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New World Translation of the Holy Scriptures (Study Edition)

C3

Verses Where the Divine Name Does Not Appear as Part of Direct or Indirect Quotations in the Book of Mark

MARK 5:19 “things Jehovah has done”

REASON(S): Although most Greek manuscripts read “the Lord” (ho Kyʹri·os) here, there are good reasons for using the divine name in the main text. In the Christian Greek Scriptures, Kyʹri·os can refer to Jehovah God or to Jesus Christ, depending on the context. Here the context shows that Kyʹri·os is used with reference to God. Speaking to the man who had been healed, Jesus is attributing the miracle, not to himself, but to his heavenly Father. In recording the same event, Luke (8:39) uses the Greek word The·osʹ (God), supporting the thought that Kyʹri·os (Lord) at Mark 5:19 is used with reference to God. Additionally, the phrases “the things . . . done for you” and “mercy . . . shown you” have a bearing on the matter, as corresponding Hebrew verbs are often used in the Hebrew Scriptures, along with the divine name, with reference to Jehovah’s dealings with humans.​—Genesis 21:1; Exodus 13:8; Deuteronomy 4:34; 13:17; 30:3; 1 Samuel 12:7; 25:30; 2 Kings 13:23.

SUPPORT:

  • A Greek-English Lexicon of the New Testament and Other Early Christian Literature, revised and edited by F. W. Danker, 2000, (pp. 576-577) lists Mark 5:19 under the definition of “lord” as “a designation of God.” It goes on to say concerning the use of the expression in the Septuagint [LXX]: “It freq. [frequently] replaces the name Yahweh in the MT [Masoretic Text].”

  • The reference work Exegetical Dictionary of the New Testament, 1991, (Vol. 2, pp. 329-330) lists Mark 5:19 as a verse where Kyʹri·os is possibly “used of Yahweh.”

  • The Gospel According to St Mark (The Greek Text With Introduction Notes and Indices), by Henry Barclay Swete, 1902, gives יהוה (YHWH, or the Tetragrammaton) as one possible rendering.

  • The Interpretation of St. Mark’s Gospel, by R.C.H. Lenski, on page 216 says of this verse: “Ὁ Κύριος [Ho Kyʹri·os] is Yahweh, the Old Testament name for the covenant God. . . . The man himself and all who hear his message are to know that Jehovah has come into their land and has done this great deed through his servant Jesus.”

  • In the book The Principles and Practice of New Testament Textual Criticism, G. D. Kilpatrick lists Mark 5:19 as an occurrence where “Κύριος [Kyʹri·os] = Yahweh.”

  • The Complete Jewish Bible, by David H. Stern, 1998, uses capital and small capitals for the word “ADONAI” in this verse. In the introduction to this Bible, the translator explains: “The word ‘ADONAIis used . . . wherever I, as the translator, believe ‘kurios’ is the Greek representation of the tetragrammaton.”

  • The Gospel According to St. Mark: The Greek Text With Introduction, Notes, and Indexes, by Vincent Taylor, 1952, on page 285 says that this occurrence of Kyʹri·os (Lord) “is used of God.”

  • In his book The Gospel According to Mark, 1858, Joseph Addison Alexander expresses his opinion that the “ambiguous expression,” “the Lord,” in this verse describes Christ. However, he goes on to acknowledge that “the hearers may have understood [this expression] more vaguely, as denoting God, perhaps with special reference to his covenant relations with his people, as expressed by the Hebrew name Jehovah, for which the constant equivalent or rather substitute both in the Septuagint and the New Testament is (ο κύριος) the Lord.”

SUPPORTING REFERENCES: J7-10, 13, 17, 18, 22, 28-32, 34, 36, 41, 44, 52, 63, 93-96, 100, 104-106, 114-117, 125, 132

MARK 13:20 “unless Jehovah had cut short the days”

REASON(S): Although most Greek manuscripts use the word Kyʹri·os (Lord) here, there are good reasons for using the divine name in the main text. In the Christian Greek Scriptures, Kyʹri·os can refer to Jehovah God or to Jesus Christ, depending on the context. Here the context shows that Kyʹri·os is used with reference to God, since Jesus was explaining to his disciples what his Father will do during the great tribulation. The wording of Jesus’ prophecy here is similar to that of prophetic statements in the Hebrew Scriptures where the divine name is used. (Isaiah 1:9; 65:8; Jeremiah 46:28 [26:28, Septuagint]; Amos 9:8) In these four prophetic verses where the Hebrew text contains the Tetragrammaton, existing copies of the Septuagint use Kyʹri·os without the definite article, where it would be expected according to standard grammatical usage. Similarly, scholars have noted the unexpected lack of the definite article before Kyʹri·os at Mark 13:20. This is another indication that Kyʹri·os is here used as a substitute for the divine name.

SUPPORT:

  • A Greek-English Lexicon of the New Testament and Other Early Christian Literature, revised and edited by F. W. Danker, 2000, (pp. 576-577) lists Mark 13:20 under the definition of “lord” as “a designation of God.” It goes on to say: “Without the art[icle] . . . , like a personal name.”

  • The reference work Exegetical Dictionary of the New Testament, 1991, (Vol. 2, pp. 329-330) lists Mark 13:20 as a verse where Kyʹri·os is “used of Yahweh.”

  • In the book The Principles and Practice of New Testament Textual Criticism, G. D. Kilpatrick lists Mark 13:20 as an occurrence where “Κύριος [Kyʹri·os] = Yahweh.”

  • The ‘Holy Scriptures,’ by J. N. Darby, 1949, says in a footnote on “Lord” in this verse: “Without the article, ‘Jehovah.’”

  • The Gospel According to St Mark (The Greek Text With Introduction Notes and Indices), by Henry Barclay Swete, 1902, gives יהוה (YHWH, or the Tetragrammaton) as one possible rendering.

  • The Gospel According to St. Mark: The Greek Text With Introduction, Notes, and Indexes, by Vincent Taylor, 1952, on page 514 says of this occurrence of Kyʹri·os (Lord) in the Greek text: “Here the idea found in many apocalyptic writings, that in His mercy and for the sake of the elect God has shortened the period of tribulation for mankind . . . is strongly expressed.” Taylor goes on to say on page 515: “The use of the anarthrous Κύριος is characteristic of [Old Testament] quotations.”

  • In his expositional commentary The Gospel of Mark, 1994, (p. 378) D. Edmond Hiebert makes this comment on Mark 13:20: “The Lord, Jehovah God of the Old Covenant, is in sovereign control of the affairs of this world, and He has graciously decreed a limitation on those days.”

  • The Gospel According to Mark, by scholar Joseph Addison Alexander, 1858, says of Mark 13:20: “The Lord, the Sovereign God, Jehovah.”

  • The Companion Bible, with notes by E. W. Bullinger, 1999 printing, uses capital and small capitals for LORD in the main text of Mark 13:20 and adds this explanation in Appendix 98: “Used of Jehovah . . . and printed ‘LORD’ throughout.”

  • The Holy Bible, Containing the Authorized Version of the Old and New Testaments, by J. T. Conquest, 1841, capitalizes LORD in the main text of Mark 13:20.

  • The following English translations use “God” instead of “Lord” at Mark 13:20: The Complete Jewish Bible, A Translator’s Translation of the New Testament, The Expanded Bible, and The Word New Century Version, New Testament.

  • A Translator’s Handbook on the Gospel of Mark, produced by the United Bible Societies, says regarding this verse: “‘The Lord’: here, of course, God.”

SUPPORTING REFERENCES: J7, 8, 10, 16-18, 22-24, 28-36, 39-43, 46-48, 52, 61, 63, 65, 88, 90, 92-97, 100-102, 104, 106, 114-116, 125, 132