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The Last Twelve Verses Of The Gospel According To S Mark by John William Burgon


The |Style| and |Phraseology| of these Verses declared by Critics to be not S. Mark's. -- Insecurity of such Criticism (p.140). -- The |Style| of chap. xvi.9-20 shown to be the same as the style of chap. i.9-20 (p.142). -- The |Phraseology| examined in twenty-seven particulars, and skews to be auspicious in none (p.145), -- but in twenty-seven particulars shewn to be the reverse (p.170). -- Such Remarks fallacious (p.173). -- Judged of by a truer, a more delicate and philosophical Test, these Verses proved to be most probably genuine (p.175).

A DISTINCT class of objections remains to be considered. An argument much relied on by those who deny or doubt the genuineness of this portion of S. Mark's Gospel, is derived from considerations of internal evidence. In the judgment of a recent Editor of the New Testament, -- These twelve verses |bear traces of another hand from that which has shaped the diction and construction of the rest of the Gospel .| They are therefore |an addition to the narrative,| -- of which |the internal evidence will be found to preponderate vastly against the authorship of Mark.| -- |A difference,| (says Dr. Tregelles,) |has been remarked, and truly remarked, between the phraseology of this section and the rest of this Gospel.| -- According to Dr. Davidson,| The phraseology and style of the section are unfavourable to its authenticity.| |The characteristic peculiarities which pervade Mark's Gospel do not appear in it; but, on the contrary, terms and expressions,| |phrases and words, are introduced which Mark never uses; or terms for which he employs others .| -- So Meyer, -- |With ver.9, we suddenly come upon an excerpting process totally different from the previous mode of narration. The passage contains none of Mark's peculiarities (no eutheos, no palin, &c., but the baldness and lack of clearness which mark a compiler;) while in single expressions, it is altogether contrary to Mark's manner.| -- |There is| (says Professor Norton) |a difference so great between the use of language in this passage, and its use in the undisputed portion of Mark's Gospel, as to furnish strong reasons for believing the passage not genuine.| -- No one, however, has expressed himself more strongly on this subject than Tischendorf.| |Singula| (he says) |multifariam a Marci ratione abhorrent .| . . . Here, then, is something very like a consensus of hostile opinion: although the terms of the indictment are somewhat vague. Difference of |Diction and Construction,| -- difference of |Phraseology and Style,| -- difference of |Terms and
Expressions,| -- difference of |Words and Phrases;| -- the absence of S. Mark's |characteristic peculiarities.| I suppose, however, that all may be brought under two heads, -- (I.) Style, and (II.) Phraseology: meaning by |Style| whatever belongs to the Evangelist's manner; and by |Phraseology| whatever relates to the words and expressions he has employed. It remains, therefore, that we now examine the proofs by which it is proposed to substantiate these confident assertions, and ascertain exactly what they are worth by constant appeals to the Gospel. Throughout this inquiry, we have to do not with Opinion but with Fact. The unsupported dicta of Critics, however distinguished, are entitled to no manner of attention.

1. In the meantime, as might have been expected, these confident and often-repeated asseverations have been by no means unproductive of mischievous results:

Like ceaseless droppings, which at last are known
To leave their dint upon the solid stone.

I observe that Scholars and Divines of the best type (as the Rev. T. S. Green ) at last put up with them. The wisest however reproduce them under protest, and with apology. The names of Tischendorf and Tregelles, Meyer and Davidson, command attention. It seems to be thought incredible that they can all be entirely in the wrong. They impose upon learned and unlearned readers alike. |Even Barnabas has been carried away with their dissimulation.| He has (to my surprise and regret) two suggestions: --

(a) The one, -- That this entire section of the second Gospel may possibly have been written long after the rest; and that therefore its verbal peculiarities need not perplex or trouble us. It was, I suppose, (according to this learned and pious writer,) a kind of after-thought, or supplement, or Appendix to S. Mark's Gospel. In this way I have seen the last Chapter of S. John once and again accounted for. -- To which, it ought to be a sufficient answer to point out that there is no appearance whatever of any such interval having been interposed between S. Mark xvi.8 and 9: that it is highly improbable that any such interval occurred: and that until the |verbal peculiarities| have been ascertained to exist, it is, to say the least, a gratuitous exercise of the inventive faculty to discover reasons for their existence. Whether there be not something radically unsound and wrong in all such conjectures about |after-thoughts,| |supplements,| |appendices,| and |second editions| when the everlasting Gospel of Jesus Christ is the thing spoken of, -- a confusing of things heavenly with things earthly which must make the Angels weep, -- I forbear to press on the present occasion. It had better perhaps be discussed at another opportunity. But philoi andres will forgive my freedom in having already made my personal sentiment on the subject sufficiently plain.

(b) His other suggestion is, -- That this portion may not have been penned by S. Mark himself after all. By which he clearly means no more than this, -- that as we are content not to know who wrote the conclusion of the Books of Deuteronomy and Joshua, so, if needful, we may well be content not to know who wrote the end of the Gospel of S. Mark. -- In reply to which, I have but to say, that after cause has been shewn why we should indeed believe that not S. Mark but some one else wrote the end of S. Mark's Gospel, we shall be perfectly willing to acquiesce in the new fact: -- but not till then.

2. True indeed it is that here and there a voice has been lifted up in the way of protest against the proposed inference from the familiar premisses; (for the self-same statements have now been so often reproduced, that the eye grows weary at last of the ever-recurring string of offending vocables:) -- but, with one honorable exception , men do not seem to have ever thought of calling the premisses themselves in question: examining the statements one by one: contesting the ground inch by inch: refusing absolutely to submit to any dictation whatever in this behalf: insisting on bringing the whole matter to the test of severe inquiry, and making every detail the subject of strict judicial investigation. This is what I propose to do in the course of the present Chapter. I altogether deny the validity of the inference which has been drawn from |the style,| |the phraseology,| |the diction| of the present section of the Gospel. But I do more. I entirely deny the accuracy of almost every individual statement from which the unfavourable induction is made, and the hostile inference drawn. Even this will not nearly satisfy me. I insist that one only result can attend the exact analysis of this portion of the Gospel into its elements; namely, a profound conviction that S. Mark is most certainly its Author.

3. Let me however distinctly declare beforehand that remarks on |the style| of an Evangelist are singularly apt to be fallacious, especially when (as here) it is proposed to apply them to a very limited portion of the sacred narrative. Altogether to be mistrusted moreover are they, when (as on the present occasion) it is proposed to make them the ground for possibly rejecting such a portion of Scripture as spurious. It becomes a fatal objection to such reasoning that the style may indeed be exceedingly diverse, and yet the Author be confessedly one and the same. How exceedingly dissimilar in style are the Revelation of S. John and the Gospel of S. John! Moreover, practically, the promised remarks on |style,| when the Authorship of some portion of Scripture is to be discussed, are commonly observed to degenerate at once into what is really quite a different thing. Single words, perhaps some short phrase, is appealed to, which (it is said) does not recur in any part of the same book; and thence it is argued that the Author can no longer be the same. |According to this argument, the recurrence of the same words constitutes identity of style; the want of such recurrence implies difference of style; -- difference of style in such a sense as compels us to infer diversity of authorship. Each writer is supposed to have at his disposal a limited number of formulae' within the range of which he must work. He must in each chapter employ these formulae, and these only. He must be content with one small portion of his mother-tongue, and not dare to venture across the limits of that portion, -- on pain of losing his identity .|

How utterly insecure must be every approximation to such a method of judging about the Authorship of any twelve verses of Scripture which can be named, scarcely requires illustration. The attentive reader of S. Matthew's Gospel is aware that a mode of expression which is six times repeated in his viii^th and ix^th chapters is perhaps only once met with besides in his Gospel, -- viz. in his xxi^st chapter . The |style| of the 17th verse of his i^st chapter may be thought unlike anything else in S. Matthew. S. Luke's five opening verses are unique, both in respect of manner and of matter. S. John also in his five opening verses seems to me to have adopted a method which is not recognisable anywhere else in his writings; |rising strangely by degrees,| (as Bp. Pearson expresses it ,) |making the last word of the former sentence the first of that which followeth.| -- |He knoweth that he saith true,| is the language of the same Evangelist concerning himself in chap. xix.35. But, |we know that his testimony is true,| is his phrase in chap. xxi.24. Twice, and twice only throughout his Gospel, (viz. in chap. xix.35: xx.31), is he observed to address his readers, and on both occasions in the same words: (|that ye may believe.|) But what of all this? Is it to be supposed that S. Matthew, S. Luke, S. John are not the authors of those several places? From facts like these no inference whatever is to be drawn as to the genuineness or the spuriousness of a writing. It is quite to mistake the Critic's vocation to imagine that he is qualified, or called upon, to pass any judgment of the sort.

5. I have not said all this, of course, as declining the proposed investigation. I approach it on the contrary right willingly, being confident that it can be attended by only one result. With what is true, endless are the harmonies which evolve themselves: from what is false, the true is equally certain to stand out divergent . And we all desire nothing but the Truth.

I. To begin then with the |Style and manner| of S. Mark in this place.

1. We are assured that |instead of the graphic, detailed description by which this Evangelist is distinguished, we meet with an abrupt, sententious manner, resembling that of brief notices extracted from larger accounts and loosely linked together .| Surely if this be so, the only lawful inference would be that S. Mark, in this place, has |extracted brief notices from larger accounts, and loosely linked them together:| and unless such a proceeding on the part of the Evangelist be judged incredible, it is hard to see what is the force of the adverse criticism, as directed against the genuineness of the passage now under consideration.

2. But in truth, (when divested of what is merely a gratuitous assumption,) the preceding account of the matter is probably not far from the correct one. Of S. Mark's practice of making |extracts,| I know nothing: nor Dr. Davidson either. That there existed any |larger accounts| which would. have been available for such a purpose, (except the Gospel according to S. Matthew,) there is neither a particle of evidence, nor a shadow of probability. On the other hand, that, notwithstanding the abundant oral information to which confessedly he had access, S. Mark has been divinely guided in this place to handle, in the briefest manner, some of the chiefest things which took place after our Lord's Resurrection, -- is simply undeniable. And without at all admitting that the style of the Evangelist is in consequence either |abrupt| or |sententious ,| I yet recognise the inevitable consequence of relating many dissimilar things within very narrow limits; namely, that the transition from one to the other forces itself on the attention. What wonder that the same phenomenon should not be discoverable in other parts of the Gospel where the Evangelist is not observed to be doing the same thing?

3. But wherever in his Gospel S. Mark is doing the same thing, he is observed to adopt the style and manner which Dr. Davidson is pleased to call |sententious| and |abrupt.| Take twelve verses in his first chapter, as an example. Between S. Mark xvi.9-20 and S. Mark i.9-20, I profess myself unable to discern any real difference of style. I proceed to transcribe the passage which I deliberately propose for comparison; the twelve corresponding verses, namely, in S. Mark's first chapter, which are to be compared with the twelve verses already under discussion, from his last; and they may be just as conveniently exhibited in English as in Greek: --

(S. Mark i.9-20.)

(ver.9.) |And it came to pass in those days, that Jesus came from Nazareth of Galilee, and was baptized of John in Jordan. (10.) And straightway coming up out of the water, He saw the heavens opened, and the Spirit like a dove descending upon Him: (11.) and there came a voice from heaven saying, Thou art My beloved Son, in whom I am well pleased. (12.) And immediately the Spirit driveth Him into the wilderness. (13.) And He was there in the wilderness forty days, tempted of Satan; and was with the wild beasts; and the Angels ministered unto Him. (14.) Now after that John was put in prison, Jesus came into Galilee, preaching the gospel of the kingdom of God, (15.) and saying, The time is fulfilled, and the Kingdom of Goy is at hand: repent ye, and believe the Gospel. (16.) Now, as He walked by the sea of Galilee, He saw Simon and Andrew his brother casting a net into the sea: for they were fishers. (17.) And Jesus said unto them, Come ye after Me, and I will make you to become fishers of men. (18.) And straightway they forsook their nets, and followed Him. (19.) And when He had gone a little farther thence, He saw James the son of Zebedee, and John his brother, who also were in the ship mending their nets. (20.) And straightway He called them; and they left their father Zebedee in the ship with the hired servants, and went after Him.|

4. The candid reader must needs admit that precisely the self-same manner is recognisable in this first chapter of S. Mark's Gospel which is asserted to be peculiar to the last. Note, that from our Saviour's Baptism (which occupies the first three verses) the Evangelist passes to His Temptation, which is dismissed in two. Six months elapse. The commencement of the Ministry is dismissed in the next two verses. The last five describe the call of four of the Apostles, -- without any distinct allusion to the miracle which was the occasion of it. . . . How was it possible that when incidents considerable as these had to be condensed within the narrow compass of twelve verses, the same |graphic, detailed description| could reappear which renders S. Mark's description of the miracle performed in the country of the Gadarenes (for example) so very interesting; where a single incident is spread over twenty verses, although the action did not perhaps occupy an hour? I rejoice to observe that |the abrupt transitions of this section| (ver.1-13) have also been noticed by Dean Alford: who very justly accounts for the phenomenon by pointing out that here |Mark appears as an abridger of previously well-known facts .| But then, I want to know what there is in this to induce us to suspect the genuineness of either the beginning or the end of S. Mark's Gospel?

5. For it is a mistake to speak as if |graphic, detailed description| invariably characterise the second Gospel. S. Mark is quite as remarkable for his practice of occasionally exhibiting a considerable transaction in a highly abridged form. The opening of his Gospel is singularly concise, and altogether sudden. His account of John's preaching (i.1-8) is the shortest of all. Very concise is his account of our Saviour's Baptism (ver.9-11). The brevity of his description of our Lord's Temptation is even extraordinary (ver.12, 13.) -- I pass on; premising that I shall have occasion to remind the reader by-and-by of certain peculiarities in these same Twelve Verses, which seem to have been hitherto generally overlooked.

II. Nothing more true, therefore, than Dr. Tregelles' admission |that arguments on style are often very fallacious, and that by themselves they prove very little. But| (he proceeds) |when there does exist external evidence; and when internal proofs as to style, manner, verbal expression, and connection, are in accordance with such independent grounds of forming a judgment; then, these internal considerations possess very great weight.|

I have already shewn that there exists no such external evidence as Dr. Tregelles supposes. And in the absence of it, I am bold to assert that since nothing in the |Style| or the |Phraseology| of these verses ever aroused suspicion in times past, we have rather to be on our guard against suffering our judgment to be warped by arguments drawn from such precarious considerations now. As for determining from such data the authorship of an isolated passage; asserting or denying its genuineness for no other reason but because it contains certain words and expressions which do or do not occur elsewhere in the Gospel of which it forms part; -- let me again declare plainly that the proceeding is in the highest degree uncritical. We are not competent judges of what words an Evangelist was likely on any given occasion to employ. We have no positive knowledge of the circumstances under which any part of any one of the four Gospels was written; nor the influences which determined an Evangelist's choice of certain expressions in preference to others. We are learners, -- we can be only learners here. But having said all this, I proceed (as already declared) without reluctance or misgiving to investigate the several charges which have been brought against this section of the Gospel; charges derived from its Phraseology; and which will be found to be nothing else but repeated assertions that a certain Word or Phrase, -- (there are about twenty-four such words and phrases in all ,) -- |occurs nowhere in the Gospel of Mark;| with probably the alarming asseveration that it is |abhorrent to Mark's manner.| . . . . The result of the inquiry which follows will perhaps be not exactly what is commonly imagined.

The first difficulty of this class is very fairly stated by one whose name I cannot write without a pang, -- the late Dean Alford: --

(I.) The expression pro'te sabba'tou, for the |first day of the week| (in ver.9) |is remarkable| (he says) |as occurring so soon after| mia sabba'ton, (a precisely equivalent expression) in ver.2. -- Yes, it is remarkable.

Scarcely more remarkable, perhaps, than that S. Luke in the course of one and the same chapter should four times designate the Sabbath to sabbaton, and twice ta sabbata: again, twice, to sabbaton, -- twice, he hemera tou sabba'tou, -- and once, ta sabbata . Or again, that S. Matthew should in one and the same chapter five times call the Sabbath, ta sabbata, and three times, to sabbaton . Attentive readers will have observed that the Evangelists seem to have been fond in this way of varying their phrase; suddenly introducing a new expression for something which they had designated differently just before. Often, I doubt not, this is done with the profoundest purpose, and sometimes even with manifest design; but the phenomenon, however we may explain it, still remains. Thus, S. Matthew, (in his account of our Lord's Temptation, -- chap. iv.,) has o dia'bolos in ver.1, and o peira'zon, in ver.3, for him whom our Saviour calls Satanas in ver.10. -- S. Mark, in chap. v.2, has ta mneme+a, -- but in ver.5, ta mnemata. -- S. Luke, in xxiv.1, has to mnema; but in the next verse, to mnemeion. -- Epi. with an accusative twice in S. Matth. xxv.21, 23, is twice exchanged for epi with a genitive in the same two verses: and eriphoi (in ver.32) is exchanged for eriphia in ver.33. -- Instead of a'rchon tes sunagoges (in S. Luke viii.41) we read, in ver.49, archisunagogos: and for oi apo'stoloi (in ix.10) we find oi do'deka in ver.12. -- Ous in S. Luke xxii.50 is exchanged for hotion in the next verse. -- In like manner, those whom S. Luke calls oi neo'teroi in Acts v.6, he calls neani'skoi in ver.10. . . . All such matters strike me as highly interesting, but not in the least as suspicious. It surprises me a little, of course, that S. Mark should present me with prote sabbatou (in ver.9) instead of the phrase mia sabbaton, which he had employed just above (in ver.2.) But it does not surprise me much, -- when I observe that mia sabbaton occurs only once in each of the Four Gospels . Whether surprised much or little, however, -- Am I constrained in consequence, (with Tischendorf and the rest,) to regard this expression (prote sabbatou) as a note of spuriousness? That is the only thing I have to consider. Am I, with Dr. Davidson, to reason as follows: -- |prote, Mark would scarcely have used. It should have been mia, &c. as is proved by Mark xvi.2, &c. The expression could scarcely have proceeded from a Jew. It betrays a Gentile author .| Am I to reason thus? . . . I propose to answer this question somewhat in detail.

(1.) That among the Greek-speaking Jews of Palestine, in the days of the Gospel, he mia ton sabba'ton was the established method of indicating |the first day of the week,| is plain, not only from the fact that the day of the Resurrection is so designated by each of the Four Evangelists in turn ; (S. John has the expression twice;) but also from S. Paul's use of the phrase in 1 Cor. xvi.2. It proves, indeed, to have been the ordinary Hellenistic way of exhibiting the vernacular idiom of Palestine . The cardinal (mia) for the ordinal (prote) in this phrase was a known Talmudic expression, which obtained also in Syriac . Sabbaton and sabbata, -- designations in strictness of the Sabbath-day, -- had come to be also used as designations of the week. A reference to S. Mark xvi.9 and S. Luke xviii.12 establishes this concerning sabbaton: a reference to the six places cited just now in note (s) establishes it concerning sabbata. To see how indifferently the two forms (sabbaton and sabbata) were employed, one has but to notice that S. Matthew, in the course of one and the same chapter, five times designates the Sabbath as ta sabbata, and three times as to sabbaton . The origin and history of both words will be found explained in a note at the foot of the page

(2.) Confessedly, then, a double Hebraism is before us, which must have been simply unintelligible to Gentile readers. Mia ton sabbaton sounded as enigmatical to an ordinary Greek ear, as |una sabbatorum| to a Roman. A convincing proof, (if proof were needed,) how abhorrent to a Latin reader was the last-named expression, is afforded by the old Latin versions of S. Matthew xxviii.1; where opse sabba'ton, te epiphoskou'se eis mi'an sabba'ton, is invariably rendered, |Vespere sabbati, quae lucescit in prima sabbati.|

(3.) The reader will now be prepared for the suggestion, that when S. Mark, (who is traditionally related to have written his Gospel at Rome ,) varies, in ver.9, the phrase he had employed in ver.2, he does so for an excellent and indeed for an obvious reason. In ver.2, be had conformed to the prevailing usage of Palestine, and followed the example set him by S. Matthew (xxviii.1) in adopting the enigmatical expression, he mi'a sabba'ton. That this would be idiomatically represented in Latin by the phrase |prima sabbati,| we have already seen. In ver.9, therefore, he is solicitous to record the fact of the Resurrection afresh; and this time, his phrase is observed to be the Greek equivalent for the Latin |prima sabbati;| viz. prote sabbatou. How strictly equivalent the two modes of expression were felt to be by those who were best qualified to judge, is singularly illustrated by the fact that the Syriac rendering of both places is identical.

(4.) But I take leave to point out that this substituted phrase, instead of being a suspicious circumstance, is on the contrary a striking note of genuineness. For do we not recognise here, in the last chapter of the Gospel, the very same hand which, in the first chapter of it, was careful to inform us, just for once, that |Judaea,| is |a country,| (he Ioudaia chora,) -- and |Jordan,| |a river,| (he Iordanes potamos)? -- Is not this the very man who explained to his readers (in chap. xv.42) that the familiar Jewish designation for |Friday,| he paraskeue, denotes |the day before the Sabbath ?| -- and who was so minute in informing us (in chap. vii.3, 4) about certain ceremonial practices of |the Pharisees and all the Jews?| Yet more, -- Is not the selfsame writer clearly recognisable in this xvi^th chapter, who in chap. vi.37 presented us with spekoulator (the Latin spiculator) for |an executioner?| and who, in chap. xv.39, for |a centurion,| wrote -- not hekatontarchos, but -- kenturion? -- and, in chap. xii.42, explained that the two lepta which the poor widow cast into the Treasury were equivalent to kodrantes, the Latin quadrans? -- and in chap. vii.4, 8, introduced the Roman measure sextarius, (xestes)? -- and who volunteered the information (in chap. xv.16) that aule; is only another designation of praitorion (Praetorium)? -- Yes. S. Mark, -- who, alone of the four Evangelists, (in chap. xv.21,) records the fact that Simon the Cyrenian was |the father of Alexander and Rufus,| evidently for the sake of his Latin readers : S. Mark, -- who alone ventures to write in Greek letters (oua, -- chap. xv.29,) the Latin interjection |Vah!| -- obviously because be was writing where that exclamation was most familiar, and the force of it best understood : S. Mark, -- who attends to the Roman division of the day, in relating our Lord's prophecy to S. Peter : -- S. Mark, I say, no doubt it was who, -- having conformed himself to the precedent set him by S. Matthew and the familiar usage. of Palestine; and having written tes mia? sabbaton, (which he knew would sound like |una sabbatorum ,|) in ver.2; -- introduced, also for the benefit of his Latin readers, the Greek equivalent for |prima sabbati,| (viz. prote sabbatou,) in ver.9. -- This, therefore, I repeat, so far from being a circumstance |unfavourable to its authenticity,| (by which, I presume, the learned writer means its genuineness), is rather corroborative of the Church's constant belief that the present section of S. Mark's Gospel is, equally with the rest of it, the production of S. Mark. |Not only was the document intended for Gentile converts:| (remarks Dr. Davidson, p.149,) |but there are also appearances of its adaptation to the use of Roman Christians in particular.| Just so. And I venture to say that in the whole of |the document| Dr. Davidson will not find a more striking |appearance of its adaptation to the use of Roman Christians,| -- and therefore of its genuineness, -- than this. I shall have to request my reader by-and-by to accept it as one of the most striking notes of Divine origin which these verses contain. -- For the moment, I pass on.

(II.) Less excusable is the coarseness of critical perception betrayed by the next remark. It has been pointed out as a suspicious circumstance that in ver.9, |the phrase aph' hes ekbeble'kei epta` daimo'nia, is attached to the name, of Mary Magdalene, although she had been mentioned three times before without such appendix. It seems to have been taken from Luke viii.2 .| -- Strange perversity, and yet stranger blindness!

(1.) The phrase cannot have been taken from S. Luke; because S. Luke's Gospel was written after S. Mark's. It was not taken from S. Luke; because there aph' hes daimo'nia epta` exelelu'thei, -- here, aph' hes ekbeble'kei epta` daimo'nia is read.

(2.) More important is it to expose the shallowness and futility of the entire objection. -- Mary Magdalene |had been mentioned three times before, without such appendix.| Well but, -- What then? After twice (ch. xiv.54, 66) using the word aule without any |appendix,| in the very next chapter (xv.16) S. Mark adds, o' estin praito'rion. -- The beloved Disciple having mentioned himself without any |appendix| in S. John xx.7, mentions himself with a very elaborate |appendix| in ver.20. But what of it? -- The sister of the Blessed Virgin, having been designated in chap. xv.40, as Mari'a e Iako'bou tou mikrou kai` Iose me'ter; is mentioned with one half of that |appendix,| (Mari'a e Iose) in ver.47, and in the very next verse, with the other half (Mari'a he tou Iakobou.) -- I see no reason why the Traitor, who, in S. Luke vi.16, is called Iou'das Iskario'ten, should be designated as Iou'dan to`n epikalou'menon Iskario'ten in S. Luke xxii.3. -- I am not saying that such |appendices| are either uninteresting or unimportant. That I attend to them habitually, these pages will best evince. I am only insisting that to infer from such varieties of expression that a different author is recognisable, is abhorrent to the spirit of intelligent Criticism.

(3.) But in the case before us, the hostile suggestion is peculiarly infelicitous. There is even inexpressible tenderness and beauty, the deepest Gospel significancy, in the reservation of the clause |out of whom He had cast seven devils,| for this place. The reason, I say, is even obvious why an |appendix,| which would have been meaningless before, is introduced in connexion with Mary Magdalene's august privilege of being the first of the human race to behold the risen Saviour. Jerome (I rejoice to find) has been beforehand with me in suggesting that it was done, in order to convey by an example the tacit assurance that |where Sin had abounded, there did Grace much more abound .| Are we to be cheated of our birthright by Critics who, entirely overlooking a solution of the difficulty (if difficulty it be) Divine as this, can see in the circumstance grounds only for suspicion and cavil? Apage.

(III.) Take the next example. -- The very form of the |appendix| which we have been considering (aph' hes ekbeblekei hepta daimonia breeds offence. |Instead of ekballein apo,| (oracularly remarks Dr. Davidson,) |Mark has ekballein ek .|

Nothing of the sort, I answer. S. Mark once has ekballein ek , and once ekballein apo. So has S. Matthew, (viz. in chap. vii.4 and 5): and so has S. Luke, (viz. in chap. vi.42, and in Acts xiii.50.) -- But what of all this? Who sees not that such Criticism is simply nugatory?

(IV.) We are next favoured with the notable piece of information that the word poreuesthai, |never used by S. Mark, is three times contained in this passage;| (viz. in verses 10, 12 and 15.)

(1.) Yes. The uncompounded verb, never used elsewhere by S. Mark, is found here three times. But what then? The compounds of poreuesthai are common enough in his Gospel. Thus, short as his Gospel is, he alone has eisporeusthai, ek-poreuesthai, sum-poreuesthai, para-poreuesthai, oftener than all the other three Evangelists put together, -- viz. twenty-four times against their nineteen: while the compound prosporeuesthai is peculiar to his Gospel. -- I am therefore inclined to suggest that the presence of the verb poreuesthai in these Twelve suspected Verses, instead of being an additional element of suspicion, is rather a circumstance slightly corroborative of their genuineness.

(2.) But suppose that the facts had been different. The phenomenon appealed to is of even perpetual recurrence, and may on no account be represented as suspicious. Thus, parousia, a word used only by S. Matthew among the Evangelists, is by him used four times; yet are all those four instances found in one and the same chapter. S. Luke alone has charizesthai, and he has it three times: but all three cases are met with in one and the same chapter. S. John alone has lupe, and he has it four times: but all the four instances occur in one and the same chapter.

(3.) Such instances might be multiplied to almost any extent. Out of the fifteen occasions when S. Matthew uses the word talanton, no less than fourteen occur in one chapter. The nine occasions when S. Luke uses the word mna all occur in one chapter. S. John uses the verb anistanai transitively only four times: but all four instances of it are found in one chapter. -- Now, these three words (be it observed) are peculiar to the Gospels in which they severally occur.

(4.) I shall of course be reminded that talanton and mna are unusual words, -- admitting of no substitute in the places where they respectively occur. But I reply, -- Unless the Critics are able to show me which of the ordinary compounds of poreuomaiS. Mark could possibly have employed for the uncompounded verb, in the three places which have suggested the present inquiry, viz.: --

ver.10: -- ekei'ne poreutheisa ape'ngeilen tois met' autou genome'nois.

ver.12: -- dusi`n ex auton . . . poreuome'nois eis agro'n.

ver.13: -- poreuthe'ntes eis to`n ko'smon a'panta, keru'xate to` euange'lion; --

their objection is simply frivolous, and the proposed adverse reasoning, worthless. Such, in fact, it most certainly is; for it will be found that poreutheisa in ver.10, -- poreuome'nois in ver.12, -- poreuthe'ntes in ver.15, -- also |admit of no substitute in the places where they severally occur;| and therefore, since the verb itself is one of S. Mark's favourite verbs, not only are these three places above suspicion, but they may be fairly adduced as indications that the same hand was at work here which wrote all the rest of his Gospel .

(V.) Then further, -- the phrase tois met' autou genome'nois (in ver.10) is noted as suspicious. |Though found in the Acts (xx.18) it never occurs in the Gospels: nor does the word mathetai in this passage.|

(1.) The phrase met' autou genomenoi occurs nowhere in the Acts or in the Gospels, except here. But, -- Why should it appear elsewhere? or rather, -- How could it? Now, if the expression be (as it is) an ordinary, easy, and obvious one, -- wanted in this place, where it is met with; but not met with elsewhere, simply because elsewhere it is not wanted; -- surely it is unworthy of any one calling himself a Critic to pretend that there attaches to it the faintest shadow of suspicion!

(2.) The essence of the phrase is clearly the expression hoi met' autou. (The aorist participle of ginomai is added of necessity to mark the persons spoken of. In no other, (certainly in no simpler, more obvious, or more precise) way could the followers of the risen Saviour have been designated at such a time. For had He not just now |overcome the sharpness of Death|?) But this expression, which occurs four times in S. Matthew and four times in S. Luke, occurs also four times in S. Mark: viz. in chap. i.36; 25; v.40, and here. This, therefore, is a slightly corroborative circumstance, -- not at all a ground of suspicion.

(3.) But it seems to be implied that S. Mark, because he mentions tous mathetas often elsewhere in his Gospel, ought to have mentioned them here.

(a) I answer: -- He does not mention tous mathetas nearly so often as S. Matthew; while S. John notices them twice as often as he does.

(b) Suppose, however, that he elsewhere mentioned them five hundred times, because he had occasion five hundred times to speak of them; -- what reason would that be for his mentioning them here, where he is not speaking of them?

(c) It must be evident to any one reading the Gospel with attention that besides hoi mathetai, -- (by which expression S. Mark always designates the Twelve Apostles,) -- there was a considerable company of believers assembled together throughout the first Easter Day . S. Luke notices this circumstance when he relates how the Women, on their return from the Sepulchre, |told all these things unto the Eleven, and to all the rest,| (xxiv.9): and again when he describes how Cleopas and his companion (duo ex auton as S. Luke and S. Mark call them) on their return to Jerusalem, |found the Eleven gathered together, and then that were with them.| (xxiv.33.) But this was at least as well known to S. Mark as it was to S. Luke. Instead, therefore, of regarding the designation |them that had been with Him| with suspicion, -- are we not rather to recognise in it one token more that the narrative in which it occurs is unmistakably genuine? What else is this but one of those delicate discriminating touches which indicate the hand of a great Master; one of those evidences of minute accuracy which stamp on a narrative the impress of unquestionable Truth?

(VI.) We are next assured by our Critic that theasthai |is unknown to Mark;| but it occurs twice in this section, (viz. in ver.11 and ver.14.) Another suspicious circumstance!

(1.) A strange way (as before) of stating an ordinary fact, certainly! What else is it but to assume the thing which has to be proved? If the learned writer had said instead, that the verb theasthai, here twice employed by S. Mark, occurs nowhere else in his Gospel, -- he would have acted more loyally, not to say more fairly by the record: but then he would have been stating a strictly ordinary phenomenon, -- of no significancy, or relevancy to the matter in hand. He is probably aware that parabainein in like manner is to be found in two consecutive verses of S. Matthew's Gospel; parakouein, twice in the course of one verse: neither word being used on any other occasion either by S. Matthew, or by any other Evangelist. The same thing precisely is to be said of anazetein and antapodidonai, of antiparerchesthai and diatithesthai, in S. Luke: of anistanai and zonnunai in S. John. But who ever dreamed of insinuating that the circumstance is suspicious?

(2.) As for theasthai, we should have reminded our Critic that this verb, which is used seven times by S. John, and four times by S. Matthew, is used only three times by S. Luke, and only twice by S. Mark. And we should have respectfully inquired, -- What possible suspicion does theasthai throw upon the last twelve verses of S. Mark's Gospel?

(3.) None whatever, would have been the reply. But in the meantime Dr. Davidson hints that the verb ought to have been employed by S. Mark in chap. ii.14 . -- It is, I presume, sufficient to point out that S. Matthew, at all events, was not of Dr. Davidson's opinion : and I respectfully submit that the Evangelist, inasmuch as he happens to be here writing about himself, must be allowed, just for once, to be the better judge.

(4.) In the meantime, -- Is it not perceived that theasthai is the very word specially required in these two places, -- though nowhere else in S. Mark's Gospel ? The occasion is one, -- viz. the beholding' of the person of the risen Saviour. Does not even natural piety suggest that the uniqueness of such a spectacle' as that might well set an Evangelist on casting about for a word of somewhat less ordinary occurrence? The occasion cries aloud for this very verb theasthai; and I can hardly conceive a more apt illustration of a darkened eye, -- a spiritual faculty perverted from its lawful purpose, -- than that which only discovers |a stumbling-block and occasion of falling| in expressions like the present which |should have been only for their wealth,| being so manifestly designed for their edification.

(VII.) But, -- (it is urged by a Critic of a very different stamp,) -- ethea'the up' autes (ver.11) |is a construction only found here in the New Testament.|

(1.) Very likely; but what then? The learned writer has evidently overlooked the fact that the passive theasthai occurs but three times in the New Testament in all . S. Matthew, on the two occasions when he employs the word, connects it with a dative . What is there suspicious in the circumstance that theasthai hupo should be the construction preferred by S. Mark? The phenomenon is not nearly so remarkable as that S. Luke, on one solitary occasion, exhibits the phrase me phobeisthe apo , -- instead of making the verb govern the accusative, as he does three times in the very next verse; and, indeed, eleven times in the course of his Gospel. To be sure, S. Luke in this instance is but copying S. Matthew, who also has me phobeisthe apo once ; and seven times makes the verb govern an accusative. This, nevertheless, constitutes no reason whatever for suspecting the genuineness either of S. Matth. x.28 or of S. Luke xii.4.

(2.) In like manner, the phrase ephobethesan phobon megan will be found to occur once, and once only, in S. Mark, -- once, and once only, in S. Luke ; although S. Mark and S. Luke use the verb phobeisthai upwards of forty times. Such facts are interesting. They may prove important. But no one who is ever so little conversant with such inquiries will pretend that they are in the least degree suspicious. -- I pass on.

(VIII.) It is next noted as a suspicious circumstance that apistein occurs in ver.11 and in ver.16; but nowhere else in the Gospels, -- except in S. Luke xxiv.11, 14.

But really, such a remark is wholly without force, as an argument against the genuineness of the passage in which the word is found: for,

(1.) Where else in the course of this Gospel could apistein have occurred? Now, unless some reason can be shewn why the word should, or at least might have been employed elsewhere, to remark upon its introduction in this place, where it could scarcely be dispensed with, as a ground of suspicion, is simply irrational. It might just as well be hold to be a suspicious circumstance, in respect of verses 3 and 4, that the verb apokulizein occurs there, and there only, in this Gospel. Nothing whatever follows from the circumstance. It is, in fact, a point scarcely deserving of attention.

(2.) To be sure, if the case of a verb exclusively used by the two Evangelists, S. Mark and S. Luke, were an unique, or even an exceedingly rare phenomenon, it might have been held to be a somewhat suspicious circumstance that the phenomenon presented itself in the present section. But nothing of the sort is the fact. There are no fewer than forty-five verbs exclusively used by S. Mark and S. Luke. And why should not apistein be, (as it is,) one of them?

(3.) Note, next, that this word is used twice, and in the course of his last chapter too, also by S. Luke. Nowhere else does it occur in the Gospels. It is at least as strange that the word apistein should be found twice in the last chapter of the Gospel according to S. Luke, as in the last chapter of the Gospel according to S. Mark. And if no shadow of suspicion is supposed to result from this circumstance in the case of the third Evangelist, why should it in the case of the second?

(4.) But, lastly, the noun apistia (which occurs in S. Mark xvi.14) occurs in two other places of the same Gospel. And this word (which S. Matthew uses twice,) is employed by none of the other Evangelists. -- What need to add another word? Do not many of these supposed suspicious circumstances, -- this one for example, -- prove rather, on closer inspection, to be confirmatory facts?

(IX.) We are next assured that meta tauta (ver.12) |is not found in Mark, though many opportunities occurred for using it.|

(1.) I suppose that what this learned writer means, is this; that if S. Mark had coveted an opportunity for introducing the phrase meta tauta earlier in his Gospel, he might have found one. (More than this cannot be meant: for nowhere before does S. Mark employ any other phrase to express |after these things,| or |after this,| or |afterwards.|)

But what is the obvious inference from the facts of the case, as stated by the learned Critic, except that the blessed Evangelist must be presumed to have been unconscious of any desire to introduce the expression under consideration on any other occasion except the present?

(2.) Then, further, it is worth observing that while the phrase meta tauta occurs five times in S. Luke's Gospel, it is found only twice in the Acts; while S. Matthew never employs it at all. Why, then, -- I would respectfully inquire -- why need S. Mark introduce the phrase more than once? Why, especially, is his solitary use of the expression to be represented as a suspicious circumstance; and even perverted into an article of indictment against the genuineness of the last twelve verses of his Gospel? |Would any one argue that S. Luke was not the author of the Acts, because the author of the Acts has employed this phrase only twice, -- often as he could have used it?' (Meyer's phrase here .)|

(X.) Another objection awaits us.-Heteros also |is unknown to Mark,| says Dr. Davidson; -- which only means that the word occurs in chap. xvi.12, but not elsewhere in his Gospel.

It so happens, however, that heteros also occurs once only in the Gospel of S. John. Does it therefore throw suspicion on S. John xix.37?

(XI.) The same thing is said of husteron (in ver.14) viz. that it |occurs nowhere| in the second Gospel.

But why not state the case thus? -- Husteron, a word which is twice employed by S. Luke, occurs only once in S. Mark and once in S. John. -- That would be the true way of stating the facts of the case. But it would be attended with this inconvenient result, -- that it would make it plain that the word in question has no kind of bearing on the matter in hand.

(XII.) The same thing he says of bla'ptein (in ver.18).

But what is the fact? The word occurs only twice in the Gospels, -- viz. in S. Mark xvi.18 and S. Luke iv.35. It is one of the eighty-four words which are peculiar to S. Mark and S. Luke. What possible significancy would Dr. Davidson attach to the circumstance?

(XIII.) Once more. -- |pantachou| (proceeds Dr. Davidson) |is unknown to Mark;| which (as we begin to be aware) is the learned gentleman's way of stating that it is only found in chap. xvi.20.

Tischendorf, Tregelles, and Alford insist that it also occurs in S. Mark i.28. I respectfully differ from them in opinion: but when it has been pointed out that the word is only used besides in S. Luke ix.6, what can be said of such Criticism but that it is simply frivolous?

(XIV. and XV.) Yet again: -- sunergein and bebaioun are also said by the same learned Critic to be |unknown to Mark.|

S. Mark certainly uses these two words only once, -- viz. in the last verse of the present Chapter: but what there is suspicious in this circumstance, I am at a loss even to divine. He could not have used them oftener; and since one hundred and fifty-six words are peculiar to his Gospel, why should not sunergein and bebaioun be two of them?

(XVI.) |Pasa ktisis is Pauline,| proceeds Dr. Davidson, (referring to a famous expression which is found in ver.15.)

(1.) All very oracular, -- to be sure: but why pasa ktisis should be thought |Pauline| rather than |Petrine,| I really, once more, cannot discover; seeing that S. Peter has the expression as well as S. Paul .

(2.) In this place, however, the phrase is pasa he ktisis. But even this expression is no more to be called |Pauline| than |Marcine;| seeing that as S. Mark uses it once and once only, so does S. Paul use it once and once only, viz. in Rom. viii.22.

(3.) In the meantime, how does it come to pass that the learned Critic has overlooked the significant fact that the word ktisis occurs besides in S. Mark x.6 and xiii.19; and that it is a word which S. Mark alone of the Evangelists uses? Its occurrence, therefore, in this place is a circumstance the very reverse of suspicious.

(4.) But lastly, inasmuch as the opening words of our Lord's Ministerial Commission to the Apostles are these, -- keru'xate to` euange'lion pa'se te kti'sei (ver.15): inasmuch, too, as S. Paul in his Epistle to the Colossians (i.23) almost reproduces those very words; speaking of the Hope tou? euangeli'ou . . . tou keruchthe'ntos en pa'se kti'sei te upo` to`n ourano'n:| -- Is it not an allowable conjecture that a direct reference to that place in S. Mark's Gospel is contained in this place of S. Paul's Epistle? that the inspired Apostle |beholding the universal tendency of Christianity already realized,| announces (and from imperial Rome!) the fulfilment of his Lord's commands in his Lord's own words as recorded by the Evangelist S. Mark?

I desire to be understood to deliver this only as a conjecture. But seeing that S. Mark's Gospel is commonly thought to have been written at Rome, and under the eye of S. Peter; and that S. Peter (and therefore S. Mark) must have been at Rome before S. Paul visited that city in A.D.61; -- seeing, too, that it was in A.D.61-2 (as Wordsworth and Alford are agreed) that S. Paul wrote his Epistle to the Colossians, and wrote it from Rome; -- I really can discover nothing unreasonable in the speculation. If, however, it be well founded, -- (and it is impossible to deny that the coincidence of expression may be such as I have suggested,) -- then, what an august corroboration would this be of |the last Twelve Verses of the Gospel according to S. Mark!| . . . If, indeed, the great Apostle on reaching Rome inspected S. Mark's Gospel for the first time, with what awe will he have recognised in his own recent experience the fulfilment of his Saviour's great announcement concerning the |signs which should follow them that believe!| Had he not himself |cast out devils?| -- |spoken with tongues more than they all?| -- and at Melita, not only |shaken off the serpent into the fire and felt no harm,| but also |laid hands on the sick| father of Publius, |and he had recovered?| . . . To return, however, to matters of fact; with an apology (if it be thought necessary) for what immediately goes before.

(XVII.) Next, -- en to ono'mati' mou (ver.17) is noticed as another suspicious peculiarity. The phrase is supposed to occur only in this place of S. Mark's Gospel; the Evangelist elsewhere employing the preposition epi: -- (viz. in ix.37: ix.39: xiii.6.)

(1.) Now really, if it were so, the reasoning would be nugatory. S. Luke also once, and once only, has en to ono'mati' mou: his usage elsewhere being, (like S. Mark's) to use epi. Nay, in two consecutive verses of ch. ix, en to onomati mou -- sou is read: and yet, in the very next chapter, his Gospel exhibits an unique instance of the usage of en. Was it ever thought that suspicion is thereby cast on S. Luke x.17?

(2.) But, in fact, the objection is an oversight of the learned (and generally accurate) objector. The phrase recurs in S. Mark ix.33, -- as the text of that place has been revised by Tischendorf, by Tregelles and by himself. This is therefore a slightly corroborative, not a suspicious circumstance.

(XVIII. and XIX.) We are further assured that parakolouthein (in ver.17) and epakolouthein (in ver.20) |are both foreign to the diction of Mark.|

(1.) But what can the learned author of this statement possibly mean? He is not speaking of the uncompounded verb akolouthein, of course; for S. Mark employs it. at least twenty times. He cannot be speaking of the compounded verb; for sunakolouthein occurs in S. Mark v.37. He cannot mean that parakolouthein, because the Evangelist uses it only once, is suspicious; for that would be to cast a slur on S. Luke i.3. He cannot mean generally that verbs compounded with prepositions are |foreign to the diction of Mark;| for there are no less than forty-two such verbs which are even peculiar to S. Mark's short Gospel, -- against thirty which are peculiar to S. Matthew, and seventeen which are peculiar to S. John. He cannot mean that verbs compounded with para and epi have a suspicious look; for at least thirty-three such compounds, (besides the two before us,) occur in his sixteen chapters . What, then, I must really ask, can the learned Critic possibly mean? -- I respectfully pause for an answer.

(2.) In the meantime, I claim that as far as such evidence goes, -- (and it certainly goes a very little way, yet, as far as it goes,) -- it is a note of S. Mark's authorship, that within the compass of the last twelve verses of his Gospel these two compounded verbs should be met with.

(XX.) Dr. Davidson points out, as another suspicious circumstance, that (in ver.18) the phrase cheiras epitithenai epi tina occurs; |instead of cheiras epitithenai tina.|

(1.) But on the contrary, the phrase |is in Mark's manner,| says Dean Alford: the plain fact being that it occurs no less than three times in his Gospel, -- viz. in chap. viii.25: x.16: xvi.18. (The other idiom, he has four times .) Behold, then, one and the same phrase is appealed to as a note of genuineness and as an indication of spurious origin. What can be the value of such Criticism as this?

(2.) Indeed, the phrase before us supplies no unapt illustration of the precariousness of the style of remark which is just now engaging our attention. Within the space of three verses, S. Mark has both expressions, -- viz. epithei`s ta`s cheiras auto (viii.23) and also epe'theke ta`s cheiras epi' (ver.25.) S. Matthew has the latter phrase once; the former, twice . Who will not admit that all this (so-called) Criticism is the veriest trifling; and that to pretend to argue about the genuineness of a passage of Scripture from such evidence as the present is an act of rashness bordering on folly? . . . The reader is referred to what was offered above on Art. VII.

(XXI. and XXII.) Again: the words me`n oun -- ho Kurios (ver.19 and ver.20) are also declared to be |foreign to the diction of Mark.| I ask leave to examine these two charges separately.

(1.) me`n oun occurs only once in S. Murk's Gospel, truly: but then it occurs only once in S. Luke (iii.18); -- only twice in S. John (xix.24: xx.30): -- in S. Matthew, never at all. What imaginable plea can be made out of such evidence as this, for or against the genuineness of the last Twelve Verses of S. Mark's Gospel? -- Once more, I pause for an answer.

(2.) As for ho Kurios being |foreign to the diction of Mark in speaking of the Lord,| -- I really do not know what the learned Critic can possibly mean; except that he finds our Lord nowhere called ho Kurios by S. Mark, except in this place.

But then, he is respectfully reminded that neither does he find our Lord anywhere called by S. Mark |Jesus Christ,| except in chap. i.1. Are we, therefore, to suspect the beginning of S. Mark's Gospel as well as the end of it? By no means, (I shall perhaps be told:) a reason is assignable for the use of that expression in chap. i.1. And so, I venture to reply, there is a fully sufficient reason assignable for the use of this expression in chap. xvi.19 .

(3.) By S. Matthew, by S. Mark, by S. John, our Lord is called Iesous Christos, -- but only in the first Chapter of their respective Gospels. By S. Luke nowhere. The appellation may, -- or may not, -- be thought |foreign to the diction| of those Evangelists. But surely it constitutes no reason whatever why we should suspect the genuineness of the beginning of the first, or the second, or the fourth Gospel.

(4.) S. John three times in the first verse of his first Chapter designates the Eternal Son by the extraordinary title ho Logos; but nowhere else in his Gospel, (except once in ver.14,) does that Name recur. Would it be reasonable to represent this as a suspicious circumstance? Is not the Divine fitness of that sublime appellation generally recognised and admitted ? -- Surely, we come to Scripture to be learners only: not to teach the blessed Writers how they ought to have spoken about God! When will men learn that |the Scripture-phrase, or language of the Holy Ghost | is as much above them as Heaven is above Earth?

(XXIII.) Another complaint: -- analephthenai, which is found in ver.19, occurs nowhere else in the Gospels.

(1.) True. S. Mark has no fewer than seventy-four verbs which |occur nowhere else in the Gospels:| and this happens to be one of them? What possible inconvenience can be supposed to follow from that circumstance?

(2.) But the remark is unreasonable. Analephthenai and analepsis are words proper to the Ascension of our Lord into Heaven. The two Evangelists who do not describe that event, are without these words: the two Evangelists who do describe it, have them . Surely, these are marks of genuineness, not grounds for suspicion!

It is high time to conclude this discussion. -- Much has been said about two other minute points: --

(XXIV.) It is declared that ekeinos |is nowhere found absolutely used by S. Mark:| (the same thing may be said of S. Matthew and of S. Luke also:) |but always emphatically: whereas in verses 10 and 11, it is absolutely used .| Another writer says, -- |The use of ekeinos in verses 10, 11, and 13 (twice) in a manner synonymous with ho de, is peculiar .|

(1.) Slightly peculiar it is, no doubt, but not very, that an Evangelist who employs an ordinary word in the ordinary way about thirty times in all, should use it |absolutely| in two consecutive verses.

(2.) But really, until the Critics can agree among themselves as to which are precisely the offending instances, -- (for it is evidently a moot point whether ekeinos be emphatic in ver.13, or not,) -- we may be excused from a prolonged discussion of such a question. I shall recur to the subject in the consideration of the next Article (XXV.)

(XXV.) So again, it may be freely admitted that |in the 10th and 14th verses there are sentences without a copulative: whereas Mark always has the copulative in such cases, particularly kai.| But then, --

(1.) Unless we can be shewn at least two or three other sections of S. Mark's Gospel resembling the present, -- (I mean, passages in which S. Mark summarizes many disconnected incidents, as he does here,) -- is it not plain that such an objection is wholly without point?

(2.) Two instances are cited. In the latter, (ver.14), Lachmann and Tregelles read husteron de and the reading is not impossible. So that the complaint is really reduced to this, -- That in ver.10 the Evangelist begins Ekei'ne poreutheisa, instead of saying kai ekei'ne poreutheisa. And (it is implied) there is something so abhorrent to probability in this, as slightly to strengthen the suspicion that the entire context is not the work of the Evangelist.

(3.) Now, suppose we had S. Mark back among us: and suppose that he, on being shewn this objection, were to be heard delivering himself somewhat to the following effect: -- |Aye. But men may not find fault with that turn of phrase. I derived it from Simon Peter's lips. I have always suspected that it was a kind of echo, so to say, of what he and the other Disciple' had many a time rehearsed in the hearing of the wondering Church concerning the Magdalene on the morning of the Resurrection.| And then we should have remembered the familiar place in the fourth Gospel: --

gunai ti klaieis; tina zeteis; EKEINE dokousa k.t.l. X.

After which, the sentence would not have seemed at all strange, even though it be |without a copulative:| --

aph' hes ekbeblekei epta` daimo'nia. EKEINE poreutheisa k.t.l.

(4.) For after all, the only question to be asked is, -- Will any one pretend that such a circumstance as this is suspicious? Unless that be asserted, I see not what is gained by raking together, -- (as one easily might do in any section of any of the Gospels,) -- every minute peculiarity of form or expression which can possibly be found within the space of these twelve verses. It is an evidence of nothing so much as an incorrigible coarseness of critical fibre, that every slight variety of manner or language should be thus pounced. upon and represented as a note of spuriousness, -- in the face of (a) the unfaltering tradition of the Church universal that the document has never been hitherto suspected: and (b) the known proclivity of all writers, as free moral and intellectual agents, sometimes to deviate from their else invariable practice. -- May I not here close the discussion?

There will perhaps be some to remark, that however successfully the foregoing objections may seem to have been severally disposed of, yet that the combined force of such a multitude of slightly suspicious circumstances must be not only appreciable, but even remain an inconvenient, not to say a formidable fact. Let me point out that the supposed remark is nothing else but a fallacy; which is detected the instant it is steadily looked at.

For if there really had remained after the discussion of each of the foregoing XXV Articles, a slight residuum of suspiciousness, then of course the aggregate of so many fractions would have amounted to something in the end.

But since it has been proved that there is absolutely nothing at all suspicious in any of the alleged circumstances which have been hitherto examined, the case becomes altogether different. The sum of ten thousand nothings is still nothing . This may be conveniently illustrated by an appeal to the only charge which remains to be examined.

(XXVI. and XXVII.) The absence from these twelve verses of the adverbs eutheos and palin, -- (both of them favourite words with the second Evangelist,) -- has been pointed out as one more suspicious circumstance. Let us take the words singly: --

(a) The adverb eutheos (or euthus) is indeed of very frequent occurrence in S. Mark's Gospel. And yet its absence from chap. xvi is proved to be in no degree a suspicious circumstance, from the discovery that though it occurs as many as

12 times in chap. i;
and 6 | chap. v;
and 5 | chap. iv, vi;
and 3 | chap. ii, ix, xiv;
and 2 | chap. xi;
it yet occurs only 1 | chap. iii, viii, x, xv; while it occurs | chap. xii, xiii, xvi.

(b) In like manner, palin, which occurs as often as

6 times in chap. xiv;
and 5 | chap. x;
and 3 | chap. viii, xv;
and 2 | chap. ii, vii, xi, xii;
and 1 | chap. iv, v;
occurs | chap. i, vi, ix, xiii. xvi.

(1.) Now, -- How can it possibly be more suspicious that palin should be absent from the last twelve verses of S. Mark, than that it should be away from the first forty-five?

(2.) Again. Since eutheos is not found in the xii^th or the xiii^th chapters of this same Gospel, -- nor palin in the i^st, vi^th, ix^th, or xiii^th chapter, -- (for the sufficient reason that neither word is wanted in any of those places,) -- what possible |suspiciousness| can be supposed to result from the absence of both words from the xvi^th chapter also, where also neither of them is wanted? Why is the xvi^th chapter of S. Mark's Gospel, -- or rather, why are |the last twelve verses| of it, -- to labour under such special disfavor and discredit?

(3.) Dr. Tregelles makes answer, -- |I am well aware that arguments on style are often very fallacious, and that by themselves they prove very little: but when there does exist external evidence, and when internal proofs as to style, manner, verbal expression, and connection, are in accordance with such independent grounds of forming a judgment; then these internal considerations possess very great weight .| -- For all rejoinder, the respected writer is asked, -- (a) But when there does not exist any such external evidence: what then? Next, he is reminded (b) That whether there does, or does not, it is at least certain that not one of those |proofs as to style,| &c., of which he speaks, has been able to stand the test of strict examination. Not only is the precariousness of all such Criticism as has been brought to bear against the genuineness of S. Mark xvi.9-20 excessive, but the supposed facts adduced in evidence have been found out to be every one of them mistakes; -- being either, (1) demonstrably without argumentative cogency of any kind; -- or else, (2) distinctly corroborative and confirmatory circumstances: indications that this part of the Gospel is indeed by S. Mark, -- not that it is probably the work of another hand.

And thus the formidable enumeration of twenty-seven grounds of suspicion vanishes out of sight: fourteen of them proving to be frivolous and nugatory; and thirteen, more of less clearly witnessing in favour of the section .

III. Of these thirteen expressions, some are even eloquent in their witness. I am saying that it is impossible not to be exceedingly struck by the discovery that this portion of the Gospel contains (as I have explained already) so many indications of S. Mark's undoubted manner. Such is the reference to hektisis (in ver.15): -- the mention of apistia (in ver.14): -- the occurrence of the verb poreuesthai (in ver.10 and 12), -- of the phrase en to ono'mati' mou (in ver.17), -- and of the phrase cheiras epitithenai epi tina (in ver.18): -- of the Evangelical term for our Lord's Ascension, viz. anele'phthe (in ver.19): -- and lastly, of the compounds parakolouthein and epakolouthein (in verses 17 and 20.)

To these Thirteen, will have to be added all those other notes of identity of authorship, -- such as they are, -- which result from recurring identity of phrase, and of which the assailants of this portion of the Gospel have prudently said nothing. Such are the following: --

(xiv.) Anistanai, for rising from the dead; which is one of S. Mark's words. Taking into account the shortness of his Gospel, he has it thrice as often as S. Luke; twelve times as often as S. Matthew or S. John.

(xv.) The idiomatic expression poreuome'nois eis agro'n, of which S. Matthew does not present a single specimen; but which occurs three times in the short Gospel of S. Mark , -- of which ver.12 is one.

(xvi.) The expression proi' (in ver.9,) -- of which S. Mark avails himself six times: i.e. (if the length of the present Gospel be taken into account) almost five times as often as either S. Matthew or S. John, -- S. Luke never using the word at all. In his first chapter (ver.35), and here in his last (ver.2), S. Mark uses li'an in connexion with proi'.

(xvii.) The phrase keru'ssein to` euange'lion (in ver.15) is another of S. Mark's phrases. Like S. Matthew, he employs it four times (i.14: xiii.10: xiv.9: xvi.15): but it occurs neither in S. Luke's nor in S. John's Gospel.

(xviii.) The same words singly are characteristic of his Gospel. Taking the length of their several narratives into account, S. Mark has the word keru'ssein more than twice as often as S. Matthew: three times as often as S. Luke.

(xix.) euange'lion, -- a word which occurs only in the first two Gospels, -- is found twice as often in S. Mark's as in S. Matthew's Gospel: and if the respective length of their Gospels be considered, the proportion will be as three to one. It occurs, as above stated, in ver.15.

(xx.) If such Critics as Dr. Davidson had been concerned to vindicate the genuineness of this section of the Gospel, we should have been assured that phanerousthai is another of S. Mark's words: by which they would have meant no more than this, -- that though employed neither by S. Matthew nor by S. Luke it is used thrice by S. Mark, -- being found twice in this section (verses 12, 14), as well as in ch. iv.22.

(xxi.) They would have also pointed out that sklerokardia is another of S. Mark's words: being employed neither by S. Luke nor by S. John, -- by S. Matthew only once, -- but by S. Mark on two occasions; of which ch. xvi.14 is one.

(xxii.) In the same spirit, they would have bade us observe that pantachou (ver.20) -- unknown to S. Matthew and S. John, and employed only once by S. Luke, -- is twice used by S. Mark; one instance occurring in the present section.

Nor would it have been altogether unfair if they had added that the precisely similar word pantachothen (or pantothen) is only found in this same Gospel, -- viz. in ch. i.45.

(xxiii.) They would further have insisted (and this time with a greater show of reason) that the adverb kalos (which is found in ver.18) is another favorite word with S. Mark: occurring as it does, (when the length of these several narratives is taken into account,) more than twice as often in S. Mark's as in S. John's Gospel, -- just three times as often as in the Gospel of S. Matthew and S. Luke.

(xxiv.) A more interesting (because a more just) observation would have been that echein, in the sense of |to be,| (as in the phrase kalos echein, ver.18,) is characteristic of S. Mark. He has it oftener than any of the Evangelists, viz. six times in all (ch. i.32; 34: ii.17: v.23: vi.55: xvi.18.) Taking the shortness of his Gospel into account, he employs this idiom twice as often as S. Matthew; -- three times as often as S. John; -- four times as often as S. Luke.

(xxv.) They would have told us further that arrhostos is another of S. Mark's favorite words: for that he has it three times, -- viz. in ch. vi.5, 13, and here in ver.18. S. Matthew has it only once. S. Luke and S. John not at all.

(xxvi.) And we should have been certainly reminded by them that the conjunction of penthousi kai` klai'ousi (in ver.10) is characteristic of S. Mark, -- who has klai'ontas kai` alala'zontas in ch. v.38: thorubeisthe kai` klai'ete in the very next verse. As for penthein, it is one of the 123 words common to S. Matthew and S. Mark, and peculiar to their two Gospels.

(xxvii.) Lastly, |katakrino (in ver.16), instead of krino, is Mark's word, (comp. x.33: xiv.64).| The simple verb which is used four times by S. Matthew, five times by S. Luke, nineteen times by S. John, is never at all employed by S. Mark: whereas the compound verb he has oftener in proportion than S. Matthew, -- more than twice as often as either S. Luke or S. John.

Strange, -- that there should be exactly |xxvii| notes of genuineness discoverable in these twelve verses, instead of |XXVII| grounds of suspicion!

But enough of all this. Here, we may with advantage review the progress hitherto made in this inquiry.

I claim to have demonstrated long since that all those imposing assertions respecting the |Style| and |Phraseology| of this section of the Gospel which were rehearsed at the outset , -- are destitute of foundation, But from this discovery alone there results a settled conviction which it will be found difficult henceforth to disturb. A page of Scripture which has been able to endure so severe au ordeal of hostile inquiry, has been proved to be above suspicion. That character is rightly accounted blameless which comes out unsullied after Calumny has done her worst; done it systematically; done it with a will; done it for a hundred years.

But this is not an adequate statement of the facts of the case in respect of the conclusion of S. Mark's Gospel. Something more is certain than that the charges which have been so industriously brought against this portion of the Gospel are without foundation. It has been also proved that instead of there being discovered twenty-seven suspicious words and phrases scattered up and down these twelve verses of the Gospel, there actually exist exactly as many words and phrases which attest with more or less certainty that those verses are nothing else but the work of the Evangelist.

IV. And now it is high time to explain that though I have hitherto condescended to adopt the method of my opponents, I have only done so in order to show that it proves fatal to themselves. I am, to say the truth, ashamed of what has last been written, -- so untrustworthy do I deem the method which, (following the example of those who have preceded me in this inquiry,) I have hitherto pursued. The |Concordance test,| -- (for that is probably as apt and intelligible a designation as can be devised for the purely mechanical process whereby it is proposed by a certain school of Critics to judge of the authorship of Scripture,) -- is about the coarsest as well as about the most delusive that could be devised. By means of this clumsy and vulgar instrument, especially when applied, (as in the case before us,) without skill and discrimination, it would be just as easy to prove that the first twelve verses of S. Mark's Gospel are of a suspicious character as the last . In truth, except in very skilful hands, it is no test at all, and can only mislead.

Thus, (in ver.1,) we should be informed (i.) that |Mark nowhere uses the appellation Jesus Christ:| and (ii.) that |euangelion Iesou Christou| is |Pauline.| -- We should be reminded (iii.) that this Evangelist nowhere introduces any of the Prophets by name, and that therefore the mention of |Isaiah | (in ver.2) is a suspicious circumstance: -- (iv.) that a quotation from the Old Testament is |foreign to his manner,| -- (for writers of this class would not hesitate to assume that S. Mark xv.28 is no part of the Gospel;) -- and (v.) that the fact that here are quotations from two different prophets, betrays an unskilful hand. -- (vi.) Because S. Mark three times calls Judaea by its usual name (Ioudaia, viz. in iii.7: x.1: xiii.14), the unique designation, e Ioudai'a cho'ra (in ver.5) would be pronounced decisive against |the authorship of Mark.| -- (vii.) The same thing would be said of the unique expression, en Iorda'ne potamo, which is found in ver.5, -- seeing that this Evangelist three times designates Jordan simply as Iorda'nes (i.9: iii.8: x.1). -- (viii.) That entire expression in ver.7 (unique, it must be confessed, in the Gospel,) hou ouk eimi` ikano`s -- upodema'ton autou, would be pronounced |abhorrent to the style of Mark.| -- (ix.) to` Pneuma, twice, (viz. in ver.10 and ver.12) we should be told is never used by the Evangelist absolutely for the Holy Ghost: but always to` Pneuma to` Hagion, (as in ch. iii.29; xii.36: xiii.11). -- (x.) The same would be said of oi Hierosolumitai (in ver.5) for |the inhabitants of Jerusalem:| we should be assured that S. Mark's phrase would rather be hoi apo` Hierosolu'mon, -- as in ch. iii.8 and 22. -- And (xi.) the expression pisteu'ete en to euangeli'o (ver.15), we should be informed |cannot be Mark's;| -- who either employs eisand the accusative (as in ch. ix.92), or else makes the verb take a dative (as in ch. xi.31: xvi.13, 14.) -- We should also probably be told that the ten following words are all |unknown to Mark:| -- (xii.) triches, -- (xiii.) dermatine, -- (xiv.) osphus, -- (xv.) akrides, -- (xvi.) meli, (xvii.) agrios (six instances in a single verse (ver.6): a highly suspicious circumstance!), -- (xviii.) kuptein, -- (xix.) himas, (xx.) hupodemata (all three instances in ver.7!) -- (xxi.) eudokein, -- (xxii.) kai` ege'neto . . . elthen, (ver.9), -- unique in S. Mark! -- (xxiii.) baptizesthai eis (ver 9), another unique phrase! -- (xxiv.) hoi ouranoi twice, (viz. in verses 10, 11) yet elsewhere, when S. Mark speaks of Heaven, (ch. vi.41: vii.34: viii.11: xvi.19) he always uses the singular. -- Lastly, (xxv.) the same sorry objection which was brought against the |last twelve verses,| (that palin, a favourite adverb with S. Mark, is not found there,) is here even more conspicuous.

Turning away from all this, -- (not, however, without an apology for having lingered over such frivolous details so long,) -- I desire to point out that we have reverently to look below the surface, if we would ascertain how far it is to be presumed from internal considerations whether S. Mark was indeed the author of this portion of his Gospel, or not.

V. We must devise, I say, some more delicate, more philosophical, more real test than the coarse, uncritical expedient which has been hitherto considered of ascertaining by reference to the pages of a Greek Concordance whether a certain word which is found in this section of the Gospel is, or is not, used elsewhere by S. Mark. And I suppose it will be generally allowed to be deserving of attention, -- in fact, to be a singularly corroborative circumstance, -- that within the narrow compass of these Twelve Verses we meet with every principal characteristic of S. Mark's manner: -- Thus,

(i.) Though he is the Author of the shortest of the Gospels, and though to all appearance he often merely reproduces what S. Matthew has said before him, or else anticipates something, which is afterwards delivered by S. Luke, -- it is surprising how often we are indebted to S. Mark for precious pieces of information which we look for in vain elsewhere. Now, this is a feature of the Evangelist's manner which is susceptible of memorable illustration from the section before us.

How many and how considerable are the new circumstances which S. Mark here delivers! -- (1) That Mary Magdalene was the first to behold the risen Saviour: (2) That it was He who had cast out from her the |seven devils:| (3) How the men were engaged to whom she brought her joyful message, -- (4) who not only did not believe her story, but when Cleopas and his companion declared what had happened to themselves, |neither believed they them.| (5) The terms of the Ministerial Commission, as set down in verses 15 and 16, are unique. (6) The announcement of the |signs which should follow them that believe| is even extraordinary. Lastly, (7) this is the only place in the Gospel where The Session at the right Hand of God is recorded. . . . So many, and such precious incidents, showered into the Gospel Treasury at the last moment, and with such a lavish hand, must needs have proceeded if not from an Apostle at least from a companion of Apostles. , if we had no other token to go by, there could not be a reasonable doubt that this entire section is by no other than S. Mark himself!

(ii.) A second striking characteristic of the second Evangelist is his love of picturesque, or at least of striking details, -- his proneness to introduce exceedingly minute particulars, often of the profoundest significancy, and always of considerable interest. Not to look beyond the Twelve Verses (chap. i.9-20) which were originally proposed for comparison, -- We are reminded (a) that in describing our Saviour's Baptism, it is only S. Mark who relates that |He came from Nazareth| to be baptized. -- (b) In his highly elliptical account of our Lord's Temptation, it is only he who relates that |He was with the wild beasts.| -- (c) In his description of the Call of the four Disciples, S. Mark alone it is who, (notwithstanding the close resemblance of his account to what is found in S. Matthew,) records that the father of S. James and S. John was left |in the ship with the hired servants .| -- Now, of this characteristic, we have also within these twelve verses, at least four illustrations: --

(a) Note in ver.10, that life-like touch which evidently proceeded from an eye-witness, -- |penthousi kai` klai'ousi.| S. Mark relates that when Mary conveyed to the Disciples the joyous tidings of the Loan's Resurrection, she found them overwhelmed with sorrow, -- |mourning and weeping.|

(b) Note also that the unbelief recorded in ver.13 is recorded only there.

(c) Again. S. Mark not only says that as the two Disciples were |going into the country,| (poreuome'nois eis agro'n , ver.12,) Jesus also |went with them| -- (sun-eporeueto, as S. Luke relates;) -- but that it was as they actually |walked| along (peripatousin) that this manifestation took place.

(d) Among the marvellous predictions made concerning |them that believe;| what can be imagined more striking than the promise that they should |take up serpents;| and suffer no harm even if they should |drink any deadly thing|?

(iii) Next, -- all have been struck, I suppose, with S. Mark's proneness to substitute some expression of his own for what he found in the Gospel of his predecessor S. Matthew: or, when he anticipates something which is afterwards met with in the Gospel of S. Luke, his aptness to deliver it in language entirely independent of the later Evangelist. I allude, for instance; to his substitution of epibalo`n e'klaie (xiv.72) for S. Matthew's e'klausen pikros (xxvi.75); -- and of o te'kton (vi.3) for o tou te'ktonos uio's (S. Matth. xiii.55). -- The |woman of Canaan| in S. Matthew's Gospel (gune` Chananai'a, ch. xv.22), is called |a Greek, a Syrophenician by nation| in S. Mark's (Helleni`s, Surophoini'ssa to ge'nei, ch. vii.26). -- At the Baptism, |instead of the |opened| heavens of S. Matthew (aneo'chthesan, ch. iii.16) and S. Luke (aneochthenai, ch. iii.22), we are presented by S. Mark with the striking image of the heavens |cleaving| or |being rent asunder| (schizome'nous , ch. i.10). -- What S. Matthew calls ta` o'ria Magadala' (ch. xv.39), S. Mark designates as ta` me're Dalmanoutha' (ch. viii.10.) -- In place of S. Matthew's zu'me Saddoukai'on, (ch. xvi.6), S. Mark has zu'me Hero'dou (ch. viii.15.) -- In describing the visit to Jericho, for the du'o tuphloi of S. Matthew (ch. xx.29), S. Mark gives uio`s Timai'ou Bartimaios o tuphlo`s . . . . prosaiton (ch. x.46.) -- For the kla'dous of S. Matth. xxi.8, S. Mark (ch. xi.8) has stoiba'das; and for the other's pri`n ale'ktora phonesai (xxvi.34), he has pri`n e` di`s (xiv.30.) -- It is so throughout.

Accordingly, -- (as we have already more than once had occasion to remark,) -- whereas the rest say only he mia ton sabbaton, S. Mark says pro'te sabba'tou (in ver.9). -- Whereas S. Luke (viii.2) says aph' es daimo'nia epta` exelelu'thei, -- S. Mark records that from her ekbeble'kei epta` daimonia. -- Very different is the great ministerial Commission as set down by S. Mark in ver.15, 16, from what is found in S. Matthew xxviii.19, 20. -- And whereas S. Luke says |their eyes were holden that they should not know Him,| S. Mark says that |He appeared to them in another form.| . . . Is it credible that any one fabricating a conclusion to S. Mark's narrative after S. Luke's Gospel had appeared, would have ventured so to paraphrase S. Luke's statement? And yet, let the consistent truthfulness of either expression be carefully noted. Both are historically accurate, but they proceed from opposite points of view. Viewed on the heavenly side, (God's side), the Disciples' |eyes| (of course) |were holden:| -- viewed on the earthly side, (Man's side), the risen Saviour (no doubt) |appeared in another form.|

(iv.) Then further, S. Mark is observed to introduce many expressions into his Gospel which confirm the prevalent tradition that it was at Rome he wrote it; and that it was with an immediate view to Latin readers that it was published. Twelve such expressions were enumerated above (at p.150-1); and such, it was also there shewn, most unmistakably is the phrase prote sabbatou in ver.9. -- It is simply incredible that any one but an Evangelist writing under the peculiar conditions traditionally assigned to S. Mark, would have hit upon such an expression as this, -- the strict equivalent, to Latin ears, for he mia to?n sabba'ton, which has occurred just above, in ver.2. Now this, it will be remembered, is one of the hacknied objections to the genuineness of this entire portion of the Gospel; -- quite proof enough, if proof were needed, of the exceeding improbability which attaches to the phrase, in the judgment of those who have considered this question the most.

(v.) The last peculiarity of S. Mark to which I propose to invite attention is supplied by those expressions which connect his Gospel with S. Peter, and remind us of the constant traditional belief of the ancient Church that S. Mark was the companion of the chief of the Apostles.

That the second Gospel contains many such hints has often been pointed out; never more interestingly or more convincingly than by Townson , in a work which deserves to be in the hands of every student of Sacred Science. Instead of reproducing any of the familiar cases in order to illustrate my meaning, I will mention one which has perhaps never been mentioned in this connexion before.

(a) Reference is made to our Lord's sayings in S. Mark vii, and specially to what is found in ver.19. That expression, |purging all meats| (kathari'zon pa'nta ta` bro'mata), does really seem to be no part of the Divine discourse; but the Evangelist's inspired comment on the Saviour's words . Our Saviour (he explains) by that discourse of His -- ipso, facto -- |made all meats clean.| How doubly striking a statement, when it is remembered that probably Simon Peter himself was the actual author of it; -- the same who, on the house-top at Joppa, had been shewn in a vision that |God had made clean| (ho Theos ekatharise ) all His creatures!

(b) Now, let a few words spoken by the same S. Peter on a memorable occasion be considered: -- |Wherefore of these men which have companied with us all the time that the Lord Jesus went in and out among us, beginning from the Baptism of John, unto that same day that He was taken up (anelephthe) from us, must one be ordained to be a witness with us of His Resurrection .| Does not S. Peter thereby define the precise limits of our Saviour's Ministry, -- shewing it to have |begun| (arxamenos) |from the Baptism of John,| -- and closed with the Day of our Lord's Ascension? And what else are those but the exact bounds of S. Mark's Gospel, -- of which the arche; (ch. i.1) is signally declared to have been the Baptism of John, -- and. the utmost limit, the day when (as S. Mark says) |He was taken up (anelephthe) into Heaven,| -- (ch. xvi.19)?

(c) I will only further remind the reader, in connexion with the phrase, pa'se te kti'sei, in ver.155, -- (concerning which, the reader is referred back to page 162-3,) -- that both S. Peter and S. Mark (but no other of the sacred writers) conspire to use the expression ap' arche?s kti'seos . S. Mark has besides kti'seos hes e'ktise o Theo`s (ch. xiii.19); while S. Peter alone styles the Almighty, from His work of Creation, ho ktistes (1 S. Pet. iv.19).

VI. But besides, and over and above such considerations as those which precede, -- (some of which, I am aware, might be considerably evacuated of their cogency; while others, I am just as firmly convinced, will remain forcible witnesses of God's Truth to the end of Time,) -- I hesitate not to avow my personal conviction that abundant and striking evidence is garnered up within the brief compass of these Twelve Verses that they are identical in respect of fabric with the rest of the Gospel; were clearly manufactured out of the same Divine materials, -- wrought in the same heavenly loom.

It was even to have been expected, from what is found to have been universally the method in other parts of Scripture, -- (for it was of course foreseen by Almighty God from the beginning that this portion of His Word would be, like its Divine Author, in these last days cavilled at, reviled, hated, rejected, denied,) -- that the Spirit would not leave Himself without witness in this place. It was to have been anticipated, I say, that Eternal Wisdom would carefully -- (I trust there is no irreverence in so speaking of God and His ways!) -- would carefully make provision: meet the coming unbelief (as His Angel met Balaam) with a drawn sword: plant up and down throughout these Twelve Verses of the Gospel, sure indications of their Divine Original, -- unmistakable notes of purpose and design, -- mysterious traces and tokens of Himself; not visible indeed to the scornful and arrogant, the impatient and irreverent; yet clear as if written with a sunbeam to the patient and. humble student, the man who |trembleth at God's Word .| Or, (if the Reader prefers the image,) the indications of a Divine Original to be met with in these verses shall be likened rather to those cryptic characters, invisible so long as they remain unsuspected, but which shine forth clear and strong when exposed to the Light or to the Heat; (Light and Heat, both emblems of Himself!) so that even he that gropeth in darkness must now see them, and admit that of a truth |the Lord is in this place| although he |knew it not!|

(i.) I propose then that in the first instance we compare the conclusion of S. Mark's Gospel with the beginning of it. We did this before, when our object was to ascertain whether the Style of S. Mark xvi.9-20 be indeed as utterly discordant from that of the rest of the Gospel as is commonly represented. We found, instead, the most striking resemblance . We also instituted a brief comparison between the two in order to discover whether the Diction of the one might not possibly be found as suggestive of verbal doubts as the diction of the other: and so we found it . -- Let us for the third time draw the two extremities of this precious fabric into close proximity in order again to compare them. Nothing I presume can be fairer than to elect that, once more, our attention be chiefly directed to what is contained within the twelve verses (ver.9-20) of S. Mark's first chapter which exactly correspond with the twelve verses of his last chapter (ver.9-20) which are the subject of the present volume.

Now between these two sections of the Gospel, besides (1) the obvious verbal resemblance, I detect (2) a singular parallelism of essential structure. And this does not strike me the less forcibly because nothing of the kind was to have been expected.

(1.) On the verbal coincidences I do not propose to lay much stress. Yet are they certainly not without argumentative weight and significancy. I allude to the following: --

(a) [bapti'zon, ba'ptisma (i.4) -- kai` ebapti'zonto (i.5) -- eba'ptisa, bapti'sei (i.8)] -- kai` ebapti'sthe (i.9)

(a) baptistheis

(b) [kerusson, ekerusse (i.7)]

(b) ekeruxan (xvi.20)

(b and c) keru'sson to` euange'lion, (i.14) -- [arche` tou euangeli'ou (i.1)]

(c) keru'xate to` euange'lion (xvi.15

(c and d) pisteu'ete en to euangeli'o (i.15)

(d) epi'stesan (xvi.11) -- oude` epi'steusan (xvi.13) -- te`n apisti'an, ouk epi'steusan (xvi.14) -- o pisteu'sas, o apiste'sas (xvi.16) -- tois pisteu'sasi (xvi.17.)

Now this, to say the least, shews that there exists an unmistakable relation of sympathy between the first page of S. Mark's Gospel and the last. The same doctrinal phraseology , -- the same indications of Divine purpose, -- the same prevailing cast of thought is observed to occur in both. (i.) A Gospel to be everywhere preached; -- (ii.) Faith, to be of all required; -- (iii.) Baptism to be universally administered; (|one Lord, one Faith, one Baptism:|) -- Is not this the theme of the beginning of S. Mark's Gospel as well as of the end of it? Surely it is as if on comparing the two extremities of a chain, with a view to ascertaining whether the fabric be identical or not, It were discovered that those extremities are even meant to clasp!

(2.) But the essential parallelism between S. Mark xvi.9-20 and S. Mark i.9-20 is a profounder phenomenon and deserves even more attention. I proceed to set down side by side, as before, what ought to require neither comment nor explanation of mine. Thus we find, --

(A) in ch. i.9 to 11: -- Our Lord's Manifestation to the World epiphaneia on His |coming up (anabainon) out of the water| of Jordan: (having been |buried by Baptism,| as the Apostle speaks:) when the Voice from Heaven proclaimed, -- |Thou art My beloved Son in whom I am well pleased.|

(A) in ch. xvi.9 to 11: -- Our Lord's appearance to Mary Magdalene (epha'ne) after His Resurrection (anastas) from Death: (of which God had said, |Thou art My Son, this day have I begotten Thee.|

-- -- 12 to 14: -- Two other Manifestations (ephanero'the) to Disciples.

(B) -- -- 12, 13: -- Christ's victory over Satan; (whereby is fulfilled the promise |Thou shalt tread upon the lion and adder: the young lion and the dragon shalt Thou trample under feet.|)

(B) -- -- 17, 18: -- Christ's promise that |they that believe| |shall cast out devils| and |shall take up serpents:| (as [in S. Luke x.19] He had given the Seventy |power to tread on serpents and scorpions, and over all the power of the Enemy.|)

[(C) -- -- 8: -- The Pentecostal Gift foretold: |He shall baptize you with the Holy Ghost.|]

(C) -- -- 17: -- The chief Pentecostal Gift specified: |They shall speak with new tongues.|

(D) in ch. i.14, 15: -- Christ |comes into Galilee, preaching the Gospel . . . . and saying . . . . Repent ye, and believe the Gospel.|

(D) in ch. xvi.15, 16: -- He commands His Apostles to |go into all the world and preach the Gospel to every creature. He that believeth and is baptized shall be saved.|

(E) -- -- 15: His announcement, that |The time is fulfilled, and the Kingdom of God is at hand.|

(E) -- -- 19: -- S. Mark's record concerning Him, that |He was received up into Heaven, and sat on the right hand of God:| (where He must reign till He hath put all enemies under His feet.|)

(F) -- -- 16 to 20: -- The four Apostles' Call to the Ministry: (which [S. Luke v.8, 9] is miraculously attested.)

(F) -- -- 20: -- The Apostles' Ministry, which is everywhere miraculously attested, -- |The Lord working with them, and confirming the word by the signs that followed.|

It is surely not an unmeaning circumstance, a mere accident, that the Evangelist should at the very outset and at the very conclusion of his Gospel, so express himself! If, however, it should seem to the Reader a mere matter of course, a phenomenon without interest or significancy, -- nothing which I could add would probably bring him to a different mind.

(3.) Then, further: when I scrutinize attentively the two portions of Scripture thus proposed for critical survey, I am not a little struck by the discovery that the VIth Article of the ancient Creed of Jerusalem (A.D.348) is found in the one: the Xth Article, in the other . If it be a purely fortuitous circumstance, that two cardinal verities like these, -- (viz. |He ascended into Heaven, and sat down at the Right Hand of God,| -- and |One Baptism for the Remission of sins,|) should be found at either extremity of one short Gospel, -- I will but point out that it is certainly one of a very remarkable series of fortuitous circumstances. -- But in the thing to be mentioned next, there neither is, nor can be, any talk of fortuitousness at all.

(4.) Allusion is made to the diversity of Name whereby the Son of Man is indicated in these two several places of the Gospel; which constitutes a most Divine circumstance, and is profoundly significant. He who in the first verse (S. Mark i.1) was designated by the joint title |Iesous| and |Christos,| -- here, in the last two verses (S. Mark xvi.19, 20) is styled for the first and for the last time, |Ho KURIOS| -- the Lord .

And why? Because He who at His Circumcision was named |Jesus,| (a Name which was given Him from His Birth, yea, and before His Birth); He who at His Baptism became |the Christ,| (a Title which belonged to His Office, and which betokens His sacred Unction); -- the same, on the occasion of His Ascension into Heaven and Session at the Right Hand of God, -- when (as we know) |all power had been given unto Him in Heaven and in Earth| (S. Matth. xxviii.18), -- is designated by His Name of Dominion; |the Lord| Jehovah . . . |Magnifica et opportuna appellatio!| -- as Bengel well remarks.

But I take leave to point out that all this is what never either would or could have entered into the mind of a fabricator of a conclusion to S. Mark's unfinished Gospel. No inventor of a supplement, I say, could have planted his foot in this way in exactly the right place. The proof of my assertion is twofold: --

(a) First, because the present indication that the Holy Ghost was indeed the Author of these last Twelve Verses is even appealed to by Dr. Davidson and his School, as a proof of a spurious original. Verily, such Critics do not recognise the token of the Divine Finger even when they see it!

(b) Next, as a matter of fact, we have a spurious Supplement to the Gospel, -- the same which was exhibited above at p.123-4; and which may here be with advantage reproduced in its Latin form: -- |Omnia autem quaecumque praecepta erant illis qui cum Petro erant, breviter exposuerunt. Post haec et ipso Iesus adparuit, et ab oriente usque in occidentem misit per illos sanctam et incorruptam praedicationem salutis aeternae. Amen .| -- Another apocryphal termination is found in certain copies of the Thebaic version. It occupies the place of ver.20, and is as follows: -- |Exeuntes terni in quatuor climata caeli praedicarunt Evangelium in mundo toto, Christo operante cum iis in verbo confirmationem cum signis sequentibus eos et miraculis. Atque hoc modo cognitum est regnum Dei iu terra tota et in mundo toto Israelis in testimonium gentium omnium harum quae exsistunt ab oriente ad occasum.| It will be seen that the Title of Dominion (ho Kurios -- the Lord) is found in neither of these fabricated passages; but the Names of Nativity and of Baptism (Iesous and Christos -- Jesus and Christ) occur instead.

(ii.) Then further: -- It is an extraordinary note of genuineness that such a vast number of minute but important facts should be found accumulated within the narrow compass of these twelve verses; and should be met with nowhere else. The writer, -- supposing that he had only S. Matthew's Gospel before him, -- traverses (except in one single instance) wholly new ground; moves forward with unmistakable boldness and a rare sense of security; and wherever he plants his foot, it is to enrich the soil with fertility and beauty. But on the supposition that he wrote after S. Luke's and S. John's Gospel had appeared, -- the marvel becomes increased an hundred-fold: for how then does it come to pass that he evidently draws his information from quite independent sources? is not bound by any of their statements? even seems purposely to break away from their guidance, and to adventure some extraordinary statement of his own, -- which nevertheless carries the true Gospel savour with it; and is felt to be authentic from the very circumstance that no one would have ever dared to invent such a detail and put it forth on his own responsibility?

(iii.) Second to no indication that this entire section of the Gospel has a Divine original, I hold to be a famous expression which (like prote sabbatou) has occasioned general offence: I mean, the designation of Mary Magdalene as one |out of whom| the Lord |had cast seven devils;| and that, in immediate connexion with the record of her august privilege of being the first of the Human Race to behold His risen form. There is such profound Gospel significancy, -- such sublime improbability, -- such exquisite pathos in this record, -- that I would defy any fabricator, be he who he might, to have achieved it. This has been to some extent pointed out already .

(iv.) It has also been pointed out, (but the circumstance must be by all means here insisted upon afresh,) that the designation (found in ver.10) of the little company of our Lord's followers, -- |tois met' autou genome'nois,| -- is another rare note of veracious origin. No one but S. Mark, -- or just such an one as he, -- would or could have so accurately designated the little band of Christian men and women who, unconscious of their bliss, were |mourning and weeping| till after sunrise on the first Easter Day. The reader is reminded of what has been already offered on this subject, at p.155-6.

(v.) I venture further to point out that no writer but S. Mark, (or such an one as he ), would have familiarly designated the Apostolic body as |autois tois e'ndeka,| in ver.14. The phrase hoi dodeka, he uses in proportion far oftener than any other two of the Evangelists . And it is evident that the phrase hoi hendeka soon became an equally recognised designation of the Apostolic body, -- |from which Judas by transgression fell.| Its familiar introduction into this place by the second Evangelist is exactly what one might have looked for, or at least what one is fully prepared to meet with, in him.

(vi.) I will close this enumeration by calling attention to an unobtrusive and unobserved verb in the last of these verses which (I venture to say) it would never have entered into the mind of any ordinary writer to employ in that particular place. I allude to the familiar word exelthontes.

The precise meaning of the expression, -- depending on the known force of the preposition with which the verb is compounded, -- can scarcely be missed by any one who, on the one hand, is familiar with the Evangelical method; on the other, is sufficiently acquainted with the Gospel History. Reference is certainly made to the final departure of the Apostolic body out of the city of Jerusalem . And tacitly, beyond a question, there is herein contained a recollection of our Saviour's command to His Apostles, twice expressly recorded by S. Luke, |that they should not depart from Jerusalem, but wait for the promise of the Father.| |Behold,| (said He,) |I send the promise of My Father upon you: but tarry ye in the city of Jerusalem, until ye be endued with power from on high .| . . . After many days |they went forth,| or |out.| S. Mark, (or perhaps it is rather S. Peter,) expressly says so, -- exelthontes. Aye, and that was a memorable |outgoing,| truly! What else was its purpose but the evangelization of the World?

VII. Let this suffice, then, concerning the evidence derived from Internal considerations. But lest it should hereafter be reckoned as an omission, and imputed to me as a fault, that I have said nothing about the alleged Inconsistency of certain statements contained in these |Twelve Verses| with the larger notices contained in the parallel narratives of S. Luke and S. John, -- I proceed briefly to explain why I am silent on this head.

1. I cannot see for whom I should be writing; in other words, -- what I should propose to myself as the end to be attained by what I wrote. For,

2. What would be gained by demonstrating, -- (as I am of course prepared to do,) -- that there is really no inconsistency whatever between anything which S. Mark here says, and what the other Evangelists deliver? I should have proved that, -- (assuming the other Evangelical narratives to be authentic, i.e. historically true,) -- the narrative before us cannot be objected to on the score of its not being authentic also. But by whom is such proof required?

(a) Not by the men who insist that errors are occasionally to be met with in the Evangelical narratives. In their estimation, the genuineness of an inspired writing is a thing not in the least degree rendered suspicious by the erroneousness of its statements. According to them, the narrative may exhibit inaccuracies and inconsistencies, and may yet be the work of S. Mark. If the inconsistencies be but |trifling,| and the inaccuracies |minute,| -- these |sound Theologians,| (for so they style themselves ,) |have no dread whatever of acknowledging| their existence. Be it so. Then would it be a gratuitous task to set about convincing them that no inconsistency, no inaccuracy is discoverable within the compass of these Twelve concluding Verses.

(b) But neither is such proof required by faithful Readers; who, for want of the. requisite Scientific knowledge, are unable to discern the perfect Harmony of the Evangelical narratives in this place. It is only one of many places where a prima facie discrepancy, though it does not fail to strike, -- yet (happily) altogether fails to distress them. Consciously or unconsciously, such readers reason with themselves somewhat as follows: -- |God's Word, like all God's other Works, (and I am taught to regard God's Word as a very masterpiece of creative skill;) -- the blessed Gospel, I say, is full of difficulties. And yet those difficulties are observed invariably to disappear under competent investigation. Can I seriously doubt that if sufficient critical skill were brought to bear on the highly elliptical portion of narrative contained in these Twelve Verses, it would present no exception to a rule which is observed to be else universal; and that any apparent inconsistency between S. Mark's statements in this place, and those of S. Luke and S. John, would also be found to be imaginary only?|

This then is the reason why I abstain from entering upon a prolonged Inquiry, which would in fact necessitate a discussion of the Principles of Gospel Harmony, -- for which the present would clearly not be the proper place.

VIII. Let it suffice that, in the foregoing pages, --

1. I have shewn that the supposed argument from |Style,| (in itself a highly fallacious test,) disappears under investigation.

It has been proved (pp.142-5) that, on the contrary, the style of S. Mark xvi.9-20 is exceedingly like the style of S. Mark i.9-20; and therefore, that it is rendered probable by the Style that the Author of the beginning of this Gospel was also the Author of the end of it.

2. I have further shewn that the supposed argument from |Phraseology,| -- (in itself, a most unsatisfactory test; and as it has been applied to the matter in hand, a very coarse and clumsy one;) -- breaks down hopelessly under severe analysis.

Instead of there being twenty-seven suspicious circumstances in the Phraseology of these Twelve Verses, it has been proved (pp.170-3) that in twenty-seven particulars there emerge corroborative considerations.

3. Lastly, I have shewn that a loftier method of Criticism is at hand; and that, tested by this truer, more judicious, and more philosophical standard; a presumption of the highest order is created that these Verses must needs be the work of S. Mark.

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