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Mark 4:21 [study!]

American Standard Version (ASV 1901) [2]
— And he said unto them, Is the lamp brought to be put under the bushel, or under the bed, [and] not to be put on the stand?
King James Version (KJV 1769)
— And he said unto them, Is a candle brought to be put under a bushel, or under a bed? and not to be set on a candlestick?
New American Standard Bible (NASB ©1995)
— And He was saying to them, “A lamp is not brought to be put under a basket, is it, or under a bed? Is it not [brought] to be put on the lampstand?
Webster's Revision of the KJB (WEB 1833)
— And he said to them, Is a candle brought to be put under a close vessel, or under a bed? and not to be set on a candlestick?
Darby's Translation (DBY 1890)
— And he said to them, Does the lamp come that it should be put under the bushel or under the couch? [Is it] not that it should be set upon the lamp-stand?
Rotherham's Emphasized Bible (EBR 1902)
— And he was saying unto them—Doth the lamp come that under the measure it should be put, or under the couch? Is it not that upon the lampstand it may be put?
Young's Literal Translation (YLT 1898)
— And he said to them, 'Doth the lamp come that under the measure it may be put, or under the couch—not that it may be put on the lamp-stand?
Douay-Rheims Challoner Revision (DR 1750)
— And he said to them: Doth a candle come in to be put under a bushel, or under a bed? and not to be set on a candlestick?
Original King James Bible (AV 1611) [2]
— And he said vnto them, Is a candle brought to be put vnder a bushell, or vnder a bed? & not to be set on a candlesticke?
John Etheridge Peshitta-Aramaic NT (1849)
— And he said to them, A lamp never cometh to be put under a measure, or under a bed: is it not set upon a candlestick?
James Murdock Peshitta-Aramaic NT (1852)
— And he said to them: Is a lamp brought to be placed under a bushel, or under a bed? Is it not to be placed on a light-stand?

Strong's Numbers & Red-LettersGreek New TestamentColor-Code/Key Word Studies
And 2532
{2532} Prime
καί
kai
{kahee}
Apparently a primary particle, having a copulative and sometimes also a cumulative force; and, also, even, so, then, too, etc.; often used in connection (or composition) with other particles or small words.
he said 3004
{3004} Prime
λέγω
lego
{leg'-o}
A primary verb; properly to 'lay' forth, that is, (figuratively) relate (in words [usually of systematic or set discourse; whereas G2036 and G5346 generally refer to an individual expression or speech respectively; while G4483 is properly to break silence merely, and G2980 means an extended or random harangue]); by implication to mean.
z5707
<5707> Grammar
Tense - Imperfect (See G5775)
Voice - Active (See G5784)
Mood - Indicative (See G5791)
Count - 855
unto them, 846
{0846} Prime
αὐτός
autos
{ow-tos'}
From the particle αὖ [[au]] (perhaps akin to the base of G0109 through the idea of a baffling wind; backward); the reflexive pronoun self, used (alone or in the compound of G1438) of the third person, and (with the proper personal pronoun) of the other persons.
Is y3385
[3385] Standard
μήτι
meti
{may'-tee}
From G3361 and the neuter of G5100; whether at all.
a x3385
(3385) Complement
μήτι
meti
{may'-tee}
From G3361 and the neuter of G5100; whether at all.
candle 3088
{3088} Prime
λύχνος
luchnos
{lookh'-nos}
From the base of G3022; a portable lamp or other illuminator (literally or figuratively).
brought 2064
{2064} Prime
ἔρχομαι
erchomai
{er'-khom-ahee}
Middle voice of a primary verb (used only in the present and imperfect tenses, the others being supplied by a kindred [middle voice] word, ἐλεύθομαι [[eleuthomai]], {el-yoo'-thom-ahee}; or [active] ἔλθω [[eltho]], {el'-tho}; which do not otherwise occur); to come or go (in a great variety of applications, literally and figuratively).
z5736
<5736> Grammar
Tense - Present (See G5774)
Voice - Middle or Passive Deponent (See G5790)
Mood - Indicative (See G5791)
Count - 618
to 2443
{2443} Prime
ἵνα
hina
{hin'-ah}
Probably from the same as the former part of G1438 (through the demonstrative idea; compare G3588); in order that (denoting the purpose or the result).
be put 5087
{5087} Prime
τίθημι
tithemi
{tith'-ay-mee}
A prolonged form of a primary word θέω [[theo]], {theh'-o} (which is used only as an alternate in certain tenses); to place (in the widest application, literally and figuratively; properly in a passive or horizontal posture, and thus different from G2476, which properly denotes an upright and active position, while G2749 is properly reflexive and utterly prostrate).
z5686
<5686> Grammar
Tense - Aorist (See G5777)
Voice - Passive (See G5786)
Mood - Subjunctive (See G5792)
Count - 219
under 5259
{5259} Prime
ὑπό
hupo
{hoop-o'}
A primary preposition; under, that is, (with the genitive) of place (beneath), or with verbs (the agency or means, through); (with the accusative) of place (whither [underneath] or where [below]) or time (when [at]).
a bushel, 3426
{3426} Prime
μόδιος
modios
{mod'-ee-os}
Of Latin origin; a modius, that is, certain measure for things dry (the quantity or the utensil).
or 2228
{2228} Prime

e
{ay}
A primary particle of distinction between two connected terms; disjunctive, or; comparative, than.
under 5259
{5259} Prime
ὑπό
hupo
{hoop-o'}
A primary preposition; under, that is, (with the genitive) of place (beneath), or with verbs (the agency or means, through); (with the accusative) of place (whither [underneath] or where [below]) or time (when [at]).
a bed? 2825
{2825} Prime
κλίνη
kline
{klee'-nay}
From G2827; a couch (for sleep, sickness, sitting or eating).
and not 3756
{3756} Prime
οὐ
ou
{oo}
A primary word; the absolutely negative (compare G3361) adverb; no or not.
to 2443
{2443} Prime
ἵνα
hina
{hin'-ah}
Probably from the same as the former part of G1438 (through the demonstrative idea; compare G3588); in order that (denoting the purpose or the result).
be set 2007
{2007} Prime
ἐπιτίθημι
epitithemi
{ep-ee-tith'-ay-mee}
From G1909 and G5087; to impose (in a friendly or hostile sense).
z5686
<5686> Grammar
Tense - Aorist (See G5777)
Voice - Passive (See G5786)
Mood - Subjunctive (See G5792)
Count - 219
on 1909
{1909} Prime
ἐπί
epi
{ep-ee'}
A primary preposition properly meaning superimposition (of time, place, order, etc.), as a relation of distribution [with the genitive case], that is, over, upon, etc.; of rest (with the dative case) at, on, etc.; of direction (with the accusative case) towards, upon, etc.
a candlestick? 3087
{3087} Prime
λυχνία
luchnia
{lookh-nee'-ah}
From G3088; a lamp stand (literally or figuratively).
Jamieson-Fausset-Brown Commentary

Mark 4:21

_ _ And he said unto them, Is a candle — or “lamp”

_ _ brought to be put under a bushel, or under a bed? and not to be set on a candlestick? — “that they which enter in may see the light” (Luke 8:16). See on Matthew 5:15, of which this is nearly a repetition.

Matthew Henry's Commentary

Mark 4:21-34

_ _ The lessons which our Saviour designs to teach us here by parables and figurative expressions are these: —

_ _ I. That those who are good ought to consider the obligations they are under to do good; that is, as in the parable before, to bring forth fruit. God expects a grateful return of his gifts to us, and a useful improvement of his gifts in us; for (Mark 4:21), Is a candle brought to be put under a bushel, or under a bed? No, but that it may be set on a candlestick. The apostles were ordained, to receive the gospel, not for themselves only, but for the good of others, to communicate it to them. All Christians, as they have received the gift, must minister the same. Note, 1. Gifts and graces make a man as a candle; the candle of the Lord (Proverbs 20:27), lighted by the Father of lights; the most eminent are but candles, poor lights, compared with the Sun of righteousness. A candle gives light but a little way, and but a little while, and is easily blown out, and continually burning down and wasting. 2. Many who are lighted as candles, put themselves under a bed, or under a bushel: they do not manifest grace themselves, nor minister grace to others; they have estates, and do no good with them; have their limbs and senses, wit and learning perhaps, but nobody is the better for them; they have spiritual gifts, but do not use them; like a taper in an urn, they burn to themselves. 3. Those who are lighted as candles, should set themselves on a candlestick; that is, should improve all opportunities of doing good, as those that were made for the glory of God, and the service of the communities they are members of; we are not born for ourselves.

_ _ The reason given for this, is, because there is nothing hid, which shall not be manifested, which should not be made manifest (so it might better be read), Mark 4:22. There is no treasure of gifts and graces lodged in any but with design to be communicated; nor was the gospel made a secret to the apostles, to be concealed, but that it should come abroad, and be divulged to all the world. Though Christ expounded the parables to his disciples privately, yet it was with design to make them the more publicly useful; they were taught, that they might teach; and it is a general rule, that the ministration of the Spirit is given to every man to profit withal, not himself only, but others also.

_ _ II. It concerns those who hear the word of the gospel, to mark what they hear, and to make a good use of it, because their weal or woe depends upon it; what he had said before he saith again, If any man have ears to hear, let him hear, Mark 4:23. Let him give the gospel of Christ a fair hearing; but that is not enough, it is added (Mark 4:24), Take heed what ye hear, and give a due regard to that which ye do hear; Consider what ye hear, so Dr. Hammond reads it. Note, What we hear, doth us no good, unless we consider it; those especially that are to teach others must themselves be very observant of the things of God; must take notice of the message they are to deliver, that they may be exact. We must likewise take heed what we hear, by proving all things, that we may hold fast that which is good. We must be cautious, and stand upon our guard, lest we be imposed upon. To enforce this caution, consider,

_ _ 1. As we deal with God, God will deal with us, so Dr. Hammond explains these words, “With what measure ye mete, it shall be measured to you. If ye be faithful servants to him, he will be a faithful Master to you: with the upright he will show himself upright.

_ _ 2. As we improve the talents we are entrusted with, we shall increase them; if we make use of the knowledge we have, for the glory of God and the benefit of others, it shall sensibly grow, as stock in trade doth by being turned; Unto you that hear, shall more be given; to you that have, it shall be given, Mark 4:25. If the disciples deliver that to the church, which they have received of the Lord, they shall be led more into the secret of the Lord. Gifts and graces multiply by being exercised; and God has promised to bless the hand of the diligent.

_ _ 3. If we do not use, we lose, what we have; From him that hath not, that doeth no good with what he hath, and so hath it in vain, is as if he had it not, shall be taken even that which he hath. Burying a talent is the betraying of a trust, and amounts to a forfeiture; and gifts and graces rust for want of wearing.

_ _ III. The good seed of the gospel sown in the world, and sown in the heart, doth by degrees produce wonderful effects, but without noise (Mark 4:26, etc.); So is the kingdom of God; so is the gospel, when it is sown, and received, as seed in good ground.

_ _ 1. It will come up; though it seem lost and buried under the clods, it will find or make its way through them. The seed cast into the ground will spring. Let but the word of Christ have the place it ought to have in a soul, and it will show itself, as the wisdom from above doth in a good conversation. After a field is sown with corn, how soon is the surface of it altered! How gay and pleasant doth it look, when it is covered with green!

_ _ 2. The husbandman cannot describe how it comes up; it is one of the mysteries of nature; It springs and grows up, he knows not how, Mark 4:27. He sees it has grown, but he cannot tell in what manner it grew, or what was the cause and method of its growth. Thus we know not how the Spirit by the word makes a change in the heart, any more than we can account for the blowing of the wind, which we hear the sound of, but cannot tell whence it comes, or whither it goes. Without controversy, great is the mystery of godliness; how God manifested in the flesh came to be believed on in the world, 1 Timothy 3:16.

_ _ 3. The husbandman, when he hath sown the seed, doth nothing toward the springing of it up; He sleeps, and rises, night and day; goes to sleep at night, gets up in the morning, and perhaps never so much as thinks of the corn he hath sown, or ever looks upon it, but follows his pleasures or other business, and yet the earth brings forth fruit of itself, according to the ordinary course of nature, and by the concurring power of the God of nature. Thus the word of grace, when it is received in faith, is in the heart a work of grace, and the preachers contribute nothing to it. The Spirit of God is carrying it on when they sleep, and can do no business (Job 33:15, Job 33:16), or when they rise to go about other business. The prophets do not live for ever; but the word which they preached, is doing its work, when they are in their graves, Zechariah 1:5, Zechariah 1:6. The dew by which the seed is brought up tarrieth not for man, nor waiteth for the sons of men, Micah 5:7.

_ _ 4. It grows gradually; first the blade, then the ear, after that the full corn in the ear, Mark 4:28. When it is sprung up, it will go forward; nature will have its course, and so will grace. Christ's interest, both in the world and in the heart, is, and will be, a growing interest; and though the beginning be small, the latter end will greatly increase. Though thou sowest not that body that shall be, but bare grain, yet God will give to every seed its own body; though at first it is but a tender blade, which the frost may nip, or the foot may crush, yet it will increase to the ear, to the full corn in the ear. Natura nil facit per saltum — Nature does nothing abruptly. God carries on his work insensibly and without noise, but insuperably and without fail.

_ _ 5. It comes to perfection at last (Mark 4:29); When the fruit is brought forth, that is, when it is ripe, and ready to be delivered into the owner's hand; then he puts in the sickle. This intimates, (1.) That Christ now accepts the services which are done to him by an honest heart from a good principle; from the fruit of the gospel taking place and working in the soul, Christ gathers in a harvest of honour to himself. See John 4:35. (2.) That he will reward them in eternal life. When those that receive the gospel aright, have finished their course, the harvest comes, when they shall be gathered as wheat into God's barn (Matthew 13:30), as a shock of corn in his season.

_ _ IV. The work of grace is small in its beginnings, but comes to be great and considerable at last (Mark 4:30-32); “Whereunto shall I liken the kingdom of God, as now to be set up by the Messiah? How shall I make you to understand the designed method of it?” Christ speaks as one considering and consulting with himself, how to illustrate it with an apt similitude; With what comparison shall we compare it? Shall we fetch it from the motions of the sun, or the revolutions of the moon? No, the comparison is borrowed from this earth, it is like a grain of mustard-seed; he had compared it before to seed sown, here to that seed, intending thereby to show,

_ _ 1. That the beginnings of the gospel kingdom would be very small, like that which is one of the least of all seeds. When a Christian church was sown in the earth for God, it was all contained in one room, and the number of the names was but one hundred and twenty (Acts 1:15), as the children of Israel, when they went down into Egypt, were but seventy souls. The work of grace in the soul, is, at first, but the day of small things; a cloud no bigger than a man's hand. Never were there such great things undertaken by such an inconsiderable handful, as that of the discipling of the nations by the ministry of the apostles; nor a work that was to end in such great glory, as the work of grace raised from such weak and unlikely beginnings. Who hath begotten me these?

_ _ 2. That the perfection of it will be very great; When it grows up, it becomes greater than all herbs. The gospel kingdom in the world, shall increase and spread to the remotest nations of the earth, and shall continue to the latest ages of time. The church hath shot out great branches, strong ones, spreading far, and fruitful. The work of grace in the soul has mighty products, now while it is in its growth; but what will it be, when it is perfected in heaven? The difference between a grain of mustard seed and a great tree, is nothing to that between a young convert on earth and a glorified saint in heaven. See John 12:24.

_ _ After the parables thus specified the historian concludes with this general account of Christ's preaching — that with many such parables he spoke the word unto them (Mark 4:33); probably designing to refer us to the larger account of the parables of this kind, which we had before, Mt. 13. He spoke in parables, as they were able to hear them; he fetched his comparisons from those things that were familiar to them, and level to their capacity, and delivered them in plain expressions, in condescension to their capacity; though he did not let them into the mystery of the parables, yet his manner of expression was easy, and such as they might hereafter recollect to their edification. But, for the present, without a parable spoke he not unto them, Mark 4:34. The glory of the Lord was covered with a cloud, and God speaks to us in the language of the sons of men, that, though not at first, yet by degrees, we may understand his meaning; the disciples themselves understood those sayings of Christ afterward, which at first they did not rightly take the sense of. But these parables he expounded to them, when they were alone. We cannot but wish we had had that exposition, as we had of the parable of the sower; but it was not so needful; because, when the church should be enlarged, that would expound these parables to us, without any more ado.

John Wesley's Explanatory Notes

Mark 4:21

And he said, Is a candle — As if he had said, I explain these things to you, I give you this light, not to conceal, but to impart it to others. And if I conceal any thing from you now, it is only that it may be more effectually manifested hereafter. Matthew 5:15; Luke 8:16; Luke 11:33.

Geneva Bible Translation Notes

Mark 4:21

(2) And he said unto them, Is a candle brought to be put under a bushel, or under a bed? and not to be set on a candlestick?

(2) Although the light of the gospel is rejected by the world, yet it ought to be lit, if for no other reason than this, that the wickedness of the world might be revealed.

Cross-Reference Topical ResearchStrong's Concordance
Is a:

Isaiah 60:1-3 Arise, shine; for thy light is come, and the glory of the LORD is risen upon thee. ... And the Gentiles shall come to thy light, and kings to the brightness of thy rising.
Matthew 5:15 Neither do men light a candle, and put it under a bushel, but on a candlestick; and it giveth light unto all that are in the house.
Luke 8:16 No man, when he hath lighted a candle, covereth it with a vessel, or putteth [it] under a bed; but setteth [it] on a candlestick, that they which enter in may see the light.
Luke 11:33 No man, when he hath lighted a candle, putteth [it] in a secret place, neither under a bushel, but on a candlestick, that they which come in may see the light.
1 Corinthians 12:7 But the manifestation of the Spirit is given to every man to profit withal.
Ephesians 5:3-15 But fornication, and all uncleanness, or covetousness, let it not be once named among you, as becometh saints; ... See then that ye walk circumspectly, not as fools, but as wise,
Philippians 2:15-16 That ye may be blameless and harmless, the sons of God, without rebuke, in the midst of a crooked and perverse nation, among whom ye shine as lights in the world; ... Holding forth the word of life; that I may rejoice in the day of Christ, that I have not run in vain, neither laboured in vain.

bushel:
"The word in the original signifieth a less measure, as
Matthew 5:15 Neither do men light a candle, and put it under a bushel, but on a candlestick; and it giveth light unto all that are in the house.
, marg."
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Is 60:1. Mt 5:15. Lk 8:16; 11:33. 1Co 12:7. Ep 5:3. Php 2:15.

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