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Mark 15:12

Context
15:12 So Pilate spoke to them again, 1  “Then what do you want me to do 2  with the one you call king of the Jews?”

1 tn Grk “answering, Pilate spoke to them again.” The participle ἀποκριθείς (apokriqeis) is redundant and has not been translated.

2 tc Instead of “what do you want me to do” several witnesses, including the most important ones (א B C W Δ Ψ Ë1,13 33 892 2427 pc), lack θέλετε (qelete, “you want”), turning the question into the more abrupt “what should I do?” Although the witnesses for the longer reading are not as significant (A D Θ 0250 Ï latt sy), the reading without θέλετε conforms to Matt 27:22 and thus is suspected of being a scribal emendation. The known scribal tendency to assimilate one synoptic passage to another parallel, coupled with the lack of such assimilation in mss that are otherwise known to do this most frequently (the Western and Byzantine texts), suggests that θέλετε is authentic. Further, Mark’s known style of being generally more verbose and redundant than Matthew’s argues that θέλετε is authentic here. That this is the longer reading, however, and that a good variety of witnesses omit the word, gives one pause. Perhaps the wording without θέλετε would have been perceived as having greater homiletical value, motivating scribes to move in this direction. A decision is difficult, but on the whole internal evidence leads toward regarding θέλετε as authentic.



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