Stephen Carlson wrote:I guess I should check my commentaries.
Well, Robert Gundry, who likes expounding this kind of detail, completely ignores the ἤρξατο in 6:7 and talks about the significance of ἀποστέλλειν and δύο δύο instead. That's a little disappointing.
Joel Marcus, on the other hand, distinguishes 6:7 from the 25 other instances of Mark's beloved construction with ἄρχομαι + inf., on the grounds that
Markus 1999:383 wrote:there is a sense in which it describes the 'beginning' of an activity that will continue after the resurrection ... In favor of this interpretation is the verbal link between 6:7 and 3:14-15, where the Twelve were chosen to preach and cast out demons but did not yet take up these offices. Now, however, the moment has arrived for them to begin doing so (cf. Reploh, Lehrer, 54).
So Marcus actually has a reading where it is plausible for the emphasis in 6:7 to be on ἤρξατο.
Stephen C. Carlson, Ph.D.