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Verses 28-29

Mark 9:28-29. When he was come into the house, his disciples asked him, &c. See notes on Matthew 17:19-21. This kind can come forth by nothing but by prayer and fasting “Some doubts have been raised in regard to the meaning of the words, this kind. The most obvious interpretation is, doubtless, that which refers them to the word demon, immediately preceding. But as in the parallel passage in Matthew 17:19, mention is made of faith, as the necessary qualification for dispossessing demons, Knatchbull and others have thought that this kind, refers to the faith that is requisite. But it is an insurmountable objection to this hypothesis, that we have here the same sentiment, almost the same expression, and ushered in with the same words, this kind, though, in what goes before, there is no mention of faith, or of any thing but demon, to which it can refer. It would be absurd to suppose, that the pronouns and relatives in one gospel refer to antecedents in another. Every one of the gospels does indeed give additional information, and in various ways serves to throw light upon the rest. But every gospel must be a consistent history by itself; otherwise, to attempt an explanation would be in vain. Now the argument stands thus: The story related in both gospels is manifestly the same: that the words in question may refer to demon in Matthew, no person who attentively reads the passage can deny; that they cannot refer to faith, but must refer to demon, in Mark, is equally evident. Either, then, they refer to demon in both, or the evangelists contradict one another. Some have considered it as an objection to the above explanation, that it supposes different kinds of demons; and that the expulsion of some kinds is more difficult than that of others. This objection is founded entirely on our own ignorance. Who can say that there are not different kinds of demons? or that there may not be degrees in the power of expelling? Revelation has not said that they are all of one kind, and may be expelled with equal ease.” Campbell.

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