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1 Chronicles 16 New English Translation (NET Bible)

David Leads in Worship

16 They brought the ark of God and put it in the middle of the tent David had pitched for it. Then they offered burnt sacrifices and peace offerings[a] before God. When David finished offering burnt sacrifices and peace offerings, he pronounced a blessing over the people in the Lord’s name. He then handed out to each Israelite man and woman a loaf of bread, a date cake, and a raisin cake. He appointed some of the Levites to serve before the ark of the Lord, to offer prayers, songs of thanks, and hymns to the Lord God of Israel. Asaph was the leader and Zechariah second-in-command, followed by Jeiel, Shemiramoth, Jehiel, Mattithiah, Eliab, Benaiah, Obed-Edom, and Jeiel. They were to play stringed instruments, Asaph was to sound the cymbals, and the priests Benaiah and Jahaziel were to blow trumpets regularly before the ark of God’s covenant.

David Thanks God

That day David first gave to Asaph and his colleagues this song of thanks to the Lord.

Give thanks to the Lord!
Call on his name!
Make known his accomplishments among the nations.
Sing to him! Make music to him!
Tell about all his miraculous deeds.
10 Boast about his holy name.
Let the hearts of those who seek the Lord rejoice.
11 Seek the Lord and the strength he gives.
Seek his presence[b] continually!
12 Recall the miraculous deeds he performed,
his mighty acts and the judgments he decreed,[c]
13 O children[d] of Israel, God’s[e] servant,
you descendants of Jacob, God’s[f] chosen ones!
14 He is the Lord our God;
he carries out judgment throughout the earth.[g]
15 Remember[h] continually his covenantal decree,
the promise he made[i] to a thousand generations—
16 the promise[j] he made to Abraham,
the promise he made by oath to Isaac![k]
17 He gave it to Jacob as a decree,
to Israel as a lasting promise,[l]
18 saying, “To you I will give the land of Canaan
as the portion of your inheritance.”
19 When they were few in number,
just a very few, and foreign residents within it,
20 they wandered from nation to nation,
and from one kingdom to another.[m]
21 He let no one oppress them;
he disciplined kings for their sake,
22 saying,[n] “Don’t touch my anointed ones!
Don’t harm my prophets!”
23 Sing to the Lord, all the earth!
Announce every day[o] how he delivers.
24 Tell the nations about his splendor,
tell[p] all the nations about his miraculous deeds.
25 For the Lord is great and certainly worthy of praise,
he is more awesome than[q] all gods.
26 For all the gods of the nations are worthless,[r]
but the Lord made the heavens.[s]
27 Majestic splendor emanates from him,[t]
he is the source of strength and joy.[u]
28 Ascribe to the Lord, O families of the nations,
ascribe to the Lord splendor and strength!
29 Ascribe to the Lord the splendor he deserves![v]
Bring an offering and enter his presence!
Worship the Lord in holy attire![w]
30 Tremble before him, all the earth!
The world is established, it cannot be moved.
31 Let the heavens rejoice, and the earth be happy!
Let the nations say,[x] “The Lord reigns!”
32 Let the sea and everything in it shout!
Let the fields and everything in them celebrate!
33 Then let the trees of the forest shout with joy before the Lord,
for he comes to judge the earth!
34 Give thanks to the Lord, for he is good
and his loyal love endures.[y]
35 Say this prayer:[z] “Deliver us, O God who delivers us!
Gather us! Rescue us from the nations!
Then we will give thanks[aa] to your holy name,
and boast about your praiseworthy deeds.”[ab]
36 May the Lord God of Israel be praised,
in the future and forevermore.[ac]
Then all the people said, “We agree![ad] Praise the Lord.”

David Appoints Worship Leaders

37 David[ae] left Asaph and his colleagues there before the ark of the Lord’s covenant to serve before the ark regularly and fulfill each day’s requirements,[af] 38 including Obed-Edom and sixty-eight colleagues. Obed-Edom son of Jeduthun and Hosah were gatekeepers. 39 Zadok the priest and his fellow priests served[ag] before the Lord’s tabernacle at the worship center[ah] in Gibeon, 40 regularly offering burnt sacrifices to the Lord on the altar for burnt sacrifice, morning and evening, according to what is prescribed in the law of the Lord which he charged Israel to observe.[ai] 41 Joining them were Heman, Jeduthun, and the rest of those chosen and designated by name to give thanks to the Lord. (For his loyal love endures!)[aj] 42 Heman and Jeduthun were in charge of the music, including the trumpets, cymbals, and the other musical instruments used in praising God. The sons of Jeduthun guarded the entrance.[ak]

43 Then all the people returned to their homes, and David went to pronounce a blessing on his family.[al]


  1. 1 Chronicles 16:1 tn Or “tokens of peace”; NIV “fellowship offerings.”
  2. 1 Chronicles 16:11 tn Heb “face.”
  3. 1 Chronicles 16:12 tn Heb “and the judgments of his mouth.”
  4. 1 Chronicles 16:13 tn Heb “seed.”
  5. 1 Chronicles 16:13 tn Heb “his”; the referent (God) has been specified in the translation for clarity.
  6. 1 Chronicles 16:13 tn Heb “his”; the referent (God) has been specified in the translation for clarity.
  7. 1 Chronicles 16:14 tn Heb “in all the earth [are] his judgments.”
  8. 1 Chronicles 16:15 tn The Hebrew text has a masculine plural imperative, addressed to the people. Some LXX mss harmonize the wording here to Ps 105:8, which has זָכַר (zakhar), the perfect third masculine singular form of the verb, “He (the Lord) remembers” (so NIV; NEB reads “He called to mind his covenant”).
  9. 1 Chronicles 16:15 tn Heb “[the] word he commanded.” The text refers here to God’s unconditional covenantal promise to Abraham and the patriarchs, as vv. 16-18 make clear.
  10. 1 Chronicles 16:16 tn Heb “which.”
  11. 1 Chronicles 16:16 tn Heb “his oath to Isaac.”
  12. 1 Chronicles 16:17 tn Or “eternal covenant.”
  13. 1 Chronicles 16:20 tn Heb “and from a kingdom to another people.”
  14. 1 Chronicles 16:22 tn The word “saying” is supplied in the translation for clarification and for stylistic reasons.
  15. 1 Chronicles 16:23 tn Heb “from day to day.”
  16. 1 Chronicles 16:24 tn The verb “tell” is understood by ellipsis (note the preceding line).
  17. 1 Chronicles 16:25 tn Or “feared above.”
  18. 1 Chronicles 16:26 tn The Hebrew word אֱלִילִים (ʾelilim, “worthless”) sounds like אֱלֹהִים (ʾelohim, “gods”). The sound play draws attention to the statement. Many modern English translations render this term as “idols” here.
  19. 1 Chronicles 16:26 tn Or “the sky” (also in v. 31). The Hebrew term שָׁמַיִם (shamayim) may be translated “heaven(s)” or “sky” depending on the context.
  20. 1 Chronicles 16:27 tn Heb “majesty and splendor [are] before him.”
  21. 1 Chronicles 16:27 tn Heb “strength and joy [are] in his place.”
  22. 1 Chronicles 16:29 tn Heb “the splendor of [i.e., due] his name.”
  23. 1 Chronicles 16:29 tn Or “in holy splendor.”
  24. 1 Chronicles 16:31 tn Heb “let them say among the nations.”
  25. 1 Chronicles 16:34 tn Or “is eternal.”
  26. 1 Chronicles 16:35 tn The words “this prayer” are supplied in the translation for clarity and for stylistic reasons.
  27. 1 Chronicles 16:35 tn Heb “to give thanks.” The infinitive construct indicates result after the imperative.
  28. 1 Chronicles 16:35 tn Heb “to boast in your praise.”
  29. 1 Chronicles 16:36 tn Heb “from everlasting to everlasting.”
  30. 1 Chronicles 16:36 tn This is the Hebrew term אָמֵן (ʾamen, “surely”), traditionally transliterated “amen.”
  31. 1 Chronicles 16:37 tn Heb “he”; the referent (David) has been specified in the translation for clarity.
  32. 1 Chronicles 16:37 tn Heb “according to the matter of the day in its day.”
  33. 1 Chronicles 16:39 tn The word “served” is supplied in the translation for clarity and for stylistic reasons.
  34. 1 Chronicles 16:39 tn Or “high place.”
  35. 1 Chronicles 16:40 tn Heb “which he laid as a charge upon Israel.”
  36. 1 Chronicles 16:41 tn Perhaps this refers to the refrain of their songs of praise (see Ps 136). In this case one could translate, “to give thanks to the Lord with songs using the refrain, ‘For his loyal love endures.’”
  37. 1 Chronicles 16:42 tn Heb “and with them, Heman and Jeduthun, trumpets and cymbals for sounding, and the instrument of song of God, and the sons of Jeduthun [were] at the gate.”
  38. 1 Chronicles 16:43 tn Heb “to bless his house.” Elsewhere when “house” is the object of “bless,” it refers to a household or family. See, for example, 1 Chr 13:14; 17:27. However, since בֵּית (bet, “house”) refers to a literal house or home earlier in the verse and to David’s palace in 17:1, one might translate here, “David went to pronounce a blessing on [i.e., dedicate] his house [i.e., palace].”
New English Translation (NET)

NET Bible® copyright ©1996-2017 by Biblical Studies Press, L.L.C. http://netbible.com All rights reserved.

Psalm 45 New English Translation (NET Bible)

Psalm 45[a]

For the music director, according to the tune of “Lilies”;[b] by the Korahites, a well-written poem,[c] a love song.

45 My heart is stirred by a beautiful song.[d]
I say, “I have composed this special song[e] for the king;
my tongue is as skilled as the stylus of an experienced scribe.”[f]
You are the most handsome of all men.[g]
You speak in an impressive and fitting manner.[h]
For this reason[i] God grants you continual blessings.[j]
Strap your sword to your thigh, O warrior.[k]
Appear in your majestic splendor.[l]
Appear in your majesty and be victorious.[m]
Ride forth for the sake of what is right,[n]
on behalf of justice.[o]
Then your right hand will accomplish mighty acts.[p]
Your arrows are sharp
and penetrate the hearts of the king’s enemies.
Nations fall at your feet.[q]
Your throne,[r] O God, is permanent.[s]
The scepter[t] of your kingdom is a scepter of justice.
You love[u] justice and hate evil.[v]
For this reason God, your God,[w] has anointed you[x]
with the oil of joy,[y] elevating you above your companions.[z]
All your garments are perfumed with[aa] myrrh, aloes, and cassia.
From the luxurious palaces[ab] comes the music of stringed instruments that makes you happy.[ac]
Princesses[ad] are among your honored women.[ae]
Your bride[af] stands at your right hand, wearing jewelry made with gold from Ophir.[ag]
10 Listen, O princess.[ah]
Observe and pay attention![ai]
Forget your homeland[aj] and your family.[ak]
11 Then[al] the king will be attracted by[am] your beauty.
After all, he is your master. Submit[an] to him.[ao]
12 Rich people from Tyre
will seek your favor by bringing a gift.[ap]
13 The princess[aq] looks absolutely magnificent,[ar]
decked out in pearls and clothed in a brocade trimmed with gold.[as]
14 In embroidered robes she is escorted to the king.
Her attendants, the maidens of honor who follow her,
are led before you.[at]
15 They are bubbling with joy as they walk in procession
and enter the royal palace.[au]
16 Your[av] sons will carry on[aw] the dynasty of your ancestors;[ax]
you will make them princes throughout the land.
17 I will proclaim your greatness through the coming years,[ay]
then the nations will praise you[az] forever.


  1. Psalm 45:1 sn Psalm 45. This is a romantic poem celebrating the Davidic king’s marriage to a lovely princess. The psalmist praises the king for his military prowess and commitment to justice, urges the bride to be loyal to the king, and anticipates that the marriage will be blessed with royal offspring.
  2. Psalm 45:1 tn Heb “according to lilies.” “Lilies” may be a tune title or musical style, suggestive of romantic love. The imagery of a “lily” appears frequently in the Song of Songs in a variety of contexts (see 2:1-2, 16; 4:5; 5:13; 6:2-3; 7:2).
  3. Psalm 45:1 tn The meaning of the Hebrew term מַשְׂכִּיל (maskil) is uncertain. See the note on the phrase “well-written song” in the superscription of Ps 42.
  4. Psalm 45:1 tn Heb “[with] a good word.” The “good word” probably refers here to the song that follows.
  5. Psalm 45:1 tn Heb “my works [are] for a king.” The plural “works” may here indicate degree, referring to the special musical composition that follows.
  6. Psalm 45:1 tn Heb “my tongue [is] a stylus of a skillful scribe.” Words flow from the psalmist’s tongue just as they do from a scribe’s stylus.
  7. Psalm 45:2 tn Heb “you are handsome from the sons of man.” The preposition “from” is used in a comparative (“more than”) sense. The peculiar verb form יָפְיָפִיתָ (yafyafita) is probably the result of dittography of יפ (yod-pe) and should be emended to יָפִיתָ (yafita). See GKC 152 §55.e.
  8. Psalm 45:2 tn Heb “favor is poured out on your lips.” “Lips” probably stands by metonymy for the king’s speech. Some interpret the Hebrew term חֵן (khen) as referring here to “gracious (i.e., kind and polite) speech”, but the word probably refers more generally to “attractive” speech that is impressively articulated and fitting for the occasion. For other instances of the term being used of speech, see Prov 22:11 and Eccl 10:12.
  9. Psalm 45:2 tn Or “this demonstrates.” The construction עַל־כֵּן (ʿal ken, “therefore”) usually indicates what logically follows from a preceding statement. However, here it may infer the cause from the effect, indicating the underlying basis or reason for what precedes (see BDB 487 s.v. I כֵּן 3.f; C. A. Briggs and E. G. Briggs, Psalms [ICC], 1:386).
  10. Psalm 45:2 tn Or “blesses you forever.” Here “bless” means to “endue with the power and skill to rule effectively,” as the following verses indicate.
  11. Psalm 45:3 tn Or “mighty one.”
  12. Psalm 45:3 tn The Hebrew text has simply, “your majesty and your splendor,” which probably refers to the king’s majestic splendor when he appears in full royal battle regalia.
  13. Psalm 45:4 tn Heb “and your majesty, be successful.” The syntax is awkward. The phrase “and your majesty” at the beginning of the verse may be accidentally repeated (dittography); it appears at the end of v. 3.
  14. Psalm 45:4 tn Or “for the sake of truth.”
  15. Psalm 45:4 tc The precise meaning of the MT is uncertain. The form עַנְוָה (ʿanvah) occurs only here. One could emend the text to עֲנָוָה וְצֶדֶק (ʿanavah vetsedeq, “[for the sake of truth], humility, and justice”). In this case “humility” would perhaps allude to the king’s responsibility to “serve” his people by promoting justice (cf. NIV “in behalf of truth, humility and righteousness”). The present translation assumes an emendation to יַעַן (yaʿan, “because; on account of”) which would form a suitable parallel to עַל־דְּבַר (ʿal devar, “because; for the sake of”) in the preceding line.
  16. Psalm 45:4 tn Heb “and your right hand will teach you mighty acts”; or “and may your right hand teach you mighty acts.” After the imperatives in the first half of the verse, the prefixed verbal form with vav (ו) conjunctive likely indicates purpose (“so that your right hand might teach you mighty acts”) or result (see the present translation). The “right hand” here symbolizes the king’s military strength. His right hand will “teach” him mighty acts by performing them and thereby causing him to experience their magnificence.
  17. Psalm 45:5 tn Heb “your arrows are sharp—peoples beneath you fall—in the heart of the enemies of the king.” The choppy style reflects the poet’s excitement.
  18. Psalm 45:6 sn The king’s throne here symbolizes his rule.
  19. Psalm 45:6 tn Or “forever and ever.”sn O God. The king is clearly the addressee here, as in vv. 2-5 and 7-9. Rather than taking the statement at face value, many prefer to emend the text because the concept of deifying the earthly king is foreign to ancient Israelite thinking (cf. NEB “your throne is like God’s throne, eternal”). However, it is preferable to retain the text and take this statement as another instance of the royal hyperbole that permeates the royal psalms. Because the Davidic king is God’s vice-regent on earth, the psalmist addresses him as if he were God incarnate. God energizes the king for battle and accomplishes justice through him. A similar use of hyperbole appears in Isa 9:6, where the ideal Davidic king of the eschaton is given the title “Mighty God” (see the note on this phrase there). Ancient Near Eastern art and literature picture gods training kings for battle, bestowing special weapons, and intervening in battle. According to Egyptian propaganda, the Hittites described Rameses II as follows: “No man is he who is among us, It is Seth great-of-strength, Baal in person; Not deeds of man are these his doings, They are of one who is unique” (see Miriam Lichtheim, Ancient Egyptian Literature, 2:67). Ps 45:6 and Isa 9:6 probably envision a similar kind of response when friends and foes alike look at the Davidic king in full battle regalia. When the king’s enemies oppose him on the battlefield, they are, as it were, fighting against God himself.
  20. Psalm 45:6 sn The king’s scepter symbolizes his royal authority.
  21. Psalm 45:7 sn To love justice means to actively promote it.
  22. Psalm 45:7 sn To hate evil means to actively oppose it.
  23. Psalm 45:7 tn For other examples of the repetition of Elohim, “God,” see Pss 43:4; 48:8, 14; 50:7; 51:14; 67:7. Because the name Yahweh (“Lord”) is relatively rare in Pss 42-83, where the name Elohim (“God”) predominates, this compounding of Elohim may be an alternative form of the compound name “the Lord my/your/our God.”
  24. Psalm 45:7 sn Anointed you. When read in the light of the preceding context, the anointing is most naturally taken as referring to the king’s coronation. However, the following context (vv. 8-9) focuses on the wedding ceremony, so some prefer to see this anointing as part of the king’s preparations for the wedding celebration. Perhaps the reference to his anointing at his coronation facilitates the transition to the description of the wedding, for the king was also anointed on this occasion.
  25. Psalm 45:7 sn The phrase oil of joy alludes to the fact that the coronation of the king, which was ritually accomplished by anointing his head with olive oil, was a time of great celebration and renewed hope. (If one understands the anointing in conjunction with the wedding ceremony, the “joy” would be that associated with the marriage.) The phrase “oil of joy” also appears in Isa 61:3, where mourners are granted “oil of joy” in conjunction with their deliverance from oppression.
  26. Psalm 45:7 tn Heb “from your companions.” The “companions” are most naturally understood as others in the royal family or, more generally, as the king’s countrymen.sn Verses 6-7 are quoted in Heb 1:8-9, where they are applied to Jesus.
  27. Psalm 45:8 tn The words “perfumed with” are supplied in the translation for clarification.
  28. Psalm 45:8 tn Heb “the palaces of ivory.” The phrase “palaces of ivory” refers to palaces that had ivory panels and furniture decorated with ivory inlays. Such decoration with ivory was characteristic of a high level of luxury. See 1 Kgs 22:39 and Amos 3:15.
  29. Psalm 45:8 tn Heb “from the palaces of ivory stringed instrument[s] make you happy.”
  30. Psalm 45:9 tn Heb “daughters of kings.”
  31. Psalm 45:9 tn Heb “valuable ones.” The form is feminine plural.
  32. Psalm 45:9 tn This rare Hebrew noun apparently refers to the king’s bride, who will soon be queen (see Neh 2:6). The Aramaic cognate is used of royal wives in Dan 5:2-3, 23.
  33. Psalm 45:9 tn Heb “a consort stands at your right hand, gold of Ophir.”sn Gold from Ophir is also mentioned in Isa 13:12 and Job 28:16. The precise location of Ophir is uncertain; Arabia, India, East Africa, and South Africa have all been suggested as options.
  34. Psalm 45:10 tn Heb “daughter.” The Hebrew noun בַּת (bat, “daughter”) can sometimes refer to a young woman in a general sense (see H. Haag, TDOT 2:334).sn Listen, O princess. The poet now addresses the bride.
  35. Psalm 45:10 tn Heb “see and turn your ear.” The verb רָאָה (raʾah, “see”) is used here of mental observation.
  36. Psalm 45:10 tn Heb “your people.” This reference to the “people” of the princess suggests she was a foreigner. Perhaps the marriage was arranged as part of a political alliance between Israel (or Judah) and a neighboring state. The translation “your homeland” reflects such a situation.
  37. Psalm 45:10 tn Heb “and the house of your father.”
  38. Psalm 45:11 tn After the preceding imperatives, the jussive verbal form with vav (ו) conjunctive is best understood as introducing a purpose (“so that the king might desire your beauty”) or result clause (see the present translation and cf. also NASB). The point seems to be this: The bride might tend to be homesick, which in turn might cause her to mourn and diminish her attractiveness. She needs to overcome this temptation to unhappiness and enter into the marriage with joy. Then the king will be drawn to her natural beauty.
  39. Psalm 45:11 tn Or “desire.”
  40. Psalm 45:11 tn Or “bow down.”
  41. Psalm 45:11 sn Submit to him. The poet here makes the point that the young bride is obligated to bring pleasure to her new husband. Though a foreign concept to modern western culture, this was accepted as the cultural norm in the psalmist’s day.
  42. Psalm 45:12 tn Heb “and a daughter of Tyre with a gift, your face they will appease, the rich of people.” The phrase “daughter of Tyre” occurs only here in the OT. It could be understood as addressed to the bride, indicating she was a Phoenician (cf. NEB). However, often in the OT the word “daughter,” when collocated with the name of a city or country, is used to personify the referent (see, for example, “Daughter Zion” in Ps 9:14, and “Daughter Babylon” in Ps 137:8). If that is the case here, then “Daughter Tyre” identifies the city-state of Tyre as the place from which the rich people come (cf. NRSV). The idiom “appease the face” refers to seeking one’s favor (see Exod 32:11; 1 Sam 13:12; 1 Kgs 13:6; 2 Kgs 13:4; 2 Chr 33:12; Job 11:19; Ps 119:58; Prov 19:6; Jer 26:19; Dan 9:13; Zech 7:2; 8:21-22; Mal 1:9).
  43. Psalm 45:13 tn Heb “[the] daughter of a king.”
  44. Psalm 45:13 tn Heb “[is] completely glorious.”
  45. Psalm 45:13 tc Heb “within, from settings of gold, her clothing.” The Hebrew term פְּנִימָה (penimah, “within”), if retained, would go with the preceding line and perhaps refer to the bride being “within” the palace or her bridal chamber (cf. NIV, NRSV). Since the next two lines refer to her attire (see also v. 9b), it is preferable to emend the form to פְּנִינִיהָּ (peniniha, “her pearls”) or to פְּנִינִים (peninim, “pearls”). The mem (מ) prefixed to “settings” is probably dittographic.
  46. Psalm 45:14 tn Heb “virgins after her, her companions, are led to you.” Some emend לָךְ (lakh, “to you”) to לָהּ (lah, “to her,” i.e., the princess), because the princess is now being spoken of in the third person (vv. 13-14a), rather than being addressed directly (as in vv. 10-12). However, the ambiguous suffixed form לָךְ need not be taken as second feminine singular. The suffix can be understood as a pausal second masculine singular form, addressed to the king. The translation assumes this to be the case; note that the king is addressed once more in vv. 16-17, where the second person pronouns are masculine.
  47. Psalm 45:15 tn Heb “they are led with joy and happiness, they enter the house of the king.”
  48. Psalm 45:16 tn The pronoun is second masculine singular, indicating the king is being addressed from this point to the end of the psalm.
  49. Psalm 45:16 tn The prefixed verbal form could be taken as jussive and the statement interpreted as a prayer, “May your sons carry on the dynasty of your ancestors!” The next line could then be taken as a relative clause, “[your sons] whom you will make princes throughout the land.”
  50. Psalm 45:16 tn Heb “in place of your fathers will be your sons.”
  51. Psalm 45:17 tn Heb “I will cause your name to be remembered in every generation and generation.” The cohortative verbal form expresses the poet’s resolve. The king’s “name” stands here for his reputation and character, which the poet praised in vv. 2-7.
  52. Psalm 45:17 sn The nations will praise you. As God’s vice-regent on earth, the king is deserving of such honor and praise.
New English Translation (NET)

NET Bible® copyright ©1996-2017 by Biblical Studies Press, L.L.C. http://netbible.com All rights reserved.

Mark 13 New English Translation (NET Bible)

The Destruction of the Temple

13 Now[a] as Jesus[b] was going out of the temple courts, one of his disciples said to him, “Teacher, look at these tremendous stones and buildings!”[c] Jesus said to him, “Do you see these great buildings? Not one stone will be left on another.[d] All will be torn down!”[e]

Signs of the End of the Age

So[f] while he was sitting on the Mount of Olives opposite the temple, Peter, James, John,[g] and Andrew asked him privately, “Tell us, when will these things[h] happen? And what will be the sign that all these things are about to take place?” Jesus began to say to them, “Watch out[i] that no one misleads you. Many will come in my name, saying, ‘I am he,’[j] and they will mislead many. When you hear of wars and rumors of wars, do not be alarmed. These things must happen, but the end is still to come.[k] For nation will rise up in arms[l] against nation, and kingdom against kingdom. There will be earthquakes in various places, and there will be famines.[m] These are but the beginning of birth pains.

Persecution of Disciples

“You must watch out for yourselves. You will be handed over[n] to councils[o] and beaten in the synagogues.[p] You will stand before governors and kings[q] because of me, as a witness to them. 10 First the gospel must be preached to all nations. 11 When they arrest you and hand you over for trial,[r] do not worry about what to speak. But say whatever is given you at that time,[s] for it is not you speaking, but the Holy Spirit. 12 Brother will hand over brother to death, and a father his child. Children will rise against[t] parents and have them put to death. 13 You will be hated by everyone because of my name.[u] But the one who endures to the end will be saved.[v]

The Abomination of Desolation

14 “But when you see the abomination of desolation[w] standing where it[x] should not be” (let the reader understand),[y] “then those in Judea must flee[z] to the mountains. 15 The one on the roof[aa] must not come down or go inside to take anything out of his house.[ab] 16 The one in the field must not turn back to get his cloak. 17 Woe to those who are pregnant and to those who are nursing their babies in those days! 18 Pray that it may not be in winter. 19 For in those days there will be suffering[ac] unlike anything that has happened[ad] from the beginning of the creation that God created until now, or ever will happen. 20 And if the Lord had not cut short those days, no one would be saved. But because of the elect, whom he chose, he has cut them[ae] short. 21 Then[af] if anyone says to you, ‘Look, here is the Christ!’[ag] or ‘Look, there he is!’ do not believe him. 22 For false messiahs[ah] and false prophets will appear and perform signs and wonders to deceive, if possible, the elect. 23 Be careful! I have told you everything ahead of time.

The Arrival of the Son of Man

24 “But in those days, after that suffering,[ai] the sun will be darkened and the moon will not give its light; 25 the stars will be falling from heaven, and the powers in the heavens will be shaken.[aj] 26 Then everyone[ak] will see the Son of Man arriving in the clouds[al] with great power and glory. 27 Then he will send angels and they will gather his elect from the four winds, from the ends of the earth to the ends of heaven.[am]

The Parable of the Fig Tree

28 “Learn this parable from the fig tree: Whenever its branch becomes tender and puts out its leaves, you know that summer is near. 29 So also you, when you see these things happening, know[an] that he is near, right at the door. 30 I tell you the truth,[ao] this generation[ap] will not pass away until all these things take place. 31 Heaven and earth will pass away, but my words will never pass away.[aq]

Be Ready!

32 “But as for that day or hour no one knows it—neither the angels in heaven, nor the Son[ar]—except the Father. 33 Watch out! Stay alert![as] For you do not know when the time will come. 34 It is like a man going on a journey. He left his house and put his slaves[at] in charge, assigning[au] to each his work, and commanded the doorkeeper to stay alert. 35 Stay alert, then, because you do not know when the owner of the house will return—whether during evening, at midnight, when the rooster crows, or at dawn— 36 or else he might find you asleep when he returns suddenly. 37 What I say to you I say to everyone: Stay alert!”


  1. Mark 13:1 tn Here καί (kai) has been translated as “now” to indicate the transition to a new topic.
  2. Mark 13:1 tn Grk “he”; the referent (Jesus) has been specified in the translation for clarity.
  3. Mark 13:1 sn The Jerusalem temple was widely admired around the world. See Josephus, Ant. 15.11 [15.380-425]; J. W. 5.5 [5.184-227] and Tacitus, History 5.8, who called it “immensely opulent.” Josephus compared it to a beautiful snowcapped mountain.
  4. Mark 13:2 sn With the statement not one stone will be left on another Jesus predicted the total destruction of the temple, something that did occur in a.d. 70.
  5. Mark 13:2 tn Grk “not one stone will be left here on another which will not be thrown down.”
  6. Mark 13:3 tn Here καί (kai) has been translated as “so” to indicate the implied result of previous action(s) in the narrative.
  7. Mark 13:3 tn Grk “and James and John,” but καί (kai) has not been translated since English normally uses a coordinating conjunction only between the last two elements in a series of three or more.
  8. Mark 13:4 sn Both references to these things are plural, so more than the temple’s destruction is in view. The question may presuppose that such a catastrophe signals the end.
  9. Mark 13:5 tn Or “Be on guard.”
  10. Mark 13:6 tn That is, “I am the Messiah.”
  11. Mark 13:7 tn Grk “it is not yet the end.”
  12. Mark 13:8 tn For the translation “rise up in arms” see L&N 55.2.
  13. Mark 13:8 sn See Isa 5:13-14; 13:6-16; Hag 2:6-7; Zech 14:4.
  14. Mark 13:9 tn Grk “They will hand you over.” “They” is an indefinite plural, referring to people in general. The parallel in Matt 10:17 makes this explicit.
  15. Mark 13:9 sn Councils in this context has a non-technical sense referring to local judicial bodies (courts) attached to the Jewish synagogue (cf. BDAG 967 s.v. συνέδριον 1.a). These courts would be responsible for meting out justice and discipline within the Jewish community.
  16. Mark 13:9 sn See the note on synagogue in 1:21.
  17. Mark 13:9 sn These statements look at persecution both from a Jewish context as the mention of councils and synagogues suggests, and from a Gentile one as the reference to governors and kings suggests. Some fulfillment of Jewish persecution can be seen in Acts.
  18. Mark 13:11 tn Or “hand you over into custody,” in particular “as a t.t. of police and courts ‘hand over into [the] custody [of]’” (BDAG 762 s.v. παραδίδωμι 1.b). In context some sort of trial is implied (cf. Luke 12:11).
  19. Mark 13:11 tn Grk “in that hour.”
  20. Mark 13:12 tn Or “will rebel against.”
  21. Mark 13:13 sn See 1 Cor 1:25-31.
  22. Mark 13:13 sn But the one who endures to the end will be saved. Jesus was not claiming here that salvation is by works, because he had already taught that it is by grace (cf. 10:15). He was simply arguing that genuine faith evidences itself in persistence through even the worst of trials.
  23. Mark 13:14 sn The reference to the abomination of desolation is an allusion to Dan 9:27. Though some have seen the fulfillment of Daniel’s prophecy in the actions of Antiochus IV (or a representative of his) in 167 b.c., the words of Jesus seem to indicate that Antiochus was not the final fulfillment, but that there was (from Jesus’ perspective) still another fulfillment yet to come. Some argue that this was realized in a.d. 70, while others claim that it refers specifically to Antichrist and will not be fully realized until the period of the great tribulation at the end of the age (cf. Mark 13:19, 24; Matt 24:21; Rev 3:10).
  24. Mark 13:14 tn Or perhaps “he.” Those who see the participle ἑστηκότα as masculine singular generally understand it to refer to the individual known as the Antichrist, often citing 2 Thess 2:3-4 as a related passage. By grammatical form the participle ἑστηκότα can also be neuter plural, however, and this is sometimes interpreted as referring to various abominations or atrocities committed during the intertestamental period, or to a statue set up in the temple, or to an altar constructed on top of the altar of burnt offering for the purpose of pagan sacrifices. Each of these views is not without difficulties. Confining the issue merely to the grammatical problem, the interpreter is forced to choose between a discrepancy in grammatical gender (the participle ἑστηκότα is masculine singular but the word it modifies, βδέλυγμα, is neuter singular) or a discrepancy in number (the participle ἑστηκότα is neuter plural but the word it modifies, βδέλυγμα, is neuter singular. Given that the issue is one of grammatical gender, however, it is still possible for the neuter head noun (βδέλυγμα) to refer to a masculine individual rather than a set of circumstances or a thing. The present translation uses “it” for the following pronoun, allowing a degree of ambiguity to remain for the English reader.
  25. Mark 13:14 sn This parenthetical comment is generally regarded as a command by the author made directly to the readers, not as part of Jesus’ original speech. For this reason the statement is not placed within quotation marks.
  26. Mark 13:14 sn Fleeing to the mountains is a key OT image: Gen 19:17; Judg 6:2; Isa 15:5; Jer 16:16; Zech 14:5.
  27. Mark 13:15 sn Most of the roofs in the NT were flat roofs made of pounded dirt, sometimes mixed with lime or stones, supported by heavy wooden beams. They generally had an easy means of access, either a sturdy wooden ladder or stone stairway, sometimes on the outside of the house.
  28. Mark 13:15 sn The nature of the judgment coming upon them will be so quick and devastating that one will not have time to come down or go inside to take anything out of his house. It is best just to escape as quickly as possible.
  29. Mark 13:19 tn Traditionally, “tribulation.”
  30. Mark 13:19 sn Suffering unlike anything that has happened. Some refer this event to the destruction of Jerusalem in a.d. 70. While the events of a.d. 70 may reflect somewhat the comments Jesus makes here, the reference to the scope and severity of this judgment strongly suggest that much more is in view. Most likely Jesus is referring to the great end-time judgment on Jerusalem in the great tribulation.
  31. Mark 13:20 tn Grk “the days.”
  32. Mark 13:21 tn Here καί (kai) has been translated as “then” to indicate the implied sequence of events within the narrative.
  33. Mark 13:21 tn Or “the Messiah”; both “Christ” (Greek) and “Messiah” (Hebrew and Aramaic) mean “one who has been anointed.”sn See the note on Christ in 8:29.
  34. Mark 13:22 tn Or “false christs”; both “Christ” (Greek) and “Messiah” (Hebrew and Aramaic) mean “one who has been anointed.”
  35. Mark 13:24 tn Traditionally, “tribulation.”
  36. Mark 13:25 sn An allusion to Isa 13:10; 34:4 (LXX); Joel 2:10. The heavens were seen as the abode of heavenly forces, so their shaking indicates distress in the spiritual realm. Although some take the powers as a reference to bodies in the heavens (like stars and planets, “the heavenly bodies,” NIV) this is not as likely.
  37. Mark 13:26 tn Grk “they.”
  38. Mark 13:26 sn An allusion to Dan 7:13. Here is Jesus returning with full judging authority.
  39. Mark 13:27 tn Or “of the sky”; the Greek word οὐρανός (ouranos) may be translated “sky” or “heaven,” depending on the context.
  40. Mark 13:29 tn The verb γινώσκετε (ginōskete, “know”) can be parsed as either present indicative or present imperative. In this context the imperative fits better, since the movement is from analogy (trees and seasons) to the future (the signs of the coming of the kingdom) and since the emphasis is on preparation for this event.
  41. Mark 13:30 tn Grk “Truly (ἀμήν, amēn), I say to you.”
  42. Mark 13:30 sn This is one of the hardest verses in the gospels to interpret. Various views exist for what generation means. (1) Some take it as meaning “race” and thus as an assurance that the Jewish race (nation) will not pass away. But it is very questionable that the Greek term γενεά (genea) can have this meaning. Two other options are possible. (2) Generation might mean “this type of generation” and refer to the generation of wicked humanity. Then the point is that humanity will not perish, because God will redeem it. Or (3) generation may refer to “the generation that sees the signs of the end” (v. 26), who will also see the end itself. In other words, once the movement to the return of Christ starts, all the events connected with it happen very quickly, in rapid succession.
  43. Mark 13:31 sn The words that Jesus predicts here will never pass away. They are more stable and lasting than creation itself! For this kind of image, see Isa 40:8; 55:10-11.
  44. Mark 13:32 sn The phrase nor the Son has caused a great deal of theological debate because on the surface it appears to conflict with the concept of Jesus’ deity. The straightforward meaning of the text is that the Son does not know the time of his return. If Jesus were divine, though, wouldn’t he know this information? There are other passages which similarly indicate that Jesus did not know certain things. For example, Luke 2:52 indicates that Jesus grew in wisdom; this has to mean that Jesus did not know everything all the time but learned as he grew. So Mark 13:32 is not alone in implying that Jesus did not know certain things. The best option for understanding Mark 13:32 and similar passages is to hold the two concepts in tension: The Son in his earthly life and ministry had limited knowledge of certain things, yet he was still deity.
  45. Mark 13:33 tc The vast majority of witnesses (א A C L W Θ Ψ ƒ1,13 M lat sy co) have καὶ προσεύχεσθε after ἀγρυπνεῖτε (agrupneite kai proseuchesthe, “stay alert and pray”). This may be a motivated reading, influenced by the similar command in Mark 14:38 where προσεύχεσθε is solidly attested, and more generally from the parallel in Luke 21:36 (though δέομαι [deomai, “ask”] is used there). As B. M. Metzger notes, it is a predictable variant that scribes would have been likely to produce independently of each other (TCGNT 95). The words are not found in B D a c d k. Although the external evidence for the shorter reading is slender, it probably better accounts for the longer reading than vice versa.
  46. Mark 13:34 tn See the note on the word “slave” in 10:44.
  47. Mark 13:34 tn Grk “giving.”
New English Translation (NET)

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