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Mark 5:1-5

Context
Healing of a Demoniac

5:1 So 1  they came to the other side of the lake, to the region of the Gerasenes. 2  5:2 Just as Jesus 3  was getting out of the boat, a man with an unclean spirit 4  came from the tombs and met him. 5  5:3 He lived among the tombs, and no one could bind him anymore, not even with a chain. 5:4 For his hands and feet had often been bound with chains and shackles, 6  but 7  he had torn the chains apart and broken the shackles in pieces. No one was strong enough to subdue him. 5:5 Each night and every day among the tombs and in the mountains, he would cry out and cut himself with stones.

1 tn Grk “And.” Here καί (kai) has been translated as “so” to indicate a summary and transition in the narrative.

2 tc The textual tradition here is quite complicated. Most later mss (A C Ë13 Ï syp,h) read “Gadarenes,” which is the better reading in Matt 8:28. Other mss (א2 L Δ Θ Ë1 28 33 565 579 700 892 1241 1424 al sys bo) have “Gergesenes.” Others (א* B D latt sa) have “Gerasenes,” which is the reading followed in the translation here and in Luke 8:26. The difference between Matthew and Mark (which is parallel to Luke) may well have to do with uses of variant regional terms.

sn The region of the Gerasenes would be in Gentile territory on the (south)eastern side of the Sea of Galilee across from Galilee. Matthew 8:28 records this miracle as occurring “in the region of the Gadarenes.” “Irrespective of how one settles this issue, for the [second and] Third Evangelist the chief concern is that Jesus has crossed over into Gentile territory, ‘opposite Galilee’” (J. B. Green, Luke [NICNT], 337). The region of Gadara extended to the Sea of Galilee and included the town of Sennabris on the southern shore – the town that the herdsmen most likely entered after the drowning of the pigs.

3 tn Grk “he”; the referent (Jesus) has been specified in the translation for clarity.

4 sn Unclean spirit refers to an evil spirit.

5 tn Grk “met him from the tombs a man with an unclean spirit.” When this is converted to normal English word order (“a man met him from the tombs with an unclean spirit”) it sounds as if “with an unclean spirit” modifies “the tombs.” Likewise, “a man with an unclean spirit from the tombs met him” implies that the unclean spirit came from the tombs, while the Greek text is clear that it is the man who had the unclean spirit who came from the tombs. To make this clear a second verb, “came,” is supplied in English: “came from the tombs and met him.”

6 tn Grk “he had often been bound with chains and shackles.” “Shackles” could also be translated “fetters”; they were chains for the feet.

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



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