Mark 12:38

Beware of the scribes (blepete apo twn grammatewn). Jesus now turns to the multitudes and to his disciples ( Matthew 23:1 ) and warns them against the scribes and the Pharisees while they are still there to hear his denunciation. The scribes were the professional teachers of the current Judaism and were nearly all Pharisees. Mark ( Mark 14:38-40 ) gives a mere summary sketch of this bold and terrific indictment as preserved in Matthew 23:1 ff. in words that fairly blister today. Luke 20:45-47 follows Mark closely. See Matthew 8:15 for this same use of blepete apo with the ablative. It is usually called a translation-Hebraism, a usage not found with blepw in the older Greek. But the papyri give it, a vivid vernacular idiom. "Beware of the Jews" (blepe saton apo twn Ioudaiwn, Berl. G. U. 1079. A.D. 41). See Robertson, Grammar, p. 577. The pride of the pompous scribes is itemized by Mark: To walk in long robes (stolai), stoles, the dress of dignitaries like kings and priests. Salutations in the marketplaces (aspasmou en tai agorai), where the people could see their dignity recognized.

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