Hey everyone! I’m excited to be back 😀 Bethany helped us move this past week from the Old Testament into the New Testament with the gospel of Mark (thanks Bethany!). This week, we’ll be exploring the second half of the gospel of Mark and see some of the themes that Mark has been setting up come to their close.
Before we get into looking at the text itself, here’s just a bit about Mark that will be helpful for us as we read.
First, Mark is the oldest of the gospels and it sets the stage for the synoptic gospels (Matthew, Mark, & Luke). As the church grew in the years after Jesus’ resurrection, there wasn’t any need to write down stories about his life – the people who were there and saw it were still alive and present. It was only around the end of the first century CE that people who were followers of Jesus began to write down what they knew about his life and teachings. Why? Because all the witnesses were dying! They needed to keep a more permanent record of Jesus’s words that didn’t rely on having witnesses of the events nearby. That first written story came to be known as the Gospel of Mark. The writers of the Gospel of Luke and Matthew would later use Mark as the skeleton for their gospels.
It’s because of this that the gospel of Mark is my favorite of the gospels. It’s the pre-cursor and contains the most concise collected narrative of Jesus’ life and teachings. And – the end is just great (but we’ll get there soon enough)!
So, I hope that you’ll join me as we explore what one of the earliest authors of the life of Jesus had to say about “the good news of Jesus Christ, the Son of God.” (Mark 1:1)