Mark 5 Commentary

vv.1-43 “Vanstone describes the effects of Jesus’ ministry well: As He moves about He leaves behind him a trail of transformed scenes and changed situations — fishermen no longer at their nets, sick people restored to health, critics confounded, a storm stilled, hunger assuaged, a dead girl raised to life. Jesus’ presence is an active and instantly transforming presence: He is never the mere observer of the scene or the one who waits upon events but always the transformer of the scene and the initiator of events.”[1]

vv.1-5 “The eastern side of the Sea of Galilee (‘across the lake’) was largely inhabited by Gentiles.  Jesus and his disciples embarked on their journey during the evening, so it was during the night when Jesus encountered this eerie, demoniac.  During that time period, people were often buried in natural caves or tombs carved out of limestone rock.  Thus it was a natural place for the Garasene demonic to reside there because of the popular belief that tombs were the favorite place of demons.”[2]

v.9 “A legion was the number in a Roman regiment consisting of 6000 foot soldiers and 120 horsemen.”[4]

v.13 “What must be seen above all else is that the fate of the swine demonstrates the ultimate intention of the demons with respect to the man they had possessed. It is their purpose to destroy the creation of God, and halted in their destruction of a man, they fulfilled their purpose in the swine.”[5]

vv.15-19 “The spotlight shifts back to the man, whose fear of Jesus is vanquished with the expulsion of the demons. He is seated, the position of the disciple (Luke 10:39; Acts 22:3), and requests to ‘to be with Jesus,’ the role of the disciple (3:14).”[6]

v. 19 “A Christological subtlety in 5:19 – 20 should not be overlooked. Jesus tells the man, ‘Go home to your family and tell them how much the Lord has done for you, and how he has had mercy on you.’ (5:19). The man is not simply to tell people about the miracle that happened to him but what that miracle signifies: The Lord has been at work. Yet Jesus is the one who healed him, and the man announces the things that Jesus has done for him (5:20). For Jesus, all that he does is designed to bring glory to God. For Mark, Jesus is synonymous with the Lord (1:3; 12:36 – 7). Where Jesus acts, God acts.”[7]

vv.21-43 “Consider what polar opposites Jairus and this un-named woman were in terms of their economic, social and religious background.  Jairus was well recognized, important, and as the synagogue ruler a very prominent person in the community.  The bleeding woman was a female in a male dominated society, physically ill, ritually unclean, destitute,  and is not even named in the text signifying her status as a nobody in the community.  In fact she was worse than a nobody, since she was considered to be unclean due to her bleeding (Leviticus 15:25-33).” [8]

“The two however do share significant similarities.  Both of them have run out of alternative solutions and come desperately to Jesus seeking His help.  And they both believe that touching Jesus is all that is required to bring about healing (5:23, ‘put your hands on her’; 5:28 ‘If I just touch his clothes’).”[9]

“By reading the accounts of these two people together, we learn that being important, ritual cleanliness, or having a religious title does not entitle one to special favor when approaching Jesus.  On the other hand, being a nobody, unclean, or impoverished are not liabilities from receiving help from Jesus.  Having faith and trust in Christ is all that matters.”[10]

v.29 “The hemorrhaging woman might have been ‘trembling with fear’ for a number of reasons.  Perhaps she feared that Jesus would be angry that she had caused him to become unclean by her contact with Him.  Perhaps she was afraid that she had received healing without asking so that He might be upset.  Or it could have been the same type of fear that the disciples experienced after Jesus calmed the storm, as she realized the immense power that Jesus had.”[11]

“He forces the issue so that when she leaves healed, she will leave knowing that the one who healed her knows her and cares for her.  She is a person who is worth taking time with and addressing.”[12]


[1] David E. Garland, Mark, The NIV Application Commentary Series (Grand Rapids, MI: Zondervan, 1996) 226.

[2] William Barclay, The Gospel of Mark, Daily Study Bible Series, Rev. ed. (Philadelphia:  Westminster Press, 1975) 118.

[4] David E. Garland, Mark, The NIV Application Commentary Series (Grand Rapids, MI: Zondervan, 1996) 204.

[5] William L. Lane, The Gospel of Mark, The New International Commentary of the New Testament (Grand Rapids, MI: William B. Eerdmans Publishing, 1974) 186.

[6] David E. Garland, Mark, The NIV Application Commentary Series (Grand Rapids, MI: Zondervan, 1996) 206.

[7] David E. Garland, Mark, The NIV Application Commentary Series (Grand Rapids, MI: Zondervan, 1996) 207.

[8] David E. Garland, Mark, The NIV Application Commentary Series (Grand Rapids, MI: Zondervan, 1996) 220.

[9] David E. Garland, Mark, The NIV Application Commentary Series (Grand Rapids, MI: Zondervan, 1996) 224 – 225.

[10] David E. Garland, Mark, The NIV Application Commentary Series (Grand Rapids, MI: Zondervan, 1996) 225.

[11] David E. Garland, Mark, The NIV Application Commentary Series (Grand Rapids, MI: Zondervan, 1996) 221.

[12] David E. Garland, Mark, The NIV Application Commentary Series (Grand Rapids, MI: Zondervan, 1996) 221.

Be Sociable, Share!
  • more Mark 5 Commentary

4 Responses to “Mark 5 Commentary”

  1. pamela cryer says:

    awesome stated the facts clearly god bless

  2. pamela cryer says:

    God bless you the explanation here was awesome

  3. Caren says:

    thank you. I have been enlightened. your comments brought out new aspects that i have not seen before.

  4. Peter says:

    Just too good an explanation. Wish I could read the commentaries on all chapters

Leave a Response