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Mark 1 The Passion Translation (TPT)

The Wonderful News

This is the beginning of the wonderful news about Jesus[a] the Messiah, the Son of God.[b]

It starts with Isaiah the prophet, who wrote:

Listen! I am sending my messenger ahead of you[c]
    and he will prepare your way!
He is a thunderous voice of one
    who shouts in the wilderness:
    “Prepare your hearts
    for the coming of the Lord Yahweh,[d]
    and clear a straight path[e]
    inside your hearts for him!”[f]

John the Baptizer[g] was the messenger who appeared in an uninhabited region, preaching a baptism of repentance[h] for the complete cancellation of sins. A steady stream of people came to be dipped in the Jordan River as they publicly confessed their sins. They came from all over southern Israel,[i] including nearly all the inhabitants of Jerusalem. John wore a rough garment made from camel hair,[j] with a leather belt around his waist,[k] and he ate locusts and honey of the wilderness. And this is the message he kept preaching: “There is a man coming after me who is greater and a lot more powerful than I am. I’m not even worthy to bend down and untie the strap of his sandals. I’ve baptized you into water, but he will baptize you into the Spirit of Holiness!”

The Baptism and Testing of Jesus

One day, Jesus came from the Galilean village of Nazareth[l] and had John immerse him in the Jordan River. 10 The moment Jesus rose up out of the water, John saw the heavenly realm split open, and the Holy Spirit descended like a dove and rested upon him.[m] 11 At the same time, a voice spoke from heaven, saying:

“You are my Son, my cherished one,
    and my greatest delight is in you!”[n]

12 Immediately after this he was compelled by the Holy Spirit[o] to go into an uninhabited desert region. 13 He remained there in the wilderness for forty days,[p] enduring the ordeals of Satan’s tests. He encountered wild animals, but also angels who appeared and ministered to his needs.[q]

Jesus Calls Four Fishermen to Follow Him

14 Later on, after John the Baptizer was arrested, Jesus went back into the region of Galilee and preached the wonderful gospel of God’s kingdom realm.[r] 15 His message was this: “At last the fulfillment of the age has come! It is time for the realm of God’s kingdom to be experienced in its fullness! Turn your lives back to God and put your trust in the hope-filled gospel!”[s]

16 As Jesus was walking along the shore of Lake Galilee, he noticed two brothers fishing: Simon and Andrew. He watched them as they were casting their nets into the sea 17 and said to them, “Come follow me and I will transform you into men who catch people instead of fish!”[t] 18 Immediately they dropped their nets and left everything behind to follow Jesus. 19 Walking a little farther, Jesus found two other brothers sitting in a boat, along with their father, mending their nets. Their names were Jacob[u] and John, and their father Zebedee.[v] 20 Jesus immediately walked up to them and invited the two brothers to become his followers. At once, Jacob[w] and John dropped their nets, stood up, left their father in the boat with the hired men, and followed Jesus.[x]

People Stunned by Jesus’ Teachings

21 Then Jesus and his disciples went to Capernaum,[y] and he immediately started teaching on the Sabbath day in the synagogue. 22 The people were awestruck and overwhelmed[z] by his teaching, because he taught in a way that demonstrated God’s authority, which was quite unlike the religious scholars.[aa]

23 Suddenly, during the meeting, a demon-possessed man screamed out, 24 “Hey! Leave us alone! Jesus the victorious,[ab] I know who you are. You’re God’s Holy One and you have come to destroy us!”[ac]

25 Jesus rebuked him, saying, “Silence! You are bound![ad] Come out of him!”

26 The man’s body shook violently in spasms, and the demon hurled him to the floor until it finally came out of him with a deafening shriek! 27 The crowd was awestruck and unable to stop saying among themselves, “What is this new teaching that comes with such authority? With merely a word he commands demons to come out and they obey him!”

28 So the reports about Jesus spread like wildfire throughout every community in the region of Galilee.

Jesus Heals Many

29 Now, as soon as they left the meeting, they went straight to Simon and Andrew’s house, along with Jacob[ae] and John. 30 Simon’s mother-in-law was bedridden, sick with a high fever, so the first thing they did was to tell Jesus about her. 31 He walked up to her bedside, gently took her hand, and raised her up! Her fever disappeared and she began to serve them.

32 Later in the day, just after the Sabbath ended[af] at sunset, the people kept bringing to Jesus all who were sick and tormented by demons, 33 until the whole village was crowded around the house. 34 Jesus cured many who were sick[ag] with various diseases and cast out many demons. But he would not permit the demons to speak, because they knew who he really was.[ah]

Jesus Prays, Preaches, Heals, and Casts Out Demons

35 The next morning, Jesus got up long before daylight, left the house while it was dark, and made his way to a secluded place to give himself to prayer. 36 Later, Simon and his friends searched for him, 37 and when they finally tracked him down, they told him, “Everyone is looking for you—they want you!”

38 Jesus replied, “We have to go on to the surrounding villages so that I can give my message to the people there, for that is my mission.” 39 So he went throughout the region of Galilee, preaching in the Jewish synagogues and casting out demons.

40 On one occasion, a leper came and threw himself down in front of Jesus, pleading for his healing, saying, “You have the power to heal me right now if only you really want to!” 41 Being deeply moved with tender compassion,[ai] Jesus reached out and touched the skin of the leper and told him, “Of course I want you to be healed—so now, be cleansed!” 42 Instantly his leprous sores completely disappeared and his skin became smooth! 43 Jesus sent him away with a very stern warning,[aj] 44 saying, “Don’t say anything to anyone about what just happened, but go find a priest and show him that you’ve been healed. Then bring the offering that Moses commanded for your cleansing as a living testimony to everyone.”[ak]

45 But no sooner did the man leave than he began to proclaim his healing publicly[al] and spread the story everywhere of his healing.

Jesus’ growing fame prevented him from entering the villages openly, which forced him to remain in isolated places. Even so, a steady stream of people flocked to him from everywhere.


  1. Mark 1:1 The Aramaic is “the revelation of Jesus.”
  2. Mark 1:1 Although the words “Son of God” are missing from some Greek manuscripts, it is found in the Aramaic.
  3. Mark 1:2 This line is a quotation from Ex. 23:20 and Mal. 3:1, where it is an “angel” (or “messenger”) that God sends before them.
  4. Mark 1:3 As translated from the Aramaic.
  5. Mark 1:3 Or “Prepare the way for the Lord and make his beaten paths straight, level, and passable.” This “way” is not a road, but preparing the heart, making room for the ways of the Lord.
  6. Mark 1:3 See Isa. 40:3.
  7. Mark 1:4 John was the son of Zechariah, a priest. As the son of a priest, John was qualified to serve in the temple but chose instead the lonely wilderness to begin his ministry of calling a nation to repentance and preparing the way for the Lord Jesus.
  8. Mark 1:4 That is, “an immersion that will bring a change of heart and lead you into repentance” for the complete cancellation of sins.
  9. Mark 1:5 Or “Judea.”
  10. Mark 1:6 John was not afraid to violate religious taboos. A camel was considered unclean in the Jewish tradition. He was wearing what others considered to be unclean. Those who break loose of religious tradition will often appear to be undignified, as was John. His commission was to inaugurate a new way of living according to the truths of Jesus Christ and the Holy Spirit.
  11. Mark 1:6 This was considered to be the wardrobe of a prophet and was identical to what the prophet Elijah wore (2 Kings 1:8; Zech. 13:4). With a diet of locusts John points back to the four varieties of locusts mentioned in Joel 1:4. Locusts (grasshoppers) are an emblem of intimidation that will keep believers from taking their inheritance by faith. Israel thought themselves to be like grasshoppers in their own eyes because of the intimidation of the fierce inhabitants of the land. John the Baptizer arrives on the scene and makes locusts his food, eating up that symbol of intimidation (devouring the devourer). And he drank honey, which is a biblical metaphor of the revelation of God’s Word that is sweeter than honey (Ps. 19:7-10). John’s ministry was a prophetic statement from God that a new day had come, a day of leaving dead formalism and embracing new life in Jesus without intimidation.
  12. Mark 1:9 It is possible to translate the Aramaic as “Then one day Jesus came from victorious revelation” to be baptized by John. The word Nazareth can mean “victorious one,” and the word Galilee can be translated “the place of revelation.”
  13. Mark 1:10 The Lord Jesus was buried in baptism, symbolically into death (the Jordan) so that he might minister not in the natural way of men, but in the way of resurrection by the power of the Holy Spirit. The dove, an emblem of the Holy Spirit, pictures both meekness and purity. The implication is that the Holy Spirit came upon Jesus and never left him.
  14. Mark 1:11 Although not a direct quotation, the wording is similar to Ps. 2:7.
  15. Mark 1:12 Or “cast out [or “thrown,” or “pushed”] into the wilderness.” The Greek word ekballei is often used for driving out demons. This was a forceful compelling of the Holy Spirit.
  16. Mark 1:13 The “forty days” points to Moses, Elijah, and David, who were all great champions in Israel’s history. See Ex. 34:28; 1 Sam. 17:16; 1 Kings 19:8, 15.
  17. Mark 1:13 Between vv. 13 and 14 there is an entire year of our Lord’s life that Mark skips over. Jesus spent most of that year in and around Jerusalem. The Gospel of John gives further details of that year in ch. 1.
  18. Mark 1:14 As translated from the Aramaic and most Greek manuscripts.
  19. Mark 1:15 The Greek is “believe the good news” (“the gospel”), and the Aramaic is “put your trust in the joyful message of hope.” This translation merges both concepts, making it “the hope-filled gospel.
  20. Mark 1:17 The metaphor of “fishers of men” simply means that they will persuade others and catch people for God.
  21. Mark 1:19 Or “James.” Other translations of the Bible substitute Jacob for James. Both Greek and Aramaic leave the Hebrew name as it is, Jacob. This translation will use the correct name, Jacob, throughout.
  22. Mark 1:19 Zebedee means “my gift.” Zebedee’s gift to Jesus was his sons. A wise father will always want his children to be given to Jesus.
  23. Mark 1:20 Or “James.”
  24. Mark 1:20 What a powerful effect Jesus had upon people! One encounter with the Son of God compelled these businessmen to leave their trade and follow Jesus. We learn from Luke 5:10 that the family of Zebedee was in business together with Simon (Peter) and Andrew. They owned the boat and had a hired crew, which makes one think they were somewhat prosperous business owners, for commercial fishermen in the time of Jesus were usually wealthy.
  25. Mark 1:21 Capernaum means “the village of Nahum.” Nahum means “comforted.” Jesus did many miracles and made his Galilean base of ministry in “the village of the comforted.”
  26. Mark 1:22 The Greek word used here, ekplesso, is a strong verb that means “awestruck, filled with amazement, astonished, panic stricken, something that takes your breath away (being hit with a blow), to be shocked, to expel, to drive out.” Clearly, Jesus spoke with such glory and power emanating from him that his words were like thunderbolts in their hearts. May we hear his words in the same way today.
  27. Mark 1:22 Or “scribes” (experts of the Law). Jesus taught from an inner knowledge of God and his Word, for his teaching emphasized obedience to God from the heart, not just outwardly keeping of laws.
  28. Mark 1:24 As translated from the Aramaic. The Greek is “Jesus the Nazarene” (“Branch” or “Scion”).
  29. Mark 1:24 The demon knew Jesus’ true identity before the people did. This is not so much a question (Have you come to destroy us?), but rather an assertive and defiant declaration. There is no question mark in the Greek text. The demonized man was apparently comfortable in the presence of the religious teachers, but when Jesus stepped into the room, he spoke out and couldn’t resist the power of Jesus.
  30. Mark 1:25 Or “muzzled.”
  31. Mark 1:29 Or “James.”
  32. Mark 1:32 Implied in the context.
  33. Mark 1:34 The Greek word kakos is actually the word for “evil”; however, it is traditionally translated “sickness.”
  34. Mark 1:34 Jesus wants us to proclaim who he is, not demons.
  35. Mark 1:41 This is an intense emotion. Some Greek manuscripts have “Jesus was moved with anger” (at the leprosy, not the man). However, the Aramaic is clearly “moved with compassion.” The two Aramaic words for “anger” and “compassion” are written almost identically. Perhaps both are correct. Jesus was deeply moved with compassion toward the man and angry at the disease.
  36. Mark 1:43 The Greek word embrimaomai can mean “to sternly give a warning”; however, in John 11:33 it is translated “was deeply moved wtih tenderness and compassion.” The miracle of healing this leper had a profound effect on both Jesus and the man who was healed.
  37. Mark 1:44 See Lev. 14:1-32. Normally, touching a leper would make a man unclean, but in this instance, the leper was healed and Jesus was not defiled.
  38. Mark 1:45 Or “preach.”
The Passion Translation (TPT)

The Passion Translation®. Copyright © 2017 by BroadStreet Publishing® Group, LLC.
Used by permission. All rights reserved. thePassionTranslation.com


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