What does Mark 14:71 mean?
ESV: But he began to invoke a curse on himself and to swear, “I do not know this man of whom you speak.”
NIV: He began to call down curses, and he swore to them, 'I don't know this man you're talking about.'
NASB: But he began to curse himself and to swear, 'I do not know this man of whom you speak!'
CSB: Then he started to curse and swear, "I don't know this man you're talking about! "
NLT: Peter swore, 'A curse on me if I’m lying — I don’t know this man you’re talking about!'
KJV: But he began to curse and to swear, saying, I know not this man of whom ye speak.
NKJV: Then he began to curse and swear, “I do not know this Man of whom you speak!”
Verse Commentary:
Peter is afraid. Not only is he the follower of the man who is on trial upstairs, he is the man who cut the ear off Malchus, one of the high priest's servants (John 18:10–11). Now Peter is surrounded by the high priest's other servants as well as his personal guard. In fact, one of the servants is related to Malchus (John 18:26). Immediately after Peter's assault, Jesus healed Malchus (Luke 22:51), and it was apparently too dark and chaotic for Jesus' arresters to get a good look at Peter, but between Peter's Galilean accent and the continued interest from the servant girls, the men with Peter around the fire are beginning to wonder.

To avoid his own punishment, Peter again uses an official judicial denial and adds an oath that tempts punishment. Jewish cultural oaths were usually along the lines of, "Let it be done to me and more also if I am lying." We see the formula from Jezebel (1 Kings 19:2) and Ruth (Ruth 1:17), among others. In his panic, Peter dares God to punish him for lying, as he lies.

"Know," as translated here, is from the Greek root word oikeios. It comes from the word for house, and means to be part of someone's household, someone's close friend. Peter is all these things to Jesus. He has traveled with Jesus for three years. Along with John and James, he is one of Jesus' closest friends. But whatever love he feels for Jesus, Peter has also been using Him. Peter is willing to follow Jesus because Jesus will restore Israel and give the disciples positions of power (Matthew 19:28). When it looks like this won't happen, Peter discovers his love is too shallow to be faithful to Jesus for Jesus' sake.

Jesus further addresses Peter's failing after the crucifixion when He reconciles their relationship (John 21:15–17). Three times Jesus asks Peter if Peter loves Him. The first two times, Jesus uses the word agape. Agape love includes all the feelings associated with love, but also an intentional self-sacrifice for the benefit of others (see 1 Corinthians 13). Peter responds that he feels phileo for Jesus—brotherly love. Peter has learned that he does not have in himself the courage or faithfulness to love Jesus sacrificially. Finally, Jesus asks Peter if he feels phileo for Jesus, and Peter answers in the affirmative. After Jesus ascends into heaven, when the Holy Spirit indwells Peter and the other Christ-followers (Acts 2:1–4), then Peter becomes what he always claimed to be: a faithful, fierce, courageous follower of Jesus.
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.
Accessed 5/25/2024 1:52:50 AM
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