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Mark 8:27-30

Peter’s Confession

8:27 Then Jesus and his disciples went to the villages of Caesarea Philippi. 1  On the way he asked his disciples, 2  “Who do people say that I am?” 8:28 They said, 3  “John the Baptist, others say Elijah, 4  and still others, one of the prophets.” 8:29 He asked them, “But who do you say that I am?” Peter answered him, 5  “You are the Christ.” 6  8:30 Then 7  he warned them not to tell anyone about him. 8 

1 map Fpr location see Map1 C1; Map2 F4.

2 tn Grk “he asked his disciples, saying to them.” The phrase λέγων αὐτοῖς (legwn autois) is redundant in contemporary English and has not been translated.

3 tn Grk “And they said to him, saying.” The participle λέγοντες (legontes) is redundant in contemporary English and has not been translated.

4 sn The appearance of Elijah would mean that the end time had come. According to 2 Kgs 2:11, Elijah was still alive. In Mal 4:5 it is said that Elijah would be the precursor of Messiah.

5 tn Grk “Answering, Peter said to him.” This is redundant in contemporary English and has been simplified to “Peter answered him.”

6 tn Or “the Messiah”; both “Christ” (Greek) and “Messiah” (Hebrew and Aramaic) mean “one who has been anointed.”

sn The term χριστός (cristos) was originally an adjective (“anointed”), developing in LXX into a substantive (“an anointed one”), then developing still further into a technical generic term (“the anointed one”). In the intertestamental period it developed further into a technical term referring to the hoped-for anointed one, that is, a specific individual. In the NT the development starts there (technical-specific), is so used in the gospels, and then develops in Paul to mean virtually Jesus’ last name.

7 tn Here καί (kai) has been translated as “Then” to indicate the conclusion of the episode.

8 sn Mark 8:27-10:52. The entire section 8:27-10:52 is built around three passion predictions of Jesus (8:31; 9:31; 10:33). These predictions form the structure of the section, the content for the section (Jesus’ suffering, death, and the meaning of genuine discipleship) and the mood of the section (i.e., a somber mood). What is interesting is that after each passion prediction, Mark records both the misunderstanding of the disciples and then Jesus’ teaching on the nature of his death and what genuine discipleship is all about: (1) denying oneself (8:34-38); (2) humility and serving (9:33-37); (3) suffering, humble service, and not lording it over people (10:35-45). For further discussion of the structure of the passage, see W. L. Lane, Mark (NICNT), 292-94.

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