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Mark Chapter One


I. Content of the Chapter


The Beginning of the Gospel of Jesus Christ

A.   The beginning of Jesus Christ’s being introduced ---- the ministry of the forerunner, John the Baptist (v.1-8);

B.   The beginning of Jesus Christ’s being accepted ---- His baptism (v.9-11);

C.   The beginning of Jesus Christ’s triumph ---- His being tempted (v.12-13);

D.   The beginning of Jesus Christ’s preaching the gospel ---- His messages (v.14-15);

E.   The beginning of Jesus Christ’s calling the disciples ---- His first disciples (v.16-20);


The Beginning of the Service of the Bondservant and the Savior

A.   His teaching ---- as one having authority (v.21-22);

B.   His power ---- even the unclean spirits obey Him (v.23-28);

C.   The regions of His service:

1.  From the house of Simon (v.29-30);

2.  The whole city was gathered together before Him (v.32-34).

3.  Throughout all Galilee (v.35-39);

D.   The example of His service ---- He cleaned the leprosy (v.40-45);


II. Verse by Verse commentary

Mark. 1:1The beginning of the gospel of Jesus Christ, the Son of God.”

YLT: ”A beginning of the good news of Jesus Christ, Son of God.

Meaning of Words: “Jesus”: Jehovah the savior, the salvation of Jehovah; “Christ”: the anointed one; “gospel”: good news, a good message; “beginning”: first, the outset;

Literal Meaning: “the Son of God”, the substance of this book is that Jesus Christ is “the Son of God” (see 1:11; 3:11; 5:7; 9:7; 14:61; 15:39), therefore He has the divine power to heal the diseases and cast off the devil and perform signs or miracles.

“Jesus Christ”, “Jesus”, the name indicates that He is Jehovah Himself who came to be our savior to grant us God’s salvation. The name “Christ” shows that He was anointed by God with the Holy Spirit (Luke. 4:18, Dan. 9:26) and was separated unto God to be the king and the priest of the kingdom of God, and was sent into the world to fulfill God’s plan and accomplish His will.

 “Jesus” is the name of him in humility; “Christ” is the name of His being honored by men. He humbled Himself at first, and was then highly exalted (see Phil. 2: 6-11).

The beginning of the gospel of Jesus Christ”, “the gospel of Jesus Christ”, it carries two meanings: (1) the gospel that is of Jesus Christ; (2) the gospel concerning Jesus Christ.

The beginning of the gospel”, it also contains two meanings: (1) the preparing work of John the Baptist is the beginning of the gospel of Jesus Christ; (2) What is recorded in the whole book of the gospel of Mark is the beginning of the gospel of Jesus Christ.


Mark. 1:2 “As it is written in the Prophets: "Behold, I send My messenger before Your face, Who will prepare Your way before You."”

YLT: “As it hath been written in the prophets, `Lo, I send My messenger before thy face, who shall prepare thy way before thee,' --”

Meaning of Words: prepare”: to construct, create;

The Background: when the king in the old times was on a tour of inspection, there were a group of people being sent forward to prepare the way by crying and cheering. If the road was rugged or crooked, they had to make the road straight before the king came. 

Literal Meaning: as it is written in the Prophets”, the words in the next quotation marks ---- the first sentence is quoted from the Book of Malachi (3:1), and the other one from the Book of Isaiah (40:3). Therefore, there is no mention of the name “Isaiah” in some old scriptures.

  I send My messenger before Your face, Who will prepare Your way before You.” ---- “I” refers to God; “My messenger” refers to John the Baptist. “You” speaks of Jesus Christ.

Enlightenment in the Word:

1)    The primary work of the servant of the Lord is to prepare the way for the Lord. Every work that has not given increasing places to the Lord in men is not the work of serving the Lord

2)    The way of the Lord is neither the rigid doctrines, nor customs, nor methods, nor systems, but the “men” like us. If “man” is right, the Lord will have His way.


Mark. 1:3 “"The voice of one crying in the wilderness: "Prepare the way of the LORD; Make His paths straight."'”

YLT: “`A voice of one calling in the wilderness, Prepare ye the way of the Lord, straight make ye his paths,' --”

Meaning of Words: “prepare”: provide, make ready for; “way”: mode, means; “straight”: forthwith, immediately; “path”: a rut or worn track;

Literal Meaning:prepare the way of the Lord, make His paths straight”, it shows that the mission of John the Baptist is to prepare the way for the Lord ------ to make men’s heart turn to God so that the Lord can enter men’s heart through straight paths and reign in them. Note that the way of the Lord” and “His paths do not refer to the “paths of righteousness” (Ps. 23:3) which we should walk in after we have believed the Lord.

Enlightenment in the Word:

1)    Voice fleets and vanishes without a trace. John was the messenger of the Lord only, without keeping anything for himself. We should bear witness of the Lord instead of ourselves.

2)    One who serves the Lord should do his utmost to bring men before the Lord without caring for his own gain, loss, status or fame, much less scheming to bring others to follow himself.

3)    “Crying” showed that John was full of burden in his heart so that he couldn’t help crying. It is the burden that makes us serve the Lord, and we shall fully pour out the burden within us. 

4)    Our heart was originally rugged and crooked. The true “repentance” is to bring one’s heart low and make one’s heart straight, i.e. “to prepare the way of the Lord, to make His paths straight”.

5)    We should not only turn to the Lord, but also let the Lord have straight path in us, so that He can fully occupy us in our heart.


Mark. 1:4 “John came baptizing in the wilderness and preaching a baptism of repentance for the remission of sins.”

YLT: “John came baptizing in the wilderness, and proclaiming a baptism of reformation -- to remission of sins,”

Meaning of Words: “came”: appear, to cause to be; “preach”: herald (as a public crier); “repentance”: compunction (for guilt, including reformation), a change of heart; “baptism”: to immerse, submerge; to make overwhelmed (i.e. fully wet);

The Background: after the forefathers of the Jews came out of Egypt, they had ever wandered in the wilderness”. Therefore, the “wilderness” in the heart of the Jews was the place where God guided them and granted grace to them.

Literal Meaning: “wilderness” lies in the dry lands of the north and west part of the Dead Sea, including the large areas of the Jordan valley.

  Preaching a baptism of repentance”, “repentance”, it does not contain any meaning of action, but the change of heart and mind. Men were originally far away from God with our back toward God, but now men should turn unto God form the inner heart.

The baptism of John was different from the baptism for Christians in the name of the Lord Jesus. The baptism for Christians emphasized on the union with the Lord, which included both the negative burial, namely, being dead with Christ together as well as the positive resurrection, namely, rising again with Christ together (Rom. 6:3-5). The baptism of John was to bring men to believe into the one who was coming after him (see v.11), which merely focused on the negative aspect ---- one’s all sins that forsook God in the past would be put over through the baptism into water. Therefore, it was also called “the baptism of repentance” (Acts. 19:3-4). “The baptism of repentance” was not being unto Christ, but the one who was baptized had changed his view towards himself. Men who came to be baptized by John confessed their sins to him. The wage of sin is death (Rom. 6:23). Therefore they declared through the baptism that they were only worthy of death.

Spiritual Meaning: “the wilderness” symbolizes the separation from the world. John the Baptist was the one who led men to repent and prepared the way of the Lord (v. 3). Therefore he stood in the place opposite to the world and made his dwelling “in the wilderness”.

“Baptism” is to plunge those who have repented entirely into the water, declaring that the one who was baptized had changed his view towards himself ---- he was only fitted to die and he was buried.

Enlightenment in the Word:

1)     We should be separated from the world so that we can bear witness of Christ (preach the baptism of repentance).

2)     If any one love the world, the love of the Father is not in him (1John. 2:15). Therefore, he who serves God has to come out of the world at first and then live a life in reliance on God by faith.

3)     John grew up in the wilderness (Luke. 1:80) and also preached in the wilderness. It showed that what he preached was in accord with his life.

4)     The repentance is not the modification of deeds, so it is not simply refusing evil and choosing good. Instead, it is the change of one’s heart and mind ---- to turn one’s heart from all the men and things outside of God to God Himself.

5)     The worst sin of men before God is the rebellious heart and the disobedience unto God. This is the “sin” that we have to confess when we are repenting. Every sin of men is out of rebelling God.

6)     If our heart only cares for the religion, reasoning, customs, and ministry only, but ignores the Lord Himself, we should repent.


Mark. 1:5 “Then all the land of Judea, and those from Jerusalem, went out to him and were all baptized by him in the Jordan River, confessing their sins.”

YLT: “and there were going forth to him all the region of Judea, and they of Jerusalem, and they were all baptized by him in the river Jordan, confessing their sins.”

Meaning of Words: “confess”: acknowledge, agree fully;

Literal Meaning: “then all the land of Judea, and those from Jerusalem, went out to”, it describes the general situation. “All” refers to many people instead of all the people. However, we could be sure that the preaching of John the Baptist had drew the attention of the masses. The reasons may be as below:

1) He had the word of God (Luke. 3:2).

2) He preached the epochal information (v.3).

3) He had distinct feature and witness of life (v.6).

  “Confessing their sins” is to confess the sin of forsaking God in their heart. All the sins of men originate from their departing from God.

Controversial Clarification: some ministers take this verse as the proof that he who truly repents should confess his sins publicly. However, since the baptism in this verse is an individual action, obviously, the confession of sins should also be an individual action. Therefore, we can not agree with the above-mentioned idea of “confessing sins publicly”. What is really important is to “confess the sins” towards God instead of men.

Enlightenment in the Word:

1)    John preached in the uninhabited wilderness, but he had attracted the attention of the masses. What really matters is not the place where one does the works of the Lord, but whether the work comes from the Lord. The work coming from the Lord will attract people’s attention.

2)    The messenger that John preached as well as his life were both simple, but he had affected the land of Judea, for his words matched with his deeds ---- what he preached was what he had experienced and done. Therefore his information was living and powerful.

3)    Those who repented came to John to do two things ---- firstly they “confessed their sins” and secondly “they were baptized by him”. Everyone who has truly repented should know that he is a sinner and he should be put to death.

4)    The confession of sins should be done before the baptism. If a man does not confess his sins or that he should die, he has never changed his view towards himself, nor repented. A baptism without repentance is only a meaningless ceremony.

5)    We should hate ourselves and feel too ashamed to show our face before God. Therefore we ask for the baptism to be buried with water.


Mark. 1:6 Now John was clothed with camel's hair and with a leather belt around his waist, and he ate locusts and wild honey.

YLT: “And John was clothed with camel's hair, and a girdle of skin around his loins, and eating locusts and honey of the field,”

The Background: the father of John the Baptist was a priest (Luke.1:8-13). Priests had to serve in the Holy Temple in Jerusalem and there were strict rules for them concerning their food and clothing (Lev.8:6-9, 10:12-15). A Jewish son usually inherited the ministry of his father. However, John lived in the wilderness and his food and clothing were totally against the rules to a priest. Therefore here he was not a priest but a prophet. That was the reason why the Lord Jesus called him “the Elias to come” (Matt.11:14). Note that the clothing of John was similar with that of Elias (2Kings.1:8). 

Spiritual Meaning: “clothes” symbolizes the walking of men (Rev. 19:8); “food” symbolizes the source of the power of life and the provision of life.

Enlightenment in the Word:

1)    The core of the information from John the Baptist was to make men repent. Therefore, he stood in a position opposite to the world and his food and clothing were different from the world. Today we Christians should not rigidly learn from John the Baptist about his food and clothing, lest we may be misunderstood as strange ones. However, we should learn from him spiritually.

2)    A camel features in kneeling down before the master to carry and take away heavy burdens and making long journeys in the wilderness with heavy burdens. We should kneel down before the Lord to receive burdens from the Lord and serve Him diligently.

3)    The servants of God should not only endure humiliation to carry out the important task but also kneel down before God to have intimate fellowship with God. The servants of God should give themselves up to prayer (Acts. 6:4). Nothing should be done before prayer.

4)    The bondsmen of the Lord should constrain their own behaviors (gird their loins) in order to serve the Lord well (Luke.12:35, 17:8). They should especially bind on humility before men (1Pet. 5:5).

5)    “With a leather belt around his waist”, it symbolizes that the cross has put our natural life to death and becomes our constraint.

6)    “Locusts and wild honey” are natural products. We should live a life by trusting in God instead of men only (1Tim. 6:17).

7)    The servants of the Lord should live a simple life instead of a luxury one, the simpler one’s food and clothing is, the more powerful one’s service to the Lord is. Today, some of the ministers lead a luxury life but offer unacceptable service to the Lord.

8)    It is the witness of the forerunner ---- he stood in an unconventional position (in “the wilderness” instead of the city), did not wear sumptuous clothes (“in camel’s hair”), constrained his behavior (“with a leather belt around his waist”) and did not rely on the provision of men (“his food was locusts and wild honey”).


Mark. 1:7 And he preached, saying, "There comes One after me who is mightier than I, whose sandal strap I am not worthy to stoop down and loose.

YLT: “and he proclaimed, saying, `He doth come -- who is mightier than I -- after me, of whom I am not worthy -- having stooped down -- to loose the latchet of his sandals;”

The Background: the Jews put on sandals without uppers when they went out, and took off the sandals when they entered their houses. One of the works of the lowest bondmen was to loose the sandal straps, take off and carry the sandals for their hosts and the guests, and then pour water into a basin to wash their feet.

Literal Meaning:there comes One after me”, it refers to Jesus Christ.

  “Whose sandal strap I am not worthy to stoop down and loose”, he thought he that he was even unworthy of being His servant.

Enlightenment in the Word:

1)    John the Baptist was the forerunner of the Lord. His duty was to bring men to repent and pointed to Christ. We should also bring men before the Lord in this way.

2)    Repentance is not the purpose, but a way that leads men to Christ (“there comes One after me”). Repentance makes men lose him, but faith enables men to obtain Christ. The former is negative, but the latter is positive. Faith must be added to those who have repented. If one has the repentance only, it still has no effect, for it only makes us notice our failure, like paying attention to the “goodness” of us in the past.

3)    Jesus Christ is the Son of God, so He has the heavenly and transcending power (“who is mightier than I”).

4)    He who serves the Lord should have the humble and gentle attitude like John the Baptist (“whose sandal strap I am not worthy to stoop down and loose”).


Mark. 1:8 I indeed baptized you with water, but He will baptize you with the Holy Spirit."

YLT: “I indeed did baptize you with water, but he shall baptize you with the Holy Spirit.'”

Literial Meaning: “I…but He…”, the sentence structure in the original especially emphasizes the contrast.

Spiritual Meaning:I indeed baptized you with water”, “baptism with water” is the mark of the ministry of John, namely, to immerse the one who has repented into the water and end his old life.

  “But He will baptize you with the Holy Spirit”, “baptism with the Holy Spirit” is the mark of the ministry of Christ, namely, to baptize those who have repented and believed the Lord with the Holy Spirit so that they will obtain the life of God and become the body of Christ ---- the church (1Cor.12:13; Acts2:2-4).

Enlightenment in the Word:

1)    The baptism with water is the end of the old life, but the baptism with the Holy Spirit is the start of the new life. The former requires repentance only, but the latter needs repentance and believing the gospel as well (see v.15).

2)    If men have not repented to receive the baptism with water, they will be suffered by the baptism with fire (see Matt.3:11-12). All those who are willing to believe and receive the baptism with water have received the baptism with the Holy Spirit at the same time (1Cor.12:13). 


Mark. 1:9 It came to pass in those days that Jesus came from Nazareth of Galilee, and was baptized by John in the Jordan.

YLT: “And it came to pass in those days, Jesus came from Nazareth of Galilee, and was baptized by John at the Jordan;”

Literal Meaning:in those days”, it referred to the time when John the Baptist baptized others at the Jordan.

  Jesus came from Nazareth of Galilee, “Galilee”, the area in the west part of the Sea of Galilee, was at that time despised by the Jews (see John 7:52). “Nazareth”, a small town between the Sea of Galilee and the Mediterranean, it was also a humble place also despised by the Jews (see John 1:46) and was the hometown of Jesus (Matt.2:23).

“And was baptized by John in the Jordan”, note that Jesus was not like others who confessed their sins (see v.5), for He had no sin. Here, that he was baptized by John indicated that He stood on the position of “men” to fulfill all the requirements of God to men.

Enlightenment in the Word:

1)    In the Gospel of John, the baptism of the Lord Jesus was not recorded because John declared that Jesus is God. The other three Gospels all recorded the baptism of the Lord, showing that He is man. Everyman should be put to death.

2)    The Lord was baptized in the Jordan. It shows that everything of man, no matter it is good or not, should be put to death at first and then be used by God.

3)    The Lord came from Nazareth of Galilee” in the Gentile place instead of Jerusalem of the Judea land. It shows that grace is not only given to the Jews, but also to the whole world.

4)    The Lord had no sins, so He had neither to repent nor being baptized. However, He was willing to stand on the position of sinners and turned unto God and confessed that men ought to be put to death. How much more shall we repent and turn to God?

5)    The Lord started His work on the earth from the baptism, which spoke of the principle of service, namely, supplying life through death.


Mark. 1:10 And immediately, coming up from the water, He saw the heavens parting and the Spirit descending upon Him like a dove.

YLT: “and immediately coming up from the water, he saw the heavens dividing, and the Spirit as a dove coming down upon him;”

Meaning of Words: immediately”: as soon as, forthwith, shortly, straightway;

Literal Meaning: coming up from the water, it showed that when He was baptized, His whole body was immersed into the water.

  He saw the heavens parting”, “the heavens parting”, it means that men are able to see the scenes in the heavens with their physical eyes (Acts. 7:56).

  The parting heavens to Him indicated that God had accepted Him. The Holy Spirit showed that God had granted Him the power of ministration.

Spiritual Meaning: “dove”, the sign of the Holy Spirit, symbolizes gentleness, meekness and simplicity of the Holy Spirit. The Spirit of God descended upon Him, showing that He is Christ (the anointed one) anointed by God with the Holy Spirit.

Enlightenment in the Word:

1)    The Lord had been baptized with water and the Holy Spirit before the assembly received the baptism of water and Spirit. It shows that all the spiritual reality and principles are firstly in the head. The full Christ is the fountain of all spiritual abundance.

2)    The heavens are only opened for those who were dead and have come to life again. If we the believers stand in the position that we were dead and have risen with the Lord together, the heavens will be opened to us in like manner.

3)    The heavens, used to be shut up because of men’s rebellion, were opened to Him for His obedience to the authority of the heavens. Then all the heavenly abundance was brought down-------the Spirit of God, the words of God and the delight of God.

4)    Since every spiritual blessing is inherited by Him, we can become partakers of the heavens and all that of the heavens through the union with Him only.

5)    We should ask the Lord to pour the Holy Spirit out upon us richly (Tit. 3:6) so that we will receive spiritual power and bear good witness of the Lord (Acts. 1:8, 2:18-21).

6)    The one who is full of the Holy Spirit will be gentle towards men like a dove and have a sincere and perfect heart towards God.

7)    The anointing oil declares the ownership of God (Lev. 8:12, 30). If we want to be possessed by God, we must go through the process of death and resurrection.


Mark. 1:11 Then a voice came from heaven, "You are My beloved Son, in whom I am well pleased."

YLT: “and a voice came out of the heavens, `Thou art My Son -- the Beloved, in whom I did delight.'”

Literal Meaning: “a voice came from heaven”, it was the voice of God our Father (2Pet. 1:17).

  “This is My beloved Son.” ---- It is God’s declaration and introduction to Jesus, showing the divinity of Jesus, who came to the world to declare God the Father (John. 1:18).

  “In whom I am well pleased.” ---- God admitted His being and His works, which made God the Father well pleased. It implies that we should hear His Son (Matt. 17:5). 

Enlightenment in the Word:

1)    Jesus is God’s beloved Son ---- son is the manifestation and declaration of the father ---- only through the Lord Jesus we could see and know God.

2)    In Christ, God is well pleased ---- if we want to please God, we should listen to the Lord only and abide in the Lord.

3)    The praise from God the Father to the Lord shows that:

a) The thirty years of life of the Lord Jesus before the baptism well pleased God.

b) The obedience of the Lord Jesus shown by the baptism was well acceptable to God.


Mark. 1:12 Immediately the Spirit drove Him into the wilderness.

YLT: “And immediately doth the Spirit put him forth to the wilderness,”

Meaning of Words: immediately”: as soon as, forthwith, shortly, straightway; “drove”: cast (forth, out), expel, send away;

Literal Meaning: both the Gospel of Matthew and the Gospel of Luke had recorded that Jesus was led up by the Spirit into the wilderness (Matt. 4:1; Luke4:1), but Mark used the word “drive”, for Mark recorded that Jesus was a bondservant. The Holy Spirit firstly descended upon Him and fully filled in Him and then “drove” Him to the wilderness.

Enlightenment in the Word:

1)    That the Holy Spirit descended upon a man was for the purpose of manifesting the works of God and making his walking in the government and guidance of God.

2)    Concerning the works of the Holy Spirit in men, they are “forbiddance” and “suffering somebody not” (Acts.16:6-7) in the negative aspect, and “driving” and “expelling” in the positive aspect.


Mark. 1:13 And He was there in the wilderness forty days, tempted by Satan, and was with the wild beasts; and the angels ministered to Him.

YLT: “and he was there in the wilderness forty days, being tempted by the Adversary, and he was with the beasts, and the messengers were ministering to him.”

Meaning of Words: Satan”: the devil, the accuser; “tempt”: try;

The Background: Moses and Elijah had abstained from food and water for forty days (Exod.34:28, 1Kings.19:8). They were the typification of the Lord who was God’s servant and prophet (Heb. 3:5, Matt. 16:14).

Literal Meaning: “and He was there in the wilderness forty days, tempted by Satan, that the Lord Jesus was tempted by the devil was driven by the Holy Spirit. Therefore, we can say that God wanted to reveal the triumph of Jesus through the temptation of the devil.

“And was with the wild beasts”, only the Book of Mark mentioned the “beasts”, it might be for the purpose of indicating that: (1) it was a place without any signs of human habitation, but an environment where had beasts only ---- He resisted the devil alone. (2) He not only prevailed over the inner temptation of Satan (see Matt.4:2-10), but also overcame the threat of Satan (namely, the fierce beasts). (3) He is the Messiah. When the kingdom of the Messiah is accomplished on the earth, the beasts will dwell with men together without hurting them (see Is.11:1-9).

“And the angels ministered to Him, angels are all ministering spirits, sent out for service on account of those who shall inherit salvation (Heb. 1:14).

Spiritual Meaning: in the Holy Bible, the number “forty” represents sufferings and trials. When the people of Israel came out of Egypt, during the forty years in the wilderness, Jehovah Elohim humbled and tried them in order to reveal that they were the chosen people of God who would keep the  commandments of God (Deut.8:1-5). Therefore, the baptism of the Lord Jesus was like the people of Israel’s passing through the Red Sea, and His forty days in the wilderness amounted to the forty years of the people of Israel in the wilderness, and that Jesus actively received the temptation of the devil meant equal to the Israel’s being humbled and tried, showing that the Lord Jesus was the true Israel, the beloved Son of God (see v.11).

Enlightenment in the Word:

1)    When we achieve a spiritual peak, the valley of test is always waiting for us ahead. Take heed that the present success can not assure the success of us all the time.

2)    The guidance of the Spirit proved that Christ was not being tested passively. He firstly took the initiative to consume all the power and doings of the enemy and then followed up the victory.

3)    The Spirit took the initiative to lead Jesus to be tempted of the devil, indicating that the Lord had firstly bound the strong and then plundered the goods (Matt. 12:29) so that He could save the world that lied in the devil.

4)    The Lord was full of the Spirit at first (Luke. 4:1) and then fought against the devil. One can win in the spiritual battles through being filled with the Holy Spirit and guided by the Holy Spirit only.

5)    The Lord’s being tempted was out of the guidance of the Spirit, so we could say that it was God that tested Him. God often puts us in temptations to test our hearts towards God.

6)    If we live by the Spirit, let us walk also by the Spirit (Gal. 5:25).

7)    For, in that himself has suffered, being tempted, the Lord is able to help those that are being tempted (Her. 2:17-18). His reaction towards temptations is an example to all believers when being tempted.

8)    The Lord was tempted in the wilderness. If the condition is difficult and helpless and has no enjoyment, the devil will come to induce us to compromise with him so that we may be comfortable immediately. 

9)    Every saint can also enjoy the ministration of the angles. When we are in difficulty, may God open our eyes to see that the angles are encamping round about us to protect us (Ps.34:7; 2King6:17)


Mark. 1:14 Now after John was put in prison, Jesus came to Galilee, preaching the gospel of the kingdom of God,

YLT: “And after the delivering up of John, Jesus came to Galilee, proclaiming the good news of the reign of God,”

Meaning of Words: “be put in prison”: to surrender, yield up;

The Background: John the Baptism was put in prison for criticizing the Herod the king that it was unlawful for Herod to have his brother’s wife Herodias (Matt. 14:3-4).

Literal Meaning: Jesus came to Galilee”, it was said that there was about one year between the 13th verse to the 14th verse. The Lord preached the word and baptized in the land of Judea previously (see John 3:22-24). Now His forerunner John the Baptism was put in prison, he left the land of Judea and came to Galilee.

Spiritual Meaning:Jesus came to Galilee”, Galilee was a place where was inhabited mainly by the Gentiles (see Matt.4:15). This area was despised by the Jews, so it symbolized the nations. The Lord Jesus in His work was persecuted from Galilee, which suggested that the Lord turned to grant the salvation to the sinners of the Gentiles for the sake of the Jews’ rejection of the salvation.

Enlightenment in the Word:

1)    John the Baptism was the introducer of the Lord Jesus. When the one being introduced started His work publicly, the introducer should retreat and not compete with Him. Unfortunately, John the Baptist had not noticed this point and therefore God raised a circumstance to put him in prison.

2)    “Being put in prison” means one’s actions are limited. He who bears witness of the Lord usually has no freedom of actions but gives the priority to the will of the Lord in everything.

3)    We were foolish, weak, ignoble, despised (like Galilee which was despised by the Jews) and things that were not in the world, but God has chosen us. Therefore, believers should never boast themselves (1Cor.1:27-29).

4)    Though John who preached the glad tidings of the kingdom of God was put in prison, the Lord still came to Galilee to preach this gospel. The devil may seize the messengers, but it can never block the messages of God.

5)    If the messages that we preach are truly out of God, we may pass away but the messages will never be withered.


Mark. 1:15 and saying, "The time is fulfilled, and the kingdom of God is at hand. Repent, and believe in the gospel."

YLT: “and saying -- `Fulfilled hath been the time, and the reign of God hath come nigh, reform ye, and believe in the good news.'”

Meaning of Words: “fulfill”: be full, accomplish, perfect; “gospel”: the glad tidings; “at hand”: before one’s eyes (concerning location), approach (concerning time); “repent”: the change of mind and thought; “believe”: commit to trust, put in trust with;

Literal Meaning: “the time is fulfilled, it is according to the time table of the dispensation of God’s redemption of God. The time of sending His Son Jesus Christ to come into the world to carry out the dispensation of God

And the kingdom of God is at hand”. ---- “The kingdom of God” refers to the sphere that God reigns.

Repent, it indicates that the mind of men was originally far away from God with our back toward God, but now men should turn unto God form the inner heart in order to come into the kingdom of God. “Repent, it does not contain any meaning of action in the original, but the change of heart and mind.

And the kingdom of God is at hand”, it is a fact, so men shall “repent”. It is not because one has repented and that the kingdom of God comes afterwards.

And believe in the gospel”, “believe” means “accept and receive” (see John 1:12).

Enlightenment in the Word:

1)    Where there is no the obedience to the authority of God, there is no the kingdom of God.

2)    Whenever our hearts turn to God, the kingdom of God will be brought in at the same time.

3)    One should be governed by the authority of God, and then he will bring others under the authority of God.

4)    Repent, and believe in the gospel”. Repentance is first, and believing follows afterwards. If a man wants to believe the gospel, he should repent. A man who has truly believed must have been repented first and believe afterwards.

5)    Every true faith follows after repentance. And all the true repentance must lead to true faith.


Mark. 1:16 And as He walked by the Sea of Galilee, He saw Simon and Andrew his brother casting a net into the sea; for they were fishermen.

YLT: “And, walking by the sea of Galilee, he saw Simon, and Andrew his brother, casting a drag into the sea, for they were fishers,”

Meaning of Words: “Simon”: hearer; “Andrew”: strong, man; 

Literal Meaning:walked by the Sea of Galilee”, actually the Sea of Galilee was a small freshwater lake, which was also called the Lake of Gennesaret (Luke. 5:1), the Sea of Tiberias (John. 21:1) or the Lake of Chinnereth in the old times (Num. 34:11).

Spiritual Meaning:casting a net into the sea”, “sea” symbolizes the world; “casting a net” symbolizing that the church preaches the gospel corporately (“fishing” represents preaching the gospel individually).


Mark. 1:17 Then Jesus said to them, "Follow Me, and I will make you become fishers of men."

YLT: “and Jesus said to them, `Come ye after me, and I shall make you to become fishers of men;'”

Literal Meaning: Peter and Andrew had early followed the Lord Jesus (John. 1:40-42) and returned to make a living by fishing. Now the Lord called them for the second time to give up their career and preach as fishers of men.

  “Follow Me”, come to be my disciples. In the old times, the rabbi who received disciples not only taught the disciples doctrines, but also let them learn the walking of the teachers by living with him together ---- wherever the rabbi went, his disciples would follow him and learn from the rabbi’s.

Enlightenment in the Word:

1)    What men wish is fishes---- the earthly wealth, but what God desires is men---- to whom God shows His grace. Those who follow the Lord should give up the fishes to gain men for the Lord and he should be gained by the Lord at first.

2)    If we hold fast Christ and follow in His steps (“follow me”), we will draw more people to follow Him (as “fishers of men”).

3)    It was the second time that the Lord called them. They were saved by the first call of the Lord (John. 1:35-42). They were called to be fishers of men by the second one. First of all, one should be saved and will gain men afterwards.

4)    I will make you become fishers of men”, they did not change their work after being saved, and still kept the same work after being called. However, the net was changed, and the purpose was changed. They became the fishers of men. All that men have learned before being called are not vain, for they will be brought before the Lord after those men are called, and the Lord will use them again.

5)    What the Lord had arranged for us before being saved was usually a previous good preparation for us to be used by the Lord after being saved. The way of our whole life has been early governed by the hand of the Lord.


Mark. 1:18 They immediately left their nets and followed Him.

YLT: “and immediately, having left their nets, they followed him.”

Literal Meaning: this verse used the word “immediately” again, showing that there was not any hesitation or delay between the calling and following. They left all things (left their nets) without any consideration, and followed the Lord.

Enlightenment in the Word:

1)    The true reason of men’s following the Lord is that the Lord draws them (John. 12:33). The moment the Lord calls men, they will give up everything immediately and follow Him.

2)    Draw me, we will run after Him (S. of Sol 1:4).

3)    He who follows the Lord should leave something. Anyone who is not willing to give up for the Lord is not worthy of being His disciples. All those who want to follow the Lord are willing to pay for the cost of “being the disciples”.


Mark. 1:19 When He had gone a little farther from there, He saw James the son of Zebedee, and John his brother, who also were in the boat mending their nets.

YLT: “And having gone on thence a little, he saw James of Zebedee, and John his brother, and they were in the boat refitting the nets,”

The Background: Salome, mother of Jacob and John, was the sister of Mary and the mother of the Lord Jesus (see Mark. 15:40, John. 19:25). Therefore, they were cousins of the Lord Jesus. Their father Zebedee might be rich and influential, so he was affordable to hire servants (Mark. 1:20) and his son John was familiar with the high priest (see John. 18:15).

Literal Meaning: “mending the nets” includes washing and mending the nets, and hanging the nets up to dry it for the fishing next day.

Enlightenment in the Word:

1)    The Lord kept “going on” and kept working. How urgently He desires to gain men!

2)    John was mending nets when he was called, and the main work of him in the assembly (“boat”) later was mending the breaches to guard against the invasion of heresy (see 1John, 2John, 3John).


Mark. 1:20 And immediately He called them, and they left their father Zebedee in the boat with the hired servants, and went after Him.

YLT: “and immediately he called them, and, having left their father Zebedee in the boat with the hired servants, they went away after him.”

Literal Meaning:immediately He called them”, the word “immediately” indicated the urgency of the Lord’s call on them. “Call” is not a common call in the original, for it carries the meaning of “inciting” and “urging”.

Enlightenment in the Word:

1)    He who wants to be a Christian should have an absolute attitude at any price. But only when the Lord calls us personally, can we follow Him at any price.

2)    If the Lord has indeed called us, the former status (“boat”) and relationship (“father”) in the past days will not remain.

3)    He who does not know the Lord refuses the Lord. He who knows the Lord is unable to refuse the Lord ---- if we have truly known the preciousness of the Lord, the color of the world will fade.


Mark. 1:21 Then they went into Capernaum, and immediately on the Sabbath He entered the synagogue and taught.

YLT: “And they go on to Capernaum, and immediately, on the sabbaths, having gone into the synagogue, he was teaching,”

Literal Meaning:went into Capernaum”, “Capernaum” lay in the north part of the Sea of Galilee. Jesus had ever dwelt in Capernaum for a period of time and preached there (Matt.9:1; 11:23).

  He entered the synagogue and taught”. ---- “Synagogue” was generated after the Jews were carried away to Babylon. Since there was no the Holy Temple among the Gentile land at that time, the synagogue emerged as the times required so that the Jews could gather together to worship God and hear the word of God. When Jesus began to preach the word, he usually taught men in the synagogue for the sake of the large number of men in it.


Mark. 1:22 And they were astonished at His teaching, for He taught them as one having authority, and not as the scribes.

YLT: “and they were astonished at his teaching, for he was teaching them as having authority, and not as the scribes.”

Literal Meaning: “and they were astonished at His teaching, it indicated that His teaching was out of the ordinary.

As one having authority, and not as the scribes”, “scribes” refers to those who had good research in the law of the Old Testament, and most of them were the Pharisees. The differences between the teaching of the Lord and that of the scribes were as follows: (1) the teaching of the scribes was: “it was said to the ancients”, but the teaching of the Lord was “I tell you” (see Matt.5:21-22). (2) The scribes explained the external knowledge of letters, but the Lord set forth the spirit and reality of the letters (see 2Cor. 3:6). The former was of no power, but the latter carried authority and power that made men obtain the enlightenment in the word of God so that they would fear and obey God.


Mark. 1:23 Now there was a man in their synagogue with an unclean spirit. And he cried out,

YLT: “And there was in their synagogue a man with an unclean spirit, and he cried out,”

Literal Meaning:with an unclean spirit”, the “unclean spirit”, the living creature before the age of Adam, was lured by Satan to follow it to rebel God and then was judged to become the evil spirit without a body. The unclean spirit originally lived in the sea, but then attached to the body of men to have rest after the corruption of men. “Unclean spirit” shows the nature and actions of the devil, namely, filth and uncleanness.

  “With an unclean spirit” or the unclean spirit “dwelt”, all those who have the indwelling unclean spirit may usually have the supernatural actions for being controlled by the evil spirit.

Spiritual Meaning: that the unclean spirit dwells in the body of men typifies that Satan forcibly occupies the men who are created by God for His purpose and makes men become its tool against God.

Enlightenment in the Word:

1)    Even in the place where the Jews worshipped God (“synagogue”), there was a man with an unclean spirit. Today, in the church, perhaps there are also many believers who are controlled by the power of Satan (see Rev.2:13).

2)    The devil does not fear that there are men who have only a form of piety but fear those who have the power of godliness (see 2Tim 3:5).


Mark. 1:24 saying, "Let us alone! What have we to do with You, Jesus of Nazareth? Did You come to destroy us? I know who You are--the Holy One of God!"

YLT: “saying, `Away! what -- to us and to thee, Jesus the Nazarene? thou didst come to destroy us; I have known thee who thou art -- the Holy One of God.'”

Literal Meaning: “what have we to do with You, Jesus of Nazareth?”, “what have we to do with You”, it is a Hebrew idiom in the original.

I know who You are”, the subject was changed from “we” to “I”. It might be many evil spirits in that man, and one of them began to speak on behalf of them.

The Holy One of God”: the Holy One of God, another name of the Son of God;

Enlightenment in the Word:

1)    The “unclean spirit” and “the Holy One of God” are contrary and can not exist together.

2)    To this end the Son of God has been manifested, that he might undo the works of the devil (1Jn.3:18).

3)    Though the unclean spirit knew the Lord is the Holy One of God, he had nothing to do with him and could not change its filthy nature. Obviously, the objective knowledge has no great help.

4)    The unclean spirit clearly knows its end is perdition, but it still does evil. Many people do not care for the eternal torture in the future, but merely for the apparent enjoyment.

5)    The evil spirit can also know those who are of God and the real condition in them (see Acts.19:15).


Mark. 1:25 But Jesus rebuked him, saying, "Be quiet, and come out of him!"

YLT: “And Jesus rebuked him, saying, `Be silenced, and come forth out of him,'”

Literal Meaning: “be quiet”: shut up. The Lord did not allow the devil say: “the Holy One of God”. For when the Lord was on the earth, He was always standing on the status of “the Son of Man” to fulfill the will of God.

Enlightenment in the Word:

1)    Even though the testimony of the devil is true, the Lord will also not receive it.

2)    When Satan uses those who oppose the Lord to speak many words, we can ask the Lord to prevent the devil from opening its mouth or raising any voice.


Mark. 1:26 And when the unclean spirit had convulsed him and cried out with a loud voice, he came out of him.

YLT: “and the unclean spirit having torn him, and having cried with a great voice, came forth out of him,”

Literal Meaning: “and when the unclean spirit had convulsed him”, “convulsed”: to mangle, i.e. convulse with epilepsy instinctively;

Enlightenment in the Word:

1)    The evil spirit usually makes men to do something out of control and disobey their own will.

2)    Man with an unclean spirit may have many sins, and he has to pass through much pain before obtaining the salvation of the Lord. Though the Lord has the grace of forgiveness, the sinners can still not escape the torment of birth.

3)    The dirtier the devil is, the harder it will be cast off. The more sins one has, the harder the sins will leave.


Mark. 1:27 Then they were all amazed, so that they questioned among themselves, saying, "What is this? What new doctrine is this? For with authority He commands even the unclean spirits, and they obey Him."

YLT: “and they were all amazed, so as to reason among themselves, saying, `What is this? what new teaching this? that with authority also the unclean spirits he commandeth, and they obey him!'”

Meaning of Words: amazed”: astound, astonished; “questioned”: to investigate jointly, discuss; “command”: order;

Literal Meaning:What new doctrine is this?” ---- The word “new” does not represent the newness in respect of time, but the unusual freshness of one matter by nature.

Enlightenment in the Word:

1)    There is authority in the Lord’s word, which is able to cast off the unclean spirit. Believers can also draw the power in the Lord’s word through faith to deal with the devil.

2)    Even the unclean spirits obey Him. Today, how can we believers of the Lord not hear His word?


Mark. 1:28 And immediately His fame spread throughout all the region around Galilee.

YLT: “And the fame of him went forth immediately to all the region, round about, of Galilee.”

Meaning of Words: “fame”: hearing, report; “spread”: go out; “around”: all the areas, and all the places.


Mark. 1:29 Now as soon as they had come out of the synagogue, they entered the house of Simon and Andrew, with James and John.

YLT: “And immediately, having come forth out of the synagogue, they went to the house of Simon and Andrew, with James and John,”

Meaning of Words: as soon as”: immediately, instantly;


Mark. 1:30 But Simon's wife's mother lay sick with a fever, and they told Him about her at once.

YLT: “and the mother-in-law of Simon was lying fevered, and immediately they tell him about her,”

Literal Meaning:Simon's wife's mother”, it could be seen that Peter had married, and Peter took her around as his fellow-worker (see 1Cor.9:5). It was said that both of them were martyred for the Lord.

Spiritual Meaning: “his wife’s mother” stood for the Jews.

  “Sick with a fever” symbolized two points:

1) The Jews would suffer extreme misery in the great distress.

2) The Jews were exceedingly zealous of the law and the doctrines of their fathers (Gal. 1:14, Acts. 21:20).

Enlightenment in the Word:

1)    If we believers are zealous of things besides the Lord but neglect the Lord Himself, it is sick with a fever in the eyes of God.

2)    When she was “sick with a fever”, she felt different from others, because she was the only one who felt fevered. All the abnormal excitement or zealousness may be “sick with a fever”.

3)    Being sick with a fever”, it also symbolizes the unrestrained temper. If we can not control out temper, we will be like the one who is sick with a fever and is abnormal in the eyes of others.

4)    “They told Him about her”, we should pray for others who are in abnormal conditions. May the Lord show grace to them.


Mark. 1:31 So He came and took her by the hand and lifted her up, and immediately the fever left her. And she served them.

YLT: “and having come near, he raised her up, having laid hold of her hand, and the fever left her immediately, and she was ministering to them.”

Spiritual Meaning: this verse symbolizes that when the Lord comes again, the Israel will be touched by His coming and therefore the whole house of Israel will be saved (Rom. 11:26). They will be revived and serve the King Christ.

Enlightenment in the Word:

1)    The Lord’s “taking” solved all the problems. Unless there is real contact with the Lord, everything will be done in vain.

2)    When our hands that serve works only are touched by the Lord, the abnormal fever will leave and then we can perform true ministry to the Lord.

3)    One shall be healed first, and then enter the service. If we want to serve the Lord and the assembly, we must ask the Lord to heal the sickness in our life first.


Mark. 1:32 At evening, when the sun had set, they brought to Him all who were sick and those who were demon-possessed.

YLT: “And evening having come, when the sun did set, they brought unto him all who were ill, and who were demoniacs,”

Spiritual Meaning: we can see from the words that the Lord said to the sick person for many times in the books of Gospel, many disease was caused by sins (Matt.9:2; John5:14 and etc.). Therefore, healing the disease symbolized the remission of sins and dealing with sins.

Enlightenment in the Word: the whole world lies in the wickedness (1John 5:19) and is deceived by it. However, thanks to the Lord! He has delivered us from the devil and removed all the torment of our life.


Mark. 1:33 And the whole city was gathered together at the door.

YLT: “and the whole city was gathered together near the door,”


Mark. 1:34 Then He healed many who were sick with various diseases, and cast out many demons; and He did not allow the demons to speak, because they knew Him.

YLT: “and he healed many who were ill of manifold diseases, and many demons he cast forth, and was not suffering the demons to speak, because they knew him.”

Literal Meaning:did not allow the demons to speak, because they knew Him”, the Lord did not allow the demons to speak, for the witness of the demon could only arouse the misunderstandings of the people toward the Lord and even disturbed His works.


Mark. 1:35 Now in the morning, having risen a long while before daylight, He went out and departed to a solitary place; and there He prayed.

YLT: “And very early, it being yet night, having risen, he went forth, and went away to a desert place, and was there praying;”

Literal Meaning: as a man, the Lord had to keep good fellowship with God the Father through prayer and thus drew power from God the Father.

Enlightenment in the Word:

1)    The Lord worked till deep in the night, and the next day He still got up early at dawn to enjoy the fellowship with God. No matter how many works there were, they could not disturb His fellowship with God the Father. The works had not occupied the necessary position of God in Him. This was why His works were efficacious.

2)    No matter how busy we believers are, we can not forget to set aside a period of time to enjoy the fellowship with God.

3)    The most significant thing of serving God is that one should first know the will of God through prayer. One should never serve God according to his own will.

4)    One can not serve God without prayer. Sometimes, we may have no service, but we can not live without prayer.

5)    The best time for believers to draw near God is the time before daylight. It has not only the quietest physical environment, but also the most peaceful and suitable mood in men.


Mark. 1:36 And Simon and those who were with Him searched for Him.

YLT: “and Simon and those with him went in quest of him,”

Literal Meaning:searched for Him”, it carried a meaning of “being in hot pursuit”.

Enlightenment in the Word: every morning, we shall pursue the Lord with our spiritual partners together (2Tim. 2:22).


Mark. 1:37 When they found Him, they said to Him, "Everyone is looking for You."

YLT: “and having found him, they say to him, -- `All do seek thee;'”

Literal Meaning: “everyone is looking for You.” ---- That everyone looked for the Lord was not for the sake of the Lord, but for curiosity, or joining for fun, or making Him the king, or even eating full (see John 6:26).


Mark. 1:38 But He said to them, "Let us go into the next towns, that I may preach there also, because for this purpose I have come forth."

YLT: “and he saith to them, `We may go to the next towns, that there also I may preach, for for this I came forth.'”

Literal Meaning:that I may preach there also, because for this purpose I have come forth”, the Lord refused all those who sought Him, for He was unwilling to reveal Himself (see 1:44-45; 3:12; 5:43; 6:32; 7:36; 8:26; 9:30). Mark recorded it particularly to explain the Lord’s status of being a bondservant. He was neither willing to be advocated by others to be king, nor satisfied the curiosity of men or the desire of fun, for He had a single purpose on the earth, namely, preaching the word of God. He “had come forth for this purpose”.

Enlightenment in the Word: when everyone was looking for the Lord (v.37), the Lord even left them intentionally. To be the worker of the Lord, one shall not seek “followers”, but fulfill the will of God wholeheartedly.


Mark. 1:39 And He was preaching in their synagogues throughout all Galilee, and casting out demons.

YLT: “And he was preaching in their synagogues, in all Galilee, and is casting out the demons,”


Mark. 1:40 Now a leper came to Him, imploring Him, kneeling down to Him and saying to Him, "If You are willing, You can make me clean."

YLT: “and there doth come to him a leper, calling on him, and kneeling to him, and saying to him -- `If thou mayest will, thou art able to cleanse me.'”

Literal Meaning:kneeling down to Him, it was a humble action, showing that he knew the authority of the Lord.

“Lord, if You are willing, You can make me clean.” ---- It shows that on one hand he knew his corruption and he needed healing, and on the other hand, he knew that the power of the Lord could heal him.

Spiritual Meaning: “a leper”, according to cases in the Old Testament, leper is connected with rebelling the authority and disobeying the commandments (see Num.12:1-10, 2Kin.5:9-14), therefore this leper is a typification of the disobeying people, namely, the Israel (Rom. 10:21).

In the Bible, leper is the typification of men’s unclean sins:

  (1) Which starts from the inner part, symbolizing that sin is out of men’s nature.

2) Which is difficult to be healed, symbolizing that sin is difficult to be changed. 

3) Which is contagious, symbolizing that sin is contagious.

4) Which can make men rot and stink to death, symbolizing the dirtiness of sin and the dreadful and miserable end of sin.

Enlightenment in the Word:

1)    Men’s flesh and nature, full of sins, always offend God. We are all lepers in God’s eyes.

2)    This verse reveals us the conditions for being healed as a sinner:

a) Who has to admit his corruption and helplessness.

   b) Who has to come and worship the Lord and confess his sins.

   c) Who has to trust in the Lord’s power of healing.

   d) Who has to ask the Lord Jesus.

3)    We have to come down from our own throne and come to the Lord with humbleness (“come and worship Him”) so that we will experience His power.

4)    Many times we believe in the Lord’s almightiness and we dare not believe in His willingness. Believers should not only believe in His power but also His love.

5)    The Lord’s “can” is the matter of His power. The Lord’s “willingness” is the matter of His will. The Lord’s power is dominated by His will.      

Mark. 1:41 Then Jesus, moved with compassion, stretched out His hand and touched him, and said to him, "I am willing; be cleansed."

YLT: “And Jesus having been moved with compassion, having stretched forth the hand, touched him, and saith to him, `I will; be thou cleansed;'”

Literal Meaning: “Jesus put out His hand and touched him”, men often do not touch lepers lest they may be infected with the uncleanness. However the Lord Jesus acted in an opposite way and brought cleanness to the one He had touched.

“I am willing”. ---- It unveils that the Lord does not only have the power to heal men but also His heart was “willing”.

Spiritual Meaning: “Jesus put out His hand and touched him”, the Lord’s touching was direct physical contact, which symbolized that the Lord came into the Jews by incarnation. He was the one whom the Jews had heard, whom had seen with their eyes, whom they had looked upon, and whom their hands handled (1John. 1:1).

Enlightenment in the Word:

1)    The Lord could say only a word to heal the leper, but He “touched” him ---- this was an action of love. The Lord is able to sympathize with our infirmities (Heb. 4:15) and our sufferings. He likes to enter our feelings (“Jesus put out His hand and touched him”) to sympathize with us.

2)    “Touch” represents union in the Bible. The Lord, the heavenly doctor, heals us from our inner part through union with us.

3)    The Lord “can” heal the sick men as well as that He is “willing” to heal them. If He is “unwilling”, we can still not profit from His “power”. However, His hand is “powerful”, and His heart is “willing”.

4)    The Lord said “I am willing”. Sinners are in the heart of the Lord. Moreover, He enters the feelings of sinners and feels sinners’ sufferings as if it were received in person.

5)    The Lord not only said that He was willing, He but also put out His hand and touched Him, indicating that His willingness was true and complete. If a man has not been saved, it is not due to the unwillingness of the Lord, but the unfaith of men as well as unwillingness of coming to the Lord.

6)    “Be cleansed”, there is power in the words of the Lord. Once the word is spoken by the Lord, it will take effect.

7)    Most of the works of the Lord are done by His words. If we want to work with the Lord together, we should firstly obtain His words.


Mark. 1:42 As soon as He had spoken, immediately the leprosy left him, and he was cleansed.

YLT: “and he having spoken, immediately the leprosy went away from him, and he was cleansed.”


Mark. 1:43 And He strictly warned him and sent him away at once,

YLT: “And having sternly charged him, immediately he put him forth,”


Mark. 1:44 and said to him, "See that you say nothing to anyone; but go your way, show yourself to the priest, and offer for your cleansing those things which Moses commanded, as a testimony to them."

YLT: “and saith to him, `See thou mayest say nothing to any one, but go away, thyself shew to the priest, and bring near for thy cleansing the things Moses directed, for a testimony to them.'”

The Background: according to the law in the Old Testament, when a leper was healed, he would show himself to the priest. After the priest had pronounced him clean, he would be able to sacrifice to the Lord. After offering the sacrifice to the Lord, he would have witness before the people, thus becoming an unshakable fact (Lev. 14:2-20).

Literal Meaning: say nothing to anyone, it was because that the Lord knew what was in men (John. 2:25) and He did not want men to follow Him with evil motives.

“But go your way, show yourself to the priest, and offer the gift that Moses commanded.” ---- Since it was a transitional period and the time of grace had not come yet (the Lord had not fulfilled the great redemption by His crucifixion), the Jewish believers still walked according to regulations of the law in the Old Testament.

“As a testimony to them”, it proved that the leper had been fully recovered and he was able to contact with others normally.

Spiritual Meaning: “offer the gift that Moses commanded”, the gift” typifies Christ. He is the proof for a sinner of being acceptable to God (see Heb. 9:9, 14, 24-28).

Enlightenment in the Word:

1)    A man of heaven does not like to show off (“see that you tell no one”), but likes to hide himself.

2)    The Lord did not fully disregard the righteousness of the law (Matt. 3:15). Believers should not disregard the right and lawful testimony before men (“as a testimony to them”) on the excuse of being spiritual.

3)    After we are saved, we have to continually offer Christ and manifest Christ as to be acceptable to God.

4)    If an infamous sinner who has been saved has no testimony of repentance before the people, his testimony will be weak.


Mark. 1:45 However, he went out and began to proclaim it freely, and to spread the matter, so that Jesus could no longer openly enter the city, but was outside in deserted places; and they came to Him from every direction.

YLT: “And he, having gone forth, began to proclaim much, and to spread abroad the thing, so that no more he was able openly to enter into the city, but he was without in desert places, and they were coming unto him from every quarter.”

Enlightenment in the Word:

1)    How humble and poor of many people who kneel down when seeking grace! However, having received the grace, they forget the Lord totally as well as the previous poor conditions. This is the mirror of many Christians.

2)    If one preaches the word of the Lord without hearing the word of the Lord, he will only find the contrary result ---- the Lord will no longer openly reveal Himself among them. 


III. Outlines of the Spiritual Lessons


A Model Worker of the Lord ---- the Example of John the Baptism

a)    Who did not preach other things ---- he preached Jesus Christ only (v.1).

b)    Who did not live for other things ---- he lived for Jesus Christ only (v.2-4).

c)    Who did not boast other things ---- he boasted Jesus Christ only (v.5-7).

d)    Who did not know other things ---- he knew Jesus Christ only (v.8).


The Ministry of the Forerunner

A.  Prepare the way of the LORD; Make His paths straight (v.3).” --- to prepare the heart of men for the Lord;

B.  There comes One after me who is mightier than I (v.7)” ---- to point Christ to men;


The Testimony of the Forerunner

A.  “In the wilderness (v.3)” ---- who stood in the transcending status;

B.  “Who was clothed with camel's hair (v.6)” ---- who had no splendid appearance;

C.  “And with a leather belt around his waist (v.6)” ---- whose conversation was constrained;

D.  “And he ate locusts and wild honey (v.6)” ---- who did not receive the supplication of men;


The Spirit of the Forerunner

A.   Who did not seek his own glory, but was only a “voice” (v.3);

B.   Who “cried” (v.3) ---- be full of burden;

C.   Who bore witness of the Lord (v.7-8);

D.   Who was humble and held His status (v.7);


The Result of the Lords Baptism (v.10-11)

A.   The heaven was open for Him.

B.   The Spirit of God descent on Him.

C.   There was sound of praise from God the Father in the heavens, who bore witness of Him.


The Example of Jesus, the Bondservant of God

A.   Who had the experience of cross ---- being baptized (v.9)

B.   Who had the pouring of the Holy Spirit ---- The Holy Spirit of God descent on Him (v.10).

C.   Who had the word of God ---- a voice came from heaven (v.11)

D.   Who had the triumphant life ---- who overcame Satan (v.12-13)

E.   Who had the central message ---- The kingdom of God is at hand. Repent, and believe in the gospel (v.14-15).

F.    Who had followers ---- who called the disciples (v.16-20)


One Certain Day of Jesus Christ

A.   He entered the synagogue in the morning and taught (v.21-28) ---- he preached the messages in the morning in the gathering.

B.   He came out of the synagogue and entered Simon's house to heal his wife's mother (v.29-31) ---- he visited others in the afternoon.

C.   When the sun had set, He healed many sick people (v.32-34) ---- he served those who were in need.

D.   Now in the morning, having risen a long while before daylight, He went out and prayed (v.35) ---- he held the morning watch.


Three Different Kinds of Testimonies

A.   The testimony of John the Baptism ---- His life was worthy of His testimony (v.6-7; Phi. 1:27), so he was acceptable to the Lord.

B.   The testimony of the unclean spirit ---- its nature and action are contrary to its testimony (v.24-25), so he was rebuked by the Lord.

C.   The testimony of the leper after his being healed ---- he had not obeyed the command of the Lord (v.44-45), so he was unprofitable to the Lord.


An Example of Prayer

A.   A prayer without scruple ---- he “came” (the leper could not come to be close with others).

B.   An eager prayer ---- he “implored”;

C.   A humble prayer ---- he “ kneeled down”;

D.   A obedient prayer ---- “If You are willing”;

E.   A prayer with a concentrated purpose ---- “make me clean”.

F.    A prayer with great faith ---- “can”;

G.   An effective prayer ---- “he was cleansed”.


── Caleb HuangChristian Digest Bible Commentary Series

   Translated by Mary Zhou