8:1 In those days there was another large crowd with nothing to eat. So 1 Jesus 2 called his disciples and said to them, 8:2 “I have compassion on the crowd, because they have already been here with me three days, and they have nothing to eat. 8:3 If I send them home hungry, they will faint on the way, and some of them have come from a great distance.” 8:4 His disciples answered him, “Where can someone get enough bread in this desolate place to satisfy these people?” 8:5 He asked them, “How many loaves do you have?” They replied, “Seven.” 8:6 Then 3 he directed the crowd to sit down on the ground. After he took the seven loaves and gave thanks, he broke them and began giving them to the disciples to serve. So 4 they served the crowd. 8:7 They also had a few small fish. After giving thanks for these, he told them to serve these as well. 8:8 Everyone 5 ate and was satisfied, and they picked up the broken pieces left over, seven baskets full. 8:9 There were about four thousand 6 who ate. 7 Then he dismissed them. 8 8:10 Immediately he got into a boat with his disciples and went to the district of Dalmanutha. 9
8:11 Then the Pharisees 10 came and began to argue with Jesus, asking for 11 a sign from heaven 12 to test him. 8:12 Sighing deeply in his spirit he said, “Why does this generation look for a sign? I tell you the truth, 13 no sign will be given to this generation.” 8:13 Then 14 he left them, got back into the boat, and went to the other side.
8:14 Now 15 they had forgotten to take bread, except for one loaf they had with them in the boat. 8:15 And Jesus 16 ordered them, 17 “Watch out! Beware of the yeast of the Pharisees 18 and the yeast of Herod!” 8:16 So they began to discuss with one another about having no bread. 19 8:17 When he learned of this, 20 Jesus said to them, “Why are you arguing 21 about having no bread? Do you still not see or understand? Have your hearts been hardened? 8:18 Though you have eyes, don’t you see? And though you have ears, can’t you hear? 22 Don’t you remember? 8:19 When I broke the five loaves for the five thousand, how many baskets full of pieces did you pick up?” They replied, “Twelve.” 8:20 “When I broke the seven loaves for the four thousand, how many baskets full of pieces did you pick up?” They replied, 23 “Seven.” 8:21 Then 24 he said to them, “Do you still not understand?” 25
8:22 Then 26 they came to Bethsaida. They brought a blind man to Jesus 27 and asked him to touch him. 8:23 He took the blind man by the hand and brought him outside of the village. Then 28 he spit on his eyes, placed his hands on his eyes 29 and asked, “Do you see anything?” 8:24 Regaining his sight 30 he said, “I see people, but they look like trees walking.” 8:25 Then Jesus 31 placed his hands on the man’s 32 eyes again. And he opened his eyes, 33 his sight was restored, and he saw everything clearly. 8:26 Jesus 34 sent him home, saying, “Do not even go into the village.” 35
8:27 Then Jesus and his disciples went to the villages of Caesarea Philippi. 36 On the way he asked his disciples, 37 “Who do people say that I am?” 8:28 They said, 38 “John the Baptist, others say Elijah, 39 and still others, one of the prophets.” 8:29 He asked them, “But who do you say that I am?” Peter answered him, 40 “You are the Christ.” 41 8:30 Then 42 he warned them not to tell anyone about him. 43
8:31 Then 44 Jesus 45 began to teach them that the Son of Man must suffer 46 many things and be rejected by the elders, chief priests, and experts in the law, 47 and be killed, and after three days rise again. 8:32 He spoke openly about this. So 48 Peter took him aside and began to rebuke him. 8:33 But after turning and looking at his disciples, he rebuked Peter and said, “Get behind me, Satan. You are not setting your mind on God’s interests, but on man’s.” 49
8:34 Then 50 Jesus 51 called the crowd, along with his disciples, and said to them, “If anyone wants to become my follower, 52 he must deny 53 himself, take up his cross, 54 and follow me. 8:35 For whoever wants to save his life 55 will lose it, 56 but whoever loses his life for my sake and for the gospel will save it. 8:36 For what benefit is it for a person 57 to gain the whole world, yet 58 forfeit his life? 8:37 What can a person give in exchange for his life? 8:38 For if anyone is ashamed of me and my words in this adulterous and sinful generation, the Son of Man will also be ashamed of him 59 when he comes in the glory of his Father with the holy angels.”
[8:9] 8 sn Mark 8:1-10. Many commentators, on the basis of similarities between this account of the feeding of the multitude (8:1-10) and that in 6:30-44, have argued that there is only one event referred to in both passages. While there are similarities in language and in the response of the disciples, there are also noticeable differences, including the different number present on each occasion (i.e., 5,000 in chap. 6 and 4,000 here). In the final analysis, the fact that Jesus refers to two distinct feedings in 8:18-20 settles the issue; this passage represents another very similar incident to that recorded in 6:30-44.
[8:20] 23 tc ‡ A difficult textual problem is found here, involving three different variants: καὶ λέγουσιν (kai legousin) is found in א pc; οἱ δὲ εἶπον (Joi de eipon) is the reading of Ì45 A D W Θ Ë1,13 33 Ï it; and καὶ λέγουσιν αὐτῷ (kai legousin autw) is supported by B C L (Δ 579 892) 2427 pc. The first two variants would not be translated differently; the third reading, however, would add “to him” after “they replied.” What complicates the issue is that the external evidence is fairly evenly split between the second and third readings, though the first reading is in agreement with the second reading in lacking the dative pronoun. Indeed, another layout of the problem here could treat this as two distinct problems: καὶ λέγουσιν vs. οἱ δὲ εἶπον and αὐτῷ vs. omission of the word. In this second arrangement of the problem, the reading without the pronoun has slightly stronger support (Ì45 א A D W Θ Ë1,13 33 Ï it). Internally, Mark never elsewhere uses the form εἶπον for the third person plural indicative form of this verb (it is always εἶπαν [eipan]). And although only one other time in Mark is the object lacking after λέγουσιν (6:38), it is a similar context (viz., the disciples’ response before Jesus feeds the 5000). Very tentatively, the reading that is followed here is καὶ λέγουσιν. NA27 puts αὐτῷ in brackets, indicating some doubt as to its authenticity.
[8:21] 25 sn Do you still not understand? The disciples in Mark’s Gospel often misunderstood the miracles of Jesus as well as his teaching. Between Matthew, Mark, and Luke, Mark paints the most revealing portrait of the shortcomings of the Twelve (cf. 6:51-52; 7:17-19; 8:1-10, 14-21, 27-30, 33; 9:5, 10, 33; 10:28, 35-45; 14:19, 29-31, 32-37, 50, 66-72).
[8:23] 28 tn Grk “village, and.” Here καί (kai) has been translated as “then” to indicate the implied sequence of events within the narrative. Because of the length and complexity of the Greek sentence, a new sentence was started here in the translation.
tc Codex Bezae (D) replaces “Do not even go into the village” with “Go to your house, and do not tell anyone, not even in the village.” Other
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.
[8:30] 43 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.
[8:31] 46 sn The necessity that the Son of Man suffer is the particular point that needed emphasis, since for many 1st century Jews the Messiah was a glorious and powerful figure, not a suffering one.
[8:35] 56 sn The point of the saying whoever wants to save his life will lose it is that if one comes to Jesus then rejection by many will certainly follow. If self-protection is a key motivation, then one will not respond to Jesus and will not be saved. One who is willing to risk rejection will respond and find true life.