What does Mark 6:19 mean?
ESV: And Herodias had a grudge against him and wanted to put him to death. But she could not,
NIV: So Herodias nursed a grudge against John and wanted to kill him. But she was not able to,
NASB: And Herodias held a grudge against him and wanted to put him to death, and could not do so;
CSB: So Herodias held a grudge against him and wanted to kill him. But she could not,
NLT: So Herodias bore a grudge against John and wanted to kill him. But without Herod’s approval she was powerless,
KJV: Therefore Herodias had a quarrel against him, and would have killed him; but she could not:
NKJV: Therefore Herodias held it against him and wanted to kill him, but she could not;
Verse Commentary:
Sandwiched between the story of Jesus equipping and sending out the Twelve to preach, heal, and expel demons (Mark 6:7–13) and their victorious return (Mark 6:30), Mark recounts the tragedy that befell the messenger who came before Jesus. John the Baptist is the son of the priest Zechariah and his wife Elizabeth (Luke 1:5–25). He is Jesus' cousin and herald (Mark 1:2–3). He wears "camel's hair and [wears] a leather belt around his waist and [eats] locusts and wild honey" (Mark 1:6). Scholars speculate that he is an Essene. The Essenes were a reclusive sect, combining the holiness and spiritual separation of the Pharisees with mysticism and a form of monasticism. It's believed they are responsible for the careful storage of the Dead Sea Scrolls.

Herodias is the granddaughter of Herod the Great. Her father, Aristobulus, draws the jealousy of his father and brother and is strangled for treason. Her mother is accused of adultery by Salome, Herod the Great's sister, and executed. Herodias rises to a prominent position in Rome by marrying her half-uncle Philip, but like many descendants of Herod the Great, she wants more. Her divorce from Philip and marriage to Antipas gives her more than a life of luxury and esteem, it gives her power. Her name means "queen," and as the wife of a tetrarch, she is one step closer to fulfilling that role.

John the Baptist and his condemnation of her marriage as unlawful threatens everything Herodias has. Not only could he incite the Jewish leadership against her, his very presence as a public figure who does not respect her is a problem. She will soon use her daughter to solve this problem.

The hateful attitude of Herodias towards John the Baptist echoes other passages in the Bible. Queen Jezebel hated Elijah and tried to have him killed (1 Kings 19:1–3). The Jewish leaders hate Jesus and are successful in having Him killed (Mark 14—15). In all three cases, the love of the world and what it has to offer blinds the antagonists to the message of those trying to save them. This is the story humanity has struggled with since Eden.
Verse Context:
Mark 6:14–29 follows the disciples' success in continuing John the Baptist's work with a flashback of John's execution. John was Jesus' cousin (Luke 1:36) and the herald of Jesus' ministry (John 1:19–28). He preached repentance to many, including Andrew and Peter (John 1:35–42). He also baptized Jesus (Mark 1:9–11). Herod Antipas ruled over Galilee, where Jesus was from, and Perea, near where John preached. Antipas was fascinated by John, but his wife felt threatened by John's condemnation of their incestuous marriage. This story is also found in Matthew 14:1–12, Luke 3:19–20, and Luke 9:7–9.
Chapter Summary:
Jesus returns to His hometown of Nazareth, but the people there are faithless and skeptical. As a result, Jesus performs no more than a few minor miracles. He then assigns His twelve apostles to travel in pairs, preaching repentance and healing various conditions. Mark then takes a brief detour to explain the death of John the Baptist, beheaded after Herod Antipas is tricked by his wife. The focus then returns to Jesus, explaining His miraculous feeding of thousands of people, walking on water, and healing people in Gennesaret.
Chapter Context:
Even as the Twelve are given opportunity to wield some of Jesus' power and authority, they still struggle to understand. They misinterpret who He is, what He has come to do, and how much He will ask of them. They fear Jesus' display of deity, but seem to dismiss the murderous rejection of His hometown and the death of John the Baptist. It's easy to have faith in a prophet who seems poised to rescue Israel from foreign rule. It is still beyond them to understand that He is actually God.
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 5/27/2024 11:49:43 PM
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