Tuesday, July 7, 2009

Mark 6:14-29


Summary:  It is quite odd that this story appears as a lectionary text.  It is quite striking the contrast between the work of the powers in this world and the powers of Christ:  Throw a banquet for pleasuring the wealthy with sex and macabre vs feeding the poor; decapitation of the noble; recapitulation of all things, including human failings, into the cross.

6:14 Herod hears that Jesus' name has become known (or manifest: phaneros/φανερος). Jesus warned in 3.12 not to make known (phaneros) what had happened; and that in 4.22, things will be made known. Well, now things have been made known and the result is not good.

6:14 The word "dyanmis" (δυναμις) continues to "manifest" itself in Mark; here it is in the plural which means it should be translated miracles.

6:15 There is no reference to "long ago/prophets of the past." The Greek simply says, "a prophet as one of the prophets."

6:19 The word for "hold a grudge" is literally "have-in (ενεχω)" kind of like have it in for someone.

6:20 There is an odd juxtaposition this week: Ephesians says we will be holy before God; here John is considered holy (αγιος) before Herod.

6:21 Herod throws a banquet here (δειρνον). The next chapter Jesus will throw a meal for his disciples and the 5,000.

6:22 Twice Herod is cited at enjoying things -- (ηδεως, gladly he listened to John and and he was pleased, ηρεσεν/αρεσκω with the dancing)...yet by 6.26 he is deeply grieved (περιλυπος), the same word of Jesus in the Garden (I am deeply greieved).

6.27 Herod orders John αποκεφαλιζω (beheaded); this then presents a fascinating juxtaposition between the Ephesians 1 text and this one; Jesus ανακεφαλιοω (Eph 1:10, recapitulates, brings all things together, heads all things up) whereas all Herod can do is decapitate.

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