What does Mark 14:68 mean?
ESV: But he denied it, saying, “I neither know nor understand what you mean.” And he went out into the gateway and the rooster crowed.
NIV: But he denied it. 'I don't know or understand what you're talking about,' he said, and went out into the entryway.
NASB: But he denied it, saying, 'I neither know nor understand what you are talking about.' And he went out onto the porch.
CSB: But he denied it: "I don't know or understand what you're talking about." Then he went out to the entryway, and a rooster crowed.
NLT: But Peter denied it. 'I don’t know what you’re talking about,' he said, and he went out into the entryway. Just then, a rooster crowed.
KJV: But he denied, saying, I know not, neither understand I what thou sayest. And he went out into the porch; and the cock crew.
NKJV: But he denied it, saying, “I neither know nor understand what you are saying.” And he went out on the porch, and a rooster crowed.
Verse Commentary:
Peter is in a lower courtyard in the home of the high priest in Jerusalem (Mark 14:66). Above, John is watching the Sanhedrin and the high priest question and beat Jesus (Mark 14:53–65). John sends down a servant girl to bring Peter up (John 18:16), but Peter has no intention of identifying himself as associated with Jesus. For one thing, Jesus is being beaten. He appears to be powerless before the council. Peter knows that coming to Jerusalem was a dangerous proposition because of all the threats against Jesus' life (John 11:8, 16). The friendship of the chief priest's household may protect John, but Peter has no such guarantee.

Peter has another concern, not involving John, who boldly stands closer to the trial. Moments before, during Jesus' arrest, Peter cut off the ear of one of the high priest's servants (John 18:10). It was difficult to see in the garden of Gethsemane, difficult enough that Judas had to directly approach Jesus to identify Him to the guards. Apparently, it was also too hard to see which of Jesus' followers cut off Malchus' ear, but Peter isn't taking any chances. In fact, Peter uses a Jewish phrase often spoken during trials; this phrase literally means "I do not know or understand what you are talking about."

"Gateway" is from the Greek root word proaulion and means "forecourt" or porch. Archaeologists think they have found the high priest's house. The building is comprised of many different levels, with several courtyards and small rooms. It's unclear where Peter is in relation to John and Jesus, but with the servant girl's identification, he moves further away.
Verse Context:
Mark 14:66–72 occurs while Jesus is in an upper courtyard in the home of high priest. The Sanhedrin, the Jewish ruling council, is trying to find something to charge Jesus with, finally settling on blasphemy (Mark 14:53–64). Having found their charge, they are now free to beat Jesus (Mark 14:65). John is apparently watching (John 18:15). Peter is in a lower courtyard, warming himself by a fire, surrounded by servants and guards who grow increasingly suspicious of his presence and his role in the proceedings. Peter's denial is also found in Matthew 26:69–75, Luke 22:54–62, and John 18:15–18, 25–27.
Chapter Summary:
Jesus is anointed in a symbolic anticipation of His death. Judas decides to secretly cooperate with local religious leaders to arrest Jesus in secret. During the Passover meal, Jesus predicts His betrayal by Judas, and Peter's denial. He also institutes the Lord's Supper, also known as communion. After praying on the Mount of Olives, Jesus is captured when Judas identifies Him to a hostile mob sent by Jewish authorities. He endures a corrupt, prejudiced trial, ending in a conviction for blasphemy. Peter, fearing for his life, lies about knowing Jesus, before remembering Jesus' prediction and breaking down in sobs.
Chapter Context:
Jesus has finished His public teaching ministry and now prepares for the crucifixion. His sacrificial loyalty will provide the means by which the disciples' abandonment will be forgiven. Next, the Romans, as representatives of Gentiles throughout history, will join the Jews and kill Jesus. Jesus will be buried, but He will rise again with the promise that His sacrifice will redeem the world. Matthew 26 and Luke 22 follow Mark 14 more closely while John 13:1—18:27 records more of Jesus' teaching in the upper room.
Book Summary:
The Gospel of Mark emphasizes both Jesus' servanthood and His role as the promised Messiah: the Son of God. This is done through a concise, action-packed style. Mark provides relatively few details, instead focusing on actions and simple statements. This relates to the Gospel's authorship, which is believed to be based on the memories of the apostle Peter. These include many of Jesus' miracles, in contrast to other Gospels which include many more of Jesus' teachings and parables. Mark also makes frequent mention of Jesus' ministry being misunderstood by others.
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