Mark 8:12

He sighed deeply in his spirit (anastenaxa twi pneumati). The only instance of this compound in the N.T. though in the LXX. The uncompounded form occurs in Mark 7:34 and it is common enough. The preposition ana- intensifies the meaning of the verb (perfective use). "The sigh seemed to come, as we say, from the bottom of his heart, the Lord's human spirit was stirred to its depths" (Swete). Jesus resented the settled prejudice of the Pharisees (and now Sadducees also) against him and his work. There shall no sign be given unto this generation (ei doqhsetai th geneai tauth shmeion). Matthew 16:4 has simply ou doqhsetai, plain negative with the future passive indicative. Mark has ei instead of ou, which is technically a conditional clause with the conclusion unexpressed (Robertson, Grammar, p. 1024), really aposiopesis in imitation of the Hebrew use of im. This is the only instance in the N.T. except in quotations from the LXX ( Hebrews 3:11 ; Hebrews 4:3 Hebrews 4:5 ). It is very common in the LXX. The rabbis were splitting hairs over the miracles of Jesus as having a possible natural explanation (as some critics do today) even if by the power of Beelzebub, and those not of the sky (from heaven) which would be manifested from God. So they put up this fantastic test to Jesus which he deeply resents. Matthew 16:4 adds "but the sign of Jonah" mentioned already by Jesus on a previous occasion ( Matthew 12:39-41 ) at more length and to be mentioned again ( Luke 11:32 ). But the mention of the sign of Jonah was "an absolute refusal of signs in their sense" (Bruce). And when he did rise from the dead on the third day, the Sanhedrin refused to be convinced (see Acts 3 to 5).

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