Mark 11 Bible Commentary

John Wesley’s Explanatory Notes

(Read all of Mark 11)

Verse 11

[11] And Jesus entered into Jerusalem, and into the temple: and when he had looked round about upon all things, and now the eventide was come, he went out unto Bethany with the twelve.

Matthew 21:10,17.

Verse 12

[12] And on the morrow, when they were come from Bethany, he was hungry:

Matthew 21:18.

Verse 13

[13] And seeing a fig tree afar off having leaves, he came, if haply he might find any thing thereon: and when he came to it, he found nothing but leaves; for the time of figs was not yet.

For it was not a season of figs — It was net (as we say) a good year for figs; at least not for that early sort, which alone was ripe so soon in the spring. If we render the words, It was not the season of figs, that is, the time of gathering them in, it may mean, The season was not yet: and so (inclosing the words in a parenthesis, And coming to it, he found nothing but leaves) it may refer to the former part of the sentence, and may be considered as the reason of Christ's going to see whether there were any figs on this tree. Some who also read that clause in a parenthesis, translate the hollowing words, for where he was, it was the season of figs. And it is certain, this meaning of the words suits best with the great design of the parable, which was to reprove the Jewish Church for its unfruitfulness at that very season, when fruit might best be expected from them.

Verse 15

[15] And they come to Jerusalem: and Jesus went into the temple, and began to cast out them that sold and bought in the temple, and overthrew the tables of the moneychangers, and the seats of them that sold doves;

Matthew 21:12; Luke 19:45.

Verse 16

[16] And would not suffer that any man should carry any vessel through the temple.

He suffered not that any should carry a vessel through the temple — So strong notions had our Lord, of even relative holiness! And of the regard due to those places (as well as times) that are peculiarly dedicated to God.

Verse 17

[17] And he taught, saying unto them, Is it not written, My house shall be called of all nations the house of prayer? but ye have made it a den of thieves.

Isaiah 56:7; Jeremiah 7:11.

Verse 18

[18] And the scribes and chief priests heard it, and sought how they might destroy him: for they feared him, because all the people was astonished at his doctrine.

They feared him — That is, they were afraid to take him by violence, lest it should raise a tumult; because all the people was astonished at his teaching - Both at the excellence of his discourse, and at the majesty and authority with which he taught.

Verse 20

[20] And in the morning, as they passed by, they saw the fig tree dried up from the roots.

Matthew 21:20.

Verse 22

[22] And Jesus answering saith unto them, Have faith in God.

Have faith in God — And who could find fault, if the Creator and Proprietor of all things were to destroy, by a single word of his mouth, a thousand of his inanimate creatures, were it only to imprint this important lesson more deeply on one immortal spirit?

Verse 25

[25] And when ye stand praying, forgive, if ye have ought against any: that your Father also which is in heaven may forgive you your trespasses.

When ye stand praying — Standing was their usual posture when they prayed.

Forgive — And on this condition, ye shall have whatever you ask, with. out wrath or doubting. Matthew 6:14.

Verse 27

[27] And they come again to Jerusalem: and as he was walking in the temple, there come to him the chief priests, and the scribes, and the elders,

Matthew 21:23; Luke 20:1.