This statement from Jesus is what is known as hyperbole-a deliberate exaggeration in order to make a point. We might compare this to the modern statement, “It’s raining cats and dogs.” We don’t mean that actual cats and dogs are falling from the sky. We are saying that the rain is coming down in a torrential downpour.
Both men and women of the Bible times wore outer robes or cloaks that extended almost to the feet (read Gen 37:3; Deut 22:5 and 1 Sam 19:24). These loose-fitting gowns were held tight against the body by a belt or sash (generally referred to as a “girdle” by the King James Version) around the person’s waist.
The words astrologers, stargazers, and monthly prognosticators refers to people who studied the stars and the movement of the moon in order to foretell the future. This practice was especially popular among the ancient Babylonians.
In Paul’s time, slaves were branded with distinctive marks to show that they belonged to their masters, much as cattle are branded in modern times (Psa 40:6). Paul declared that his body bore marks from the persecution he had endured in Christ’s service. These showed the he belonged to the Lord Jesus.