Mark 8:34 MEANING

Mark 8:34
(34-38) And when he had called the people.--See Notes on Matthew 16:24-28. The "calling the people," or better, the multitude, to hear what involved the apparent failure of His mission announced in the preceding verses is an addition to St. Matthew's narrative. It is confirmed by St. Luke's "He said unto all" (Luke 9:23).

Verse 34. - He called unto him the multitude with his disciples. This shows that there was an interval between what had just taken place and what is now recorded. Our Lord now, without any further special reference to St. Peter, delivers a lesson of universal application; although, no doubt, he had Peter in his mind. If any man would (εἴ τις θέλει) come after me, let him deny himself, and take up his cross, and follow me. This self-denial ought to extend to everything, even to life itself, which we ought to be willing to resign, if need be, for the sake of Christ. Take up his cross. It is as though he said, "Let him take up his cross, as I have borne my cross, that I might be the standard-bearer and Leader of all cross-bearers - I, who carried the cross on which I was to be crucified to the mount of Calvary." St. Luke (Luke 9:23) adds the words (καθ ἡμέραν), "daily:" "let him take up his cross daily;" thus showing that "every day," and often "at every hour," something occurs which it becomes us to bear patiently and bravely, and so on continually through our whole life. He takes up his cross who is crucified to the world. But he to whom the world is crucified follows his crucified Lord. This cross assumes various forms; such as persecution and martyrdom, affliction and sorrow of whatever kind, appointed by God; temptations of Satan, permitted by God for our trial, to increase our humility and virtue, and to make brighter our crown.

8:34-38 Frequent notice is taken of the great flocking there was to Christ for help in various cases. All are concerned to know this, if they expect him to heal their souls. They must not indulge the ease of the body. As the happiness of heaven with Christ, is enough to make up for the loss of life itself for him, so the gain of all the world in sin, will not make up for the ruin of the soul by sin. And there is a day coming, when the cause of Christ will appear as glorious, as some now think it mean and contemptible. May we think of that season, and view every earthly object as we shall do at that great day.And when he had called the people unto him,.... Who, it seems, followed him out of Galilee, from Bethsaida, and these parts; for it was in the way from thence to Caesarea Philippi, that Christ had this conversation with his disciples; who walked together alone, the multitude following at some distance; and the private conversation being ended, Christ called, or beckoned to the people, to come nearer to him:

with his disciples also; for what he was about to say, concerned them both:

whosoever will come after me; in a spiritual sense, as this multitude did in a natural one, and which is the same as to be a disciple of his:

let him deny himself, and take up his cross, and follow me; signifying, that his followers must deny themselves of worldly advantages, and suffer many things, as well as he, which he had been but just before acquainting his disciples with; See Gill on Matthew 16:24.

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