January 30, 2009

Return to Your Rank! (Mark 8:33)

Category: Bible - NT - Mark :: Permalink

I have been preaching through the book of Mark and recently preached on Mark 8, where Jesus begins to teach his disciples that he must suffer many things, be rejected, die, and rise again.  Peter scolds Jesus and Jesus, in turn, scolds Peter: “Get behind me, Satan.”

A study of the way “behind me” is used in Mark’s Gospel suggests that it is the language of discipleship.  When Jesus called Peter, the same words are used: “Come behind me” (1:17).  And in the very next verse, after Jesus rebukes Peter, he uses the same words again: “If anyone wants to come behind me” (8:34).

In that light, it appears that what Jesus is saying to Peter is not “Go away and don’t come back.”  Rather, it is “Get back behind me.  Return to your proper place as a disciple, not confronting me satanically to tempt me to step off the way, but following behind me on the way.”

Posted by John Barach @ 3:56 pm | Discuss (3)

3 Responses to “Return to Your Rank! (Mark 8:33)”

  1. Dad B Says:

    Good observation as a result of exegesis and knowledge of Greek. I wish other pastors would do likewise.

  2. H.Rob Says:

    Pastor Barach, are there any online recordings or notes of your recent sermons on Mark (other than this blog posting, of course)? – Many thanks

  3. John Says:

    At this point, H. Rob, there are no recordings of my sermons online. I see that the church webpage has a place for Audio, but there’s nothing up there right now.

    As for notes, you can find some here, though that doesn’t include anything recent.

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