Baker Academic Library: Mark 14:60-62

This is the first of a new series of posts on the blog in which we highlight the many high-quality reference and commentary titles available from Baker Academic. For each of these posts we will choose a passage from Scripture or theological topic and share some quotes from several of our relevant books.

Today we are focusing on Mark 14:60-62 (ESV):

And the high priest stood up in the midst and asked Jesus, “Have you no answer to make? What is it that these men testify against you?” But he remained silent and made no answer. Again the high priest asked him, “Are you the Christ, the Son of the Blessed?” And Jesus said, “I am, and you will see the Son of Man seated at the right hand of Power, and coming with the clouds of heaven.”

Mary Ann Beavis, Mark (PAIDEIA; 2011), pp. 219-20:

The account of the trial before the Sanhedrin is the first of two trial narratives in Mark, the first before the Jewish council (14:55-65) and the second before the Roman prefect (15:1-15). Of the two proceedings, only the Roman governor had the legal authority to impose the death penalty. The theme of both trial narratives is that the charges against Jesus are fabricated and that Jesus is unjustly sentenced and executed on the basis of false accusations. […][F]or Mark, the first trial, in which Jesus, the son of man (14:62), is confronted by the chief priests, scribes, and elders (14:53) and is proclaimed as deserving of death (14:65), is the one that fulfills the Passion predictions that inevitably must come to pass (8:31; 9:31; 10:32-34).

Mary Healy, The Gospel of Mark (CCSS; 2008), p. 299:

Seeking to ensnare Jesus in his own speech, as the Pharisees and Herodians have attempted previously (12:13), the high priest rises to demand:  Have you no answer? Jesus knows that to rebut the trumped up charges would be futile. His silence evokes the Suffering Servant in Isaiah, who “though he was harshly treated … submitted and opened not his mouth; Like a lamb led to the slaughter or a sheep before the shearers, he was silent and opened not his mouth (Isa 53:7).”

Morna Hooker, The Gospel according to Saint Mark (BNTC; 1991, reprint 2011), p. 359:

The high priest’s questions to Jesus are manifestly absurd, since the charge brought against him has collapsed: they make sense, however, in the Matthaean context, where two witnesses are found who agree, and for this reason the passage lends some support to the belief that Matthew was written before Mark. If we accept Markan priority, then the discrepancy can be explained by supposing that v.59 has been added to the story at some state – an addition which is either subsequent to Matthew’s editing of the material, or which he chose to ignore.

Robert H. Stein, Mark (BECNT; 2008), p. 684:

[Jesus’s] answer contains two parts. The first is “I am” (ἐγώ ἐιμι, ego eimi), and with this the “messianic secret” in Mark comes to an end. Both Matthew (26:64) and Luke (22:70) agree that Jesus’s reply, while affirmative[…], is more reticent. […]The second part of Jesus’s reply consists of two OT texts. The first (Ps. 110:1 [109:1 LXX]) borrows the title “Son of Man” from the second (Dan. 7:13) […] This relates to the exaltation of Christ in his resurrection (cf. Rom. 1:4; Acts 2:32-33; 5:30-31; etc.) to the right hand of “Power” (δυνάμεως, dynameos), a circumlocution for God in which Jesus follows the lead of the high priest, who in his question avoided uttering the name of God by using “Blessed.”

Frederick Murphy, Apocalypticism in the Bible and its World (2012), p. 237:

When Jesus is on trial, the high priest asks him, “Are you the Messiah, the Son of the Blessed One?” (14:61). Jesus answers, “I am; and ‘you will see the Son of Man seated at the right hand of the Power,’ and ‘coming with the clouds of heaven'” (14:62). The single quotation marks here indicate the translator’s decision that the verse quotes Dan. 7 and Ps. 110. As in Dan. 7, the Son of Man comes with the clouds of heaven. As in Ps. 110:1, the Son of Man sits at God’s right hand. Jesus is both the Son of Man who is being condemned to death and the Son of Man who will come at the eschaton to vindicate his own ministry. The two go together and explain one another.

Rikk E. Watts, “Mark,” in Commentary on the New Testament Use of the Old Testament (eds. G.K. Beale & D.A. Carson; 2007), p. 235:

Eschatologically, Jesus’ appeal to these two texts suggests that the crisis moment in Israel’s history has come. The christological implications are teh same: from early on in Mark’s Gospel Jesus’ astounding authority has been clear. Here, in another climactic moment, he is faithful Israel’s representative messianic Son of Man sharing God’s authority. By the same token, ecclesiologically, those who follow him constitute the authentic remnent of Israel, and the temple authorities, in opposing him, have ironically put themselves in the same category as Daniel’s fourth beast and little horn.