View Mark 4 in the note window.
1: (Mt 13:1,Lu 8:4).
2: He taught them many things by parables - After the usual
manner of the eastern nations, to make his instructions more
agreeable to them, and to impress them the more upon attentive
hearers. A parable signifies not only a simile or comparison,
and sometimes a proverb, but any kind of instructive speech,
wherein spiritual things are explained and illustrated by natural,(Pr 1:6).
To understand a proverb and the interpretation - The proverb is
the literal sense, the interpretation is the spiritual resting
in the literal sense killeth, but the spiritual giveth life.
3: Hearken - This word he probably spoke with a loud voice, to
stop the noise and hurry of the people.
10: When he was alone - That is, retired apart from the multitude.
11: To them that are without - So the Jews termed the heathens:
so our Lord terms all obstinate unbelievers: for they shall not
enter into his kingdom: they shall abide in outer darkness.
12: So that seeing they see and do not perceive - They would not
see before now they could not, God having given them up to the
blindness which they had chosen.
13: Know ye not this parable? - Which is as it were the foundation
of all those that I shall speak hereafter; and is so easy to be
19: The desire of other things choke the word - A deep and
important truth! The desire of any thing, otherwise than as it
leads to happiness in God, directly tends to barrenness of soul.
Entering in - Where they were not before. Let him therefore who
has received and retained the word, see that no other desire
then enter in, such as perhaps till then he never knew.
It becometh unfruitful - After the fruit had grown almost to
21: And he said, Is a candle - As if he had said, I explain these
things to you, I give you this light, not to conceal, but to
impart it to others. And if I conceal any thing from you now,
it is only that it may be more effectually manifested hereafter.(Mt 5:15,Lu 8:16,11:33).
22: (Mt 10:26,Lu 8:17).
24: Take heed what ye hear - That is, attend to what you hear,
that it may have its due influence upon you. With what measure
you mete - That is, according to the improvement you make of what
you have heard, still farther assistance shall be given.
And to you that hear - That is, with improvement.
25: He that hath - That improves whatever he has received, to the
good of others, as well as of his own soul.(Mt 13:12,Lu 8:18).
26: So is the kingdom of God - The inward kingdom is like seed
which a man casts into the ground - This a preacher of the Gospel
casts into the heart. And he sleeps and rises night and day - That
is, he has it continually in his thoughts. Meantime it springs
and grows up he knows not how - Even he that sowed it cannot
explain how it grows. For as the earth by a curious kind of
mechanism, which the greatest philosophers cannot comprehend,
does as it were spontaneously bring forth first the blade, then
the ear, then the full corn in the ear: so the soul, in an
inexplicable manner, brings forth, first weak graces, then
stronger, then full holiness: and all this of itself, as a
machine, whose spring of motion is within itself. Yet observe
the amazing exactness of the comparison. The earth brings forth
no corn (as the soul no holiness) without both the care and toil
of man, and the benign influence of heaven.
29: He putteth in the sickle - God cutteth down and gathereth the
corn into his garner.
30: (Mt 13:31,Lu 13:1)8.
33: He spake the word as they were able to hear it - Adapting it
to the capacity of his hearers; and speaking as plain as he
could without offending them. A rule never to be forgotten by
those who instruct others.
35: (Mt 8:23,Lu 8:22).
36: They take him as he was in the vessel - They carried him
immediately in the same vessel from which he had been preaching
to the people.
38: On the pillow - So we translate it, for want of a proper
English expression, for that particular part of the vessel
near the rudder, on which he lay.
39: Peace - Cease thy tossing: Be still - Cease thy roaring;
literally, Be thou gagged.