There are some standing … come in power:understood by some to refer to the establishment by God's power of his kingdom on earth in and through the church; more likely,
as understood by others, a reference to the imminent parousia.
Mk and Mt 17, 1
place the transfiguration of Jesus six days after the first prediction of his passion and death and his instruction to the
disciples on the doctrine of the cross; Lk 9, 28
has “about eight days.” Thus the transfiguration counterbalances the prediction of the passion by affording certain of the
disciples insight into the divine glory that Jesus possessed. His glory will overcome his death and that of his disciples;
cf2 Cor 3, 18; 2 Pt 1, 16–19
. The heavenly voice (7) prepares the disciples to understand that in the divine plan Jesus must die ignominiously before
his messianic glory is made manifest; cf Lk 24, 25–27. See further the note on Mt 17, 1–8
Moses and Elijah represent respectively law and prophecy in the Old Testament and are linked to Mt. Sinai; cfEx 19, 16–20, 17; 1 Kgs 19, 2.8–14
. They now appear with Jesus as witnesses to the fulfillment of the law and the prophets taking place in the person of Jesus
as he appears in glory.
A cloud came, casting a shadow over them:even the disciples enter into the mystery of his glorification. In the Old Testament the cloud covered the meeting tent, indicating
the Lord's presence in the midst of his people (Ex 40, 34–35) and came to rest upon the temple in Jerusalem at the time of its dedication (1 Kgs 8, 10).
At the transfiguration of Jesus his disciples had seen Elijah. They were perplexed because, according to the rabbinical interpretation
of Mal 3, 23–24
, Elijah was to come first. Jesus’ response shows that Elijah has come, in the person of John the Baptist, to prepare for
the day of the Lord. Jesus must suffer greatly and be treated with contempt(12) like the Baptist (13; cf 6, 17–29
The disciples’ failure to effect a cure seems to reflect unfavorably on Jesus (14–18.22). In response Jesus exposes their lack of trust in God (19) and scores their lack of prayer (29), i.e., of conscious reliance
on God's power when acting in Jesus’ name. For Mt, see the note on 17, 14–20. Luke 9, 37–43
centers attention on Jesus’ sovereign power.
This kind can only come out through prayer:a variant reading adds “and through fasting.”
Mark probably intends this incident and the sayings that follow as commentary on the disciples’ lack of understanding (32).
Their role in Jesus’ work is one of service, especially to the poor and lowly. Children were the symbol Jesus used for the
anawim,the poor in spirit, the lowly in the Christian community.
Jesus warns against jealousy and intolerance toward others, such as exorcists who do not follow us.The saying in v 40
is a broad principle of the divine tolerance. Even the smallest courtesies shown to those who teach in Jesus’ name do not
see the note on Mt 5, 22
These verses, lacking in some important early manuscripts, are here omitted as scribal additions. They simply repeat v 48
, itself a modified citation of Is 66, 24
Everyone will be salted with fire:so the better manuscripts. Some add “every sacrifice will be salted with salt.” The purifying and preservative use of salt
in food (Lv 2, 13) and the refinement effected through fire refer here to comparable effects in the spiritual life of the disciples of Jesus.
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