They spread garments and branches on the road (Mk 11:8-11:8)

“Many people

Spread their garments

On the road.

Others spread

Leafy branches

That they had cut

In the fields.”

 

καὶ πολλοὶ τὰ ἱμάτια αὐτῶν ἔστρωσαν εἰς τὴν ὁδόν, ἄλλοι δὲ στιβάδας, κόψαντες ἐκ τῶν ἀγρῶν.

 

Both Matthew, chapter 21:8, and Luke, chapter 19:36, are similar but with slight differences.  Mark said that instead of crowds, it was many people (καὶ πολλοὶ) that spread out their outer garments, cloaks, or coats on the road (τὰ ἱμάτια αὐτῶν ἔστρωσαν εἰς τὴν ὁδόν).  Meanwhile, others were cutting down leafy branches from the surrounding fields (ἄλλοι δὲ στιβάδας, κόψαντες ἐκ τῶν ἀγρῶν), also spreading out these branches on the road.  This event has become the great Palm Sunday celebration, the triumphant entrance of Jesus into Jerusalem.  Actually, only John, chapter 12:13, called these palm branches.  This idea of laying garments on the road can be found in 2 Kings, chapter 9:13, to protect the feet of the king.  Clearly, this was an attempt to connect Jesus with the Davidic kingship.  Was Jesus to be the new king of Israel as a son of David?

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Bethphage (Mk 11:1-11:1)

“When they were

Approaching Jerusalem,

At Bethphage

And Bethany,

Near the Mount of Olives,

Jesus sent

Two of his disciples.

 

Καὶ ὅτε ἐγγίζουσιν εἰς Ἱεροσόλυμα εἰς Βηθφαγὴ καὶ Βηθανίαν πρὸς τὸ ὄρος τῶν Ἐλαιῶν, ἀποστέλλει δύο τῶν μαθητῶν αὐτοῦ

 

Both Matthew, chapter 21:1, and Luke, chapter 19:29, are almost word for word to what is here.  Mark said that when they got near to Jerusalem (Καὶ ὅτε ἐγγίζουσιν εἰς Ἱεροσόλυμα), Jesus then sent out two of his disciples (ἀποστέλλει δύο τῶν μαθητῶν αὐτοῦ).  They were staying at Bethphage (εἰς Βηθφαγὴ), a village on the way from Jericho to Jerusalem, and Bethany (καὶ Βηθανίαν), about a mile and a half east of Jerusalem. near the Mount of Olives (πρὸς τὸ ὄρος τῶν Ἐλαιῶν), not far from Jerusalem.

The blind beggar Bartimaeus (Mk 10:46-10:46)

“They came to Jericho.

As Jesus

With his disciples

And a large crowd

Were leaving Jericho,

Bartimaeus,

The son of Timaeus,

A blind beggar,

Was sitting

By the roadside.”

 

Καὶ ἔρχονται εἰς Ἰερειχώ. Καὶ ἐκπορευομένου αὐτοῦ ἀπὸ Ἰερειχὼ καὶ τῶν μαθητῶν αὐτοῦ καὶ ὄχλου ἱκανοῦ ὁ υἱὸς Τιμαίου Βαρτιμαῖος, τυφλὸς προσαίτης, ἐκάθητο παρὰ τὴν ὁδόν.

 

Both Matthew, chapter 20:29, and Luke, chapter 18:35, have something similar, but with some differences.  Luke had Jesus entering or approaching Jericho, not leaving it, as Matthew and Mark indicate.  Mark said that Jesus had come to Jericho (Καὶ ἔρχονται εἰς Ἰερειχώ).  However, he was leaving Jericho (Καὶ ἐκπορευομένου αὐτοῦ ἀπὸ Ἰερειχὼ) with his disciples (καὶ τῶν μαθητῶν αὐτοῦ) and a large crowd (καὶ ὄχλου ἱκανοῦ), when this incident occurred.  Jericho was about 15 miles east of Jerusalem and about 8 miles north of the Dead Sea.  Jesus was getting closer to Jerusalem, but not quite there.  Mark is the only gospel writer that named this blind beggar Bartimaeus (Βαρτιμαῖος), the son of Timaeus, even with the name of his father (ὁ υἱὸς Τιμαίου).  Bartimaeus was a blind beggar (τυφλὸς προσαίτης), sitting by the way or the roadside (ἐκάθητο παρὰ τὴν ὁδόν).  On the other hand, Matthew had 2 unnamed blind beggars, while Luke only had 1 unnamed blind beggar.

The things to come (Mk 10:33-10:34)

“Jesus said.

‘See!

We are going up

To Jerusalem.

The Son of man

Will be handed over

To the chief priests

And the Scribes.

They will condemn him

To death.

Then they will

Hand him over

To the gentiles.

They will mock him.

They will spit upon him.

They will flog him.

They will kill him.

After three days,

He will rise again.’”

 

ὅτι Ἰδοὺ ἀναβαίνομεν εἰς Ἱεροσόλυμα, καὶ ὁ Υἱὸς τοῦ ἀνθρώπου παραδοθήσεται τοῖς ἀρχιερεῦσιν καὶ τοῖς γραμματεῦσιν, καὶ κατακρινοῦσιν αὐτὸν θανάτῳ καὶ παραδώσουσιν αὐτὸν τοῖς ἔθνεσιν

καὶ ἐμπαίξουσιν αὐτῷ καὶ ἐμπτύσουσιν αὐτῷ καὶ μαστιγώσουσιν αὐτὸν καὶ ἀποκτενοῦσιν, καὶ μετὰ τρεῖς ἡμέρας ἀναστήσεται.

 

Matthew, chapter 20:18-19, and Luke, chapter 18:32-33, have something similar to this, almost word for word.  This would be the 3rd prediction of Jesus’ suffering, death, and resurrection.  Yet this is the most descriptive explanation.  Mark said that Jesus told his trusted 12 leaders that they were going up to Jerusalem (ὅτι Ἰδοὺ ἀναβαίνομεν εἰς Ἱεροσόλυμα).  There the Son of Man would be handed over to the chief priests and the Scribes (καὶ ὁ Υἱὸς τοῦ ἀνθρώπου παραδοθήσεται τοῖς ἀρχιερεῦσιν καὶ τοῖς γραμματεῦσιν), with no mention of the Pharisees or Sadducees.  These chief priests and Scribes were going to condemn him to death (καὶ κατακρινοῦσιν αὐτὸν εἰς θανάτῳ).  They would, in turn, hand him over to the gentiles (καὶ παραδώσουσιν αὐτὸν τοῖς ἔθνεσιν), meaning the Romans.  While this first part was almost word for word with Matthew, there was a change of vocabulary in the second verse.  Then they would mock or ridicule him (καὶ ἐμπαίξουσιν αὐτῷ).  They would spit on him (καὶ ἐμπτύσουσιν αὐτῷ).  They would flog or scourge him (καὶ μαστιγώσουσιν αὐτὸν).  Finally, they would kill him (καὶ ἀποκτενοῦσιν), but there was no mention of a crucifixion, as in Matthew.  After three days (καὶ μετὰ τρεῖς ἡμέρας), he would rise again (ἀναστήσεται).  Obviously, Jesus was talking about himself, but he always used the term Son of Man.

The camel and the eye of the needle (Mk 10:25-10:25)

“It is easier

For a camel

To go through

The eye of a needle

Than for a rich person

To enter

The kingdom of God.”

 

εὐκοπώτερόν ἐστιν κάμηλον διὰ τῆς τρυμαλιᾶς τῆς ῥαφίδος διελθεῖν ἢ πλούσιον εἰς τὴν βασιλείαν τοῦ Θεοῦ εἰσελθεῖν.

 

This saying about the camel and the eye of a needle can be found in Matthew, chapter 19:24, and Luke, chapter 18:25, almost word for word.  Mark indicated that Jesus said that it would be easier (εὐκοπώτερόν ἐστιν) for a camel to go or pass through the eye of a needle (κάμηλον διὰ τῆς τρυμαλιᾶς τῆς ῥαφίδος διελθεῖν), that was used for sewing, than for a wealthy rich man to enter the kingdom of God (ἢ πλούσιον εἰς τὴν βασιλείαν τοῦ Θεοῦ εἰσελθεῖν).  This was a follow up to the obstacles of wealth.  Everyone knew that it would be impossible for a camel to go through a sewing needle eye or a needle opening.  There was no needle gate in Jerusalem, since this was about a sewing needle.

 

Jesus goes to Judea (Mk 10:1-10:1)

“Jesus left that place.

He went

To the region

Of Judea,

And beyond

The Jordan.

Crowds again

Gathered around him.

As was his custom,

He again taught them.”

 

Καὶ ἐκεῖθεν ἀναστὰς ἔρχεται εἰς τὰ ὅρια τῆς Ἰουδαίας καὶ πέραν τοῦ Ἰορδάνου, καὶ συνπορεύονται πάλιν ὄχλοι πρὸς αὐτόν, καὶ ὡς εἰώθει πάλιν ἐδίδασκεν αὐτούς.

 

This move from Galilee to Judea can also be found in Matthew, chapter 19:1-2, and Luke, chapter 9:51.  Mark said that Jesus rose up and left that place (Καὶ ἐκεῖθεν ἀναστὰς), presumably Galilee.  He went to the region of Judea (ἔρχεται εἰς τὰ ὅρια τῆς Ἰουδαίας) and beyond the Jordan (καὶ πέραν τοῦ Ἰορδάνου).  Thus, Jesus moved south towards Jerusalem.  However, he traveled on the other eastern side of the Jordan River, so that he did not have to go into Samaria.  He definitely was leaving Galilee.  Mark, like Matthew, emphasized the crowds that gathered around Jesus again (καὶ συνπορεύονται πάλιν ὄχλοι πρὸς αὐτόν).  Just as in Galilee, as was his custom (καὶ ὡς εἰώθει), Jesus again began to teach (πάλιν ἐδίδασκεν αὐτούς), the people in these crowds in Judea.  Mark had Jesus teaching the crowds instead of healing these people, as in Matthew.

Pluck out your eye (Mk 9:47-9:47)

“If your eye

Causes you

To stumble,

Tear it out!

It is better

For you

To enter

The kingdom of God

With one eye

Than to have

Two eyes

To be thrown into hell.”

 

καὶ ἐὰν ὁ ὀφθαλμός σου σκανδαλίζῃ σε, ἔκβαλε αὐτόν· καλόν σέ ἐστιν μονόφθαλμον εἰσελθεῖν εἰς τὴν βασιλείαν τοῦ Θεοῦ, ἢ δύο ὀφθαλμοὺς ἔχοντα βληθῆναι εἰς τὴν γέενναν

 

This saying about it being better to be blind in one eye can also be found in Matthew, chapter 18:9, almost word for word.  This warning was almost the same as the warning about the stumbling hand and foot.  Jesus then spoke about the problem of wandering eyes.  Mark indicated that Jesus said that if your eye causes you to stumble or sin (καὶ ἐὰν ὁ ὀφθαλμός σου σκανδαλίζῃ σε), cast it out, gouge it out, or pluck it out (ἔκβαλε αὐτόν).  It would be better for you to enter the kingdom of God (εἰσελθεῖν εἰς τὴν βασιλείαν τοῦ Θεοῦ) blind in one eye or one eyed (καλόν σέ ἐστιν μονόφθαλμον) than to have two eyes (ἢ δύο ὀφθαλμοὺς) but thrown into Gehenna or hell (ἔχοντα βληθῆναι εἰς τὴν γέενναν).  The Greek word for hell “γέενναν” or the English Gehenna was based on the Hebrew word Gehinnom.  That was the name of the valley south of Jerusalem where burning child sacrifices would take place.  You were better off with one eye than being in these hell fires with two eyes.  Whatever, the temptation, stumbling block or snare was, get rid of it, even if it is your eye.  This message was clear.  One eyed, one foot, or one hand was better than eternal fire.