Mark 7:31-37

Soon after this Jesus left the region of Tyre, and passed through Sidon to the Sea of Galilee, through the region of Decapolis [the ten Hellenistic cities]. They brought to Him a man who was deaf and had difficulty speaking, and they begged Jesus to place His hand on him. Jesus, taking him aside by himself, away from the crowd, put His fingers into the man’s ears, and after spitting, He touched the man’s tongue [with the saliva]; and looking up to heaven, He sighed deeply and said to the man, “Ephphatha,” which [in Aramaic] means, [a]Be opened and released!” And his ears were opened, his tongue was released, and he began speaking plainly. Jesus commanded them not to tell anyone; but the more He ordered them, the more widely they continued to proclaim it. They were thoroughly astounded and completely overwhelmed, saying, “He has done everything well! He even makes the deaf hear and the mute speak!”

  1. Mark 7:34 A command directed to the whole person.

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Mark 8:1-13

Four Thousand Fed

In those days, when there was again a large crowd [gathered before Him] and they had nothing to eat, Jesus called His disciples and told them, “I feel compassion for the crowd; they have been with Me now for three days and have nothing [left] to eat. If I send them away to their homes hungry, they will faint [from exhaustion] on the road; because some of them have come a long way.” His disciples replied to Him, “Where will anyone be able to find enough bread here in this isolated place to feed these people?” He asked them, “How many loaves [of bread] do you have?” They said, “Seven.” He directed the people to sit down on the ground; and taking the seven loaves, He gave thanks and broke them, and [repeatedly] gave them to His disciples to set before them, and they served the crowd. They also had a few small fish; and when Jesus had blessed them [and given thanks], He ordered these [fish] to be set before them as well. And the people ate and were satisfied; and they picked up seven large baskets full of the broken pieces that were left over. About four thousand [men] were there [besides women and children]; and He sent them away. Then immediately He got into the boat with His disciples and went to the district of [a]Dalmanutha.

The Pharisees came out and began to argue [contentiously and debate] with Him, demanding from Him a sign from heaven, to test Him [because of their unbelief]. He groaned and sighed deeply in His spirit and said, “Why does this generation demand a sign? I assure you and most solemnly say to you, [b]no sign will be given to this generation!” Leaving them, He again boarded the boat and left for the other side.

  1. Mark 8:10 This may have been another name for Magadan or Magdala.
  2. Mark 8:12 Lit if a sign will be given. The statement takes the form of an oath, which is an emphatic way of forbidding something.

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