Mark 9:33

Who Is the Greatest?

33 And 1they came to Capernaum. And when he was in the house 2he asked them, "What were you discussing on the way?"

Mark 9:33 Meaning and Commentary

Mark 9:33

And he came to Capernaum
Where he met with the collectors of the tribute money, and paid it to them, as related by Matthew, ( Matthew 17:24 ) , though Mark takes no notice of it. The Vulgate Latin and the Syriac versions, read in the plural number, "they came"; Christ and his twelve apostles; and which is the sense of the words, read in the singular number; for Christ came not alone, but with his disciples:

and being in the house;
of Simon and Andrew, very likely where he used to be when at Capernaum:

he asked them, what was it that ye disputed among yourselves by the
Whilst in their journey from Caesarea Philippi, to Galilee; or as they travelled through the parts of Galilee to Capernaum. This question Christ put, not as ignorant of what had passed among them, but in order to have the case laid before him; that he might reprove them for their pride and ambition, and have an opportunity of teaching them humility, and of informing them of the nature of his kingdom, and subjects; concerning which, they had entertained very wrong notions. The phrase "among yourselves", is omitted in the Vulgate Latin and Arabic versions, but stands in the Syriac, Persic, and Ethiopic.

Mark 9:33 In-Context

31 for he was teaching his disciples, saying to them, "The Son of Man is going to be delivered into the hands of men, and they will kill him. And when he is killed, after three days he will rise."
32 But they did not understand the saying, and were afraid to ask him.
33 And they came to Capernaum. And when he was in the house he asked them, "What were you discussing on the way?"
34 But they kept silent, for on the way they had argued with one another about who was the greatest.
35 And he sat down and called the twelve. And he said to them, "If anyone would be first, he must be last of all and servant of all."

Cross References 2

  • 1. Matthew 17:24
  • 2. For ver. 33-37, see Matthew 18:1-5; Luke 9:46-48; [Mark 10:35-45]
The English Standard Version is published with the permission of Good News Publishers.