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Home > Commentaries > Barnes' Notes > Mark > Chapter 13

Barnes' Notes on the New Testament

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MARK Chapter 13.

Verse 1. The principal things in this chapter are fully explained in the twenty-fourth chapter of Matthew.

1. What manner of stones. The stones here referred to were those used in the building of the temple, and the walls on the sides of Mount Moriah on which the temple stood. The temple was constructed of white marble, and the blocks were of a prodigious size. Josephus says that these stones were some of them fifty feet long, twenty-four broad, and sixteen in thickness.

{a} "And as he went out" Matthew 24:1, etc.

Verse 2. No Barnes text on this verse.

{b} "great buildings" Luke 19:44

Verse 3. Upon the mount of Olives over against the temple. The Mount of Olives was directly east of Jerusalem, and from it there was a fine view of the temple.

Verse 4. No Barnes text on this verse.

Verse 5. No Barnes text on this verse.

{c} "Take heed" Jeremiah 29:8; Ephesians 5:6; 2 Thessalonians 2:3; Revelation 20:7,8

Verse 6. No Barnes text on this verse.

{d} "come in my name" Acts 5:36-39; 1 John 4:1

Verse 7. No Barnes text on this verse.

{e} "be ye not troubled" Psalms 27:3; 46:1,2; Proverbs 3:25; John 14:1,27

Verse 8. No Barnes text on this verse.

{1} "beginning of sorrows" "The word in the original importeth"
the pains of a woman in travail.

Verse 9. Take heed to yourselves. Be cautious that no man deceive you; or, take care of your lives, not to run into unnecessary danger.

To councils. The higher ecclesiastical courts of the Jews, including the Sanhedrim, or great council of the nation.

Rulers and kings. Referring to Roman officers.

For a testimony against them. Rather, to bear testimony to them; or to be witnesses before them of the truth. This was for the sake of Jesus, or because they were attached to him; and God would overrule it so that at the same time they should bear witness to the rulers of the truth, as was the case with Peter and John, Acts 4; iv.; with Stephen, Acts 6, Acts 7; and with Paul, Acts 23; Acts 24:24,25.

{f} "they shall deliver" Matthew 10:17; Revelation 2:10

Verse 10. No Barnes text on this verse.

{g} "And the Gospel" Matthew 28:19; Revelation 14:6

Verse 11. Neither do ye premeditate. Do not think beforehand, or prepare an answer. You know not what the accusations will be; and God will furnish you with a reply that shall be adapted to the occasion.

Not ye that speak, but the Holy Ghost. This is a full promise that they should be inspired; and consequently their defences recorded in the Acts of the Apostles are the words of the Holy Ghost. There could be no more explicit promise that they should be under an infallible guidance; and we are not left to doubt that they were taught of God. At the same time, this was a most desirable and gracious aid. They were illiterate, unknown, without power. They were unfit of themselves to make the important statements of religion which were requisite. But God gave them power, and they spake with a wisdom, fearlessness, pungency, and ability, which no other men have ever manifested--full proof that these illiterate fishermen were under the influence of the Holy Ghost.

{h} "Holy Ghost" \\Ac 2:4 4:8,31 6:10\\

Verse 12. The brother shall betray, etc. The brother shall give up in a treacherous manner his brother to be put to death, on account of his attachment to Jesus. Through fear, in the hope of reward and the hatred of the gospel, he will overcome all the natural ties of brotherhood, and give up his own kindred to be burnt or crucified. Perhaps nothing could more clearly show the dreadful evil of those times, as well as the natural opposition of the heart to the religion of Christ.

{i} "brother" Micah 7:6

Verse 13. No Barnes text on this verse.

{k} "hated" Luke 6:22; John 17:14
{l} "but he that shall endure" Daniel 12:12; Revelation 2:10

Verse 14. No Barnes text on this verse.

{m} "of by Daniel" Daniel 9:27

Verse 15. On the housetop. See Matthew 9:1-8.

Verse 16. No Barnes text on this verse.

Verse 17. No Barnes text on this verse.

Verse 18. No Barnes text on this verse.

Verse 19. No Barnes text on this verse.

{n} "For in those days" Daniel 12:1; Joel 2:2

Verse 20. No Barnes text on this verse.

Verse 21. No Barnes text on this verse.

{o} "Lo, here is" Luke 17:23

Verse 22. No Barnes text on this verse.

Verse 23. No Barnes text on this verse.

{p} "take ye heed" 2 Peter 3:17

Verse 24. No Barnes text on this verse.

{q} "tribulation" Daniel 12:1; Zephaniah 1:15-17

Verse 25. No Barnes text on this verse.

{r} "the stars of heaven" Isaiah 13:10; 24:20,23; Jeremiah 4:28; 2 Peter 3:10,12
Revelation 6:12-14; 20:11

Verse 26. No Barnes text on this verse.

{s} "and then" Daniel 7:9-14; Matthew 16:27; 24:30; Mark 14:62; Acts 1:11; 1 Thessalonians 4:16
2 Thessalonians 1:7,10; Revelation 1:7

Verse 27. No Barnes text on this verse.

Verse 28. No Barnes text on this verse.

Verse 29. No Barnes text on this verse.

Verse 30. No Barnes text on this verse.

Verse 31. No Barnes text on this verse.

{t} "but my words" Isaiah 40:8

Verse 32. Neither the Son. This text has always presented serious difficulties. It has been asked, If Jesus had a Divine nature, how could he say he knew not the day and hour of a future event? In reply, it has been said that the passage was wanting, according to Ambrose, in some Greek manuscripts. But it is now found in all, and there can be little doubt that the passage is genuine. Others have said that the verb rendered "knoweth," means sometimes to make known, or to reveal; and that the passage means, "That day and hour none makes known, neither the angels, nor the Son, but the Father." It is true, the word has sometimes that meaning, as in 1 Corinthians 2:2; but then it is natural to ask where has the Father made it known? In what place did he reveal it? After all, the passage has no more difficulty than that in Luke 2:52, where it is said that Jesus increased in wisdom and stature. He had a human nature. He grew as a man in knowledge. As a man, his knowledge must be finite, for the faculties of the human soul are not infinite. As a man, he often spoke, reasoned, inquired, felt, feared, read, learned, ate, drank, and walked. Why are not all these, which imply that he was a man--that, as a man, he was not infinite --why are not these as difficult as the want of knowledge respecting the particular time of a future event; especially when that time must be made known by God, and when he chose that the man, Christ Jesus, should grow and think, and speak as a man?

Verse 33. No Barnes text on this verse.

{u} "Take ye heed" Matthew 24:42; 25:13; Luke 12:40; 21:34; Romans 13:11,12
1 Thessalonians 5:6; Revelation 16:15

Verse 34. Who left his house. The word house often means family. Our Saviour here represents himself as going away, leaving his household the Church, assigning to the apostles and all his servants their duty, and leaving it uncertain when he would return. As his return was a matter of vast consequence--and as the affairs of his kingdom were entrusted to them, just as the affairs of a house are to servants, when the master is absent---so it was of Vast importance that they should be faithful at their post, defend the house from danger, and be ready for his return.

The porter. The door-keeper. To the janitor or door-keeper was entrusted, particularly, the faithful care of the house, whose duty it was to attend faithfully on those who came, and those who left the house.

Verse 35. Watch ye. Be diligent, faithful, and waiting for the return of your Lord, who will come at an unexpected hour.

Master of the house. Denoting here the Lord Jesus.

At even, or at midnight or, at etc.: This refers to the four divisions into which the Jews divided the night.

Verse 36. Find you sleeping. Inattentive to your post, neglecting your duty, and unprepared for his coming.

{v} "sleeping" Matthew 25:5

Verse 37. All, Watch. This command was proper, not only for those who were expecting the calamities that were soon to come upon the Jews, but for all who are soon to die, and to go to the judgment. We know not the time of our death. We know not how soon we shall be called to the judgment. The Son of man may come at any moment, and we should, therefore, be ready. If we are his friends-- if we have been renewed and pardoned--if we have repented of our sins, and have believed on him, and are leading a holy life--we are ready. If not, we are unprepared; and soon, probably while we are not expecting it, the cold hand of death will be laid on us, and we shall be hurried to the place where is weeping, and wailing, and gnashing of teeth. Oh, how important it is to be ready, and to escape the awful sufferings of an ETERNAL HELL!

{w} "Watch" Mark 13:33,35

Copyright Statement
These files are public domain and are a derivative of an electronic edition that is available on the Christian Classics Ethereal Library Website.

Bibliography Information
Barnes, Albert. "Commentary on Mark 13". "Barnes' Notes on the New Testament". <>.  


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