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Mark 1:23-26

Context
1:23 Just then there was a man in their synagogue with an unclean spirit, 1  and he cried out, 2  1:24 “Leave us alone, 3  Jesus the Nazarene! Have you come to destroy us? I know who you are – the Holy One 4  of God!” 1:25 But 5  Jesus rebuked him: 6  “Silence! Come out of him!” 7  1:26 After throwing him into convulsions, the unclean spirit cried out with a loud voice and came out of him.

1 sn Unclean spirit refers to an evil spirit.

2 tn Grk “he cried out, saying.” The participle λέγων (legwn) is redundant in contemporary English and has not been translated.

3 tn Grk What to us and to you?” This is an idiom meaning, “We have nothing to do with one another,” or “Why bother us!” The phrase τί ἡμῖν καὶ σοί (ti Jhmin kai soi) is Semitic in origin, though it made its way into colloquial Greek (BDAG 275 s.v. ἐγώ). The equivalent Hebrew expression in the OT had two basic meanings: (1) When one person was unjustly bothering another, the injured party could say “What to me and to you?” meaning, “What have I done to you that you should do this to me?” (Judg 11:12, 2 Chr 35:21, 1 Kgs 17:18). (2) When someone was asked to get involved in a matter he felt was no business of his own, he could say to the one asking him, “What to me and to you?” meaning, “That is your business, how am I involved?” (2 Kgs 3:13, Hos 14:8). Option (1) implies hostility, while option (2) merely implies disengagement. BDAG suggests the following as glosses for this expression: What have I to do with you? What have we in common? Leave me alone! Never mind! Hostility between Jesus and the demons is certainly to be understood in this context, hence the translation: “Leave me alone….” For a very similar expression see Lk 8:28 and (in a different context) John 2:4.

4 sn The confession of Jesus as the Holy One here is significant, coming from an unclean spirit. Jesus, as the Holy One of God, who bears God’s Spirit and is the expression of holiness, comes to deal with uncleanness and unholiness.

5 tn Grk “And.” Here καί (kai) has been translated as “but” to indicate the contrast present in this context.

6 tn Grk “rebuked him, saying.” The participle λέγων (legwn) is redundant in English and has not been translated.

7 sn The command Come out of him! is an example of Jesus’ authority (see v. 32). Unlike other exorcists, Jesus did not use magical incantations nor did he invoke anyone else’s name.



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