Luke indicated that Jesus remarked that whatever they had said in the dark (ἀνθ’ ὧν ὅσα ἐν τῇ σκοτίᾳ εἴπατε) would be heard in the light (ἐν τῷ φωτὶ ἀκουσθήσεται). What they have whispered in the ear behind closed doors (καὶ ὃ πρὸς τὸ οὖς ἐλαλήσατε ἐν τοῖς ταμείοις) would be proclaimed from the housetops (κηρυχθήσεται ἐπὶ τῶν δωμάτων). This is similar to Matthew, chapter 10:27, indicating a Q source. Matthew indicated that Jesus told his disciples that he told them in the dark (ὃ λέγω ὑμῖν ἐν τῇ σκοτίᾳ), they were to utter and tell it in the light (εἴπατε ἐν τῷ φωτί). Whatever they heard whispered in their ear (καὶ ὃ εἰς τὸ οὖς ἀκούετε), they were to proclaim it from the housetops (κηρύξατε ἐπὶ τῶν δωμάτων). They were to proclaim the good news loud and clear in the light of day. Do you let people know about what you have heard secretly?
There is something similar to this in Matthew, chapter 26:2, where Jesus predicted to his disciples that he would be handed over and crucified, as well as in chapter 26:4, where the chief priests and the elders, not the Scribes, wanted to kill Jesus. In Luke, chapter 22:2, it was the chief priests and the Scribes as here in Mark. For Mark, this was the fulfillment of Psalm 10:8, where they sat in ambush to murder the innocent one. Mark said that these chief priests (οἱ ἀρχιερεῖς) and the Scribes (καὶ οἱ γραμματεῖς) were looking (καὶ ἐζήτουν) for a way to deceitfully or secretly seize Jesus (πῶς αὐτὸν ἐν δόλῳ κρατήσαντες). They wanted to kill him (ἀποκτείνωσιν).
This is almost word for word to Mark, chapter 14:1-2, and somewhat similar to Luke, chapter 22:2. Matthew said that these elders and priests conspired or plotted (καὶ συνεβουλεύσαντο) to arrest Jesus (ἵνα τὸν Ἰησοῦν κρατήσωσιν) and kill him (καὶ ἀποκτείνωσιν·) by some secret deceitful trick (δόλῳ). However, they did not want to do it during the Passover festival (ἔλεγον δέ Μὴ ἐν τῇ ἑορτῇ). They were afraid that there might be a disturbing riot among the people (ἵνα μὴ θόρυβος γένηται ἐν τῷ λαῷ). What made them change their minds?
Then Herod (Ἡρῴδης) secretly called (λάθρᾳ καλέσας) the magi (τοὺς μάγους). It is not clear why he had to do this secretly, since they seem to have publicly went to him. He wanted to know from them (ἠκρίβωσεν παρ’ αὐτῶν) the exact time (τὸν χρόνον) when this star had first appeared (τοῦ φαινομένου ἀστέρος). This was an attempt by Herod to figure out when this new king was born.
These colorful gods have carpenters who smooth out their tongues. These gods are overlaid with gold or silver, but they are still false since they cannot speak. They even have golden crowns on their heads. These gods are like young girls who love pretty ornaments. Sometimes, their priests secretly take the gold or silver from their gods to spend it on themselves. They may even give some of it to the local street or temple prostitutes. They dress up their gods with various garments to make them look more human. Thus they have gods made of silver, gold, or wood that are colorful but useless.
Johanan toke Governor Gedaliah aside and spoke to him secretly. He wanted permission to kill Ishmael before he was able to kill the new governor. He said that no would have to know about it. Why should Governor Gedaliah die? If he died, then all the Judeans gathered at Mizpah would scatter. The small remnant of Judeans there would all die. However, Governor Gedaliah responded to Johanan in no uncertain terms. Johanan was not to kill Ishmael, because this story about the plot to kill him was a lie. Thus Governor Gedaliah dismissed the warning against his life.
“Meanwhile Judas, who was also called Maccabeus, and his companions secretly entered the villages. They summoned their kindred. They enlisted those who had continued in the Jewish faith. They gathered about six thousand men. They implored the Lord to look upon the people who were oppressed by all. They wanted the Lord to have pity on the temple which had been profaned by ungodly men. They wanted him to have mercy on the city that was being destroyed, and about to be leveled to the ground. They wanted the Lord to hearken to the blood that cried out to him. They wanted him to remember also the lawless destruction of the innocent babies. They wanted him to remember the blasphemies committed against his name. They wanted him to show his hatred of evil.”
Judas Maccabeus and his companions, and not just his brothers, entered the villages. There is no mention of Mattathias, the father of Judas, as if nothing happened until Judas came on the scene. This is the first mention of Judas in chapter 8, outside of the author’s preface in chapter 2 of this book. In 1 Maccabees, Judas came on the scene in chapter 3, after the death of his father, who had started the uprising. Judas gathered about 6,000 men. The first thing they did was pray to the Lord. They wanted God to look on their oppression and have pity on the Temple and its profanation. They wanted mercy for their city Jerusalem that was being leveled to the ground. They wanted God to listen to the innocent blood crying out to him from innocent babies. They wanted him to remember the blasphemies against his name and all the other evils that was going on.
“Others who had assembled in the caves nearby in order to observe the seventh day secretly were betrayed to Philip. They were all burned together, because their piety kept them from defending themselves, in view of their regard for that most holy day.”
This is a reference to an incident that is somewhat the same in 1 Maccabees, chapter 2 about people who would not fight on the Sabbath. There was no indication of Phillip in 1 Maccabees, but the idea is the same, the refusal to fight on the Sabbath. Here they were burned for merely observing the Sabbath, while in the other story they were hiding in the wilderness. Thus we have Jewish martyrs for the cause of the Sabbath.
“When King Shalmaneser died, his son King Sennacherib reigned in his place. The highways into Media became unsafe, so that I could no longer go into Media. In the days of King Shalmaneser, I performed many acts of charity to my kindred. I would give my food to the hungry. I would give my clothing to the naked. If I saw the dead body of any of my people thrown out behind the wall of Nineveh, I would bury it. I also buried anyone that King Sennacherib put to death, in those days of judgment, when they came fleeing from Judea because of his blasphemies. In his anger, King Sennacherib put to death many Israelites, but I would secretly remove the bodies and bury them. So when King Sennacherib looked for them, he could not find them.”
Apparently, things were pretty good when King Shalmaneser (727-722 BCE) was in charge. When he died, things deteriorated so that the roads were not safe. When King Shalmaneser was alive, Tobit was active in charitable works of feeding the hungry and clothing the naked. He also began burying the dead outside the walls of Nineveh. However, things changed under King Sennacherib (689-681 BCE). He was killing Israelites when he was angry. Tobit began burying the dead Israelites.