication” or “prostitution” or “engaging in prostitution”.

8 πλεονεξίαι (greed) 

or “greediness”. The State of desiring to have more than one’s due.

9 δόλος (deceit) 

Taking advantage through craft and underhanded methods.

10ἀσέλγεια (indecency) 

or “indecent conduct”. The lack of self-constraint which involves one in conduct that violates all bounds of what is socially acceptable.

11ὀφθαλμὸς πονηρός (envy) 

Greek: “the evil eye”. Somewhat of an idiom that describes how one wants what others have.

12βλασφημία (defaming speech) 

or “blasphemy”. Speech that denigrates or defames.

13 ὑπερηφανία (pride) 

A state of undue sense of one’s importance bordering on a lack of respect.

14 ἀφροσύνη (lacking sense) 

or “foolishness”. Lacking good judgement.

The Greek

Μάρκον 7·14 Καὶ προσκαλεσάμενος πάλιν τὸν ὄχλον ἔλεγεν αὐτοῖς· ἀκούσατέ μου πάντες καὶ σύνετε. 15 οὐδέν ἐστιν ἔξωθεν τοῦ ἀνθρώπου εἰσπορευόμενον εἰς αὐτὸν ὃ δύναται κοινῶσαι αὐτόν, ἀλλὰ τὰ ἐκ τοῦ ἀνθρώπου ἐκπορευόμενά ἐστιν τὰ κοινοῦντα τὸν ἄνθρωπον.
Μάρκον 7·17 Καὶ ὅτε εἰσῆλθεν εἰς οἶκον ἀπὸ τοῦ ὄχλου, ἐπηρώτων αὐτὸν οἱ μαθηταὶ αὐτοῦ τὴν παραβολήν. 18 καὶ λέγει αὐτοῖς· οὕτως καὶ ὑμεῖς ἀσύνετοί ἐστε; οὐ νοεῖτε ὅτι πᾶν τὸ ἔξωθεν εἰσπορευόμενον εἰς τὸν ἄνθρωπον οὐ δύναται αὐτὸν κοινῶσαι 19 ὅτι οὐκ εἰσπορεύεται αὐτοῦ εἰς τὴν καρδίαν ἀλλ ̓ εἰς τὴν κοιλίαν, καὶ εἰς τὸν ἀφεδρῶνα ἐκπορεύεται, καθαρίζων πάντα τὰ βρώματα; 20 ἔλεγεν δὲ ὅτι τὸ ἐκ τοῦ ἀνθρώπου ἐκπορευόμενον, ἐκεῖνο κοινοῖ τὸν ἄνθρωπον. 21 ἔσωθεν γὰρ ἐκ τῆς καρδίας τῶν ἀνθρώπων οἱ διαλογισμοὶ οἱ κακοὶ ἐκπορεύονται, πορνεῖαι, κλοπαί, φόνοι, 22 μοιχεῖαι, πλεονεξίαι, πονηρίαι, δόλος, ἀσέλγεια, ὀφθαλμὸς πονηρός, βλασφημία, ὑπερηφανία, ἀφροσύνη· 23 πάντα ταῦτα τὰ πονηρὰ ἔσωθεν ἐκπορεύεται καὶ κοινοῖ τὸν ἄνθρωπον.

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