An Introduction to the Gospel of Mark
- What are some events
that have caused the biggest changes in your life?
- What one thing in your
past do you wish you could change?
- If you were able to
change one thing in this world, what would it be?
beginning..." - It could also be translated,
"A beginning..." Compare this phrase to
- "The good
news" - This Greek word, euangellizo, may
also be translated as "gospel." Like our
English word, "evangelize," which comes
from it, It has to do with announcing the good news
of salvation and peace. See Isaiah 52.7.
- "Christ" -
This is a Greek word which is translating the Hebrew
word "Messiah" which means
"anointed." As a passage like 1 Samuel 10.1
indicates, in ancient Israel, a person was anointed
to be made king. Mark 8.29 and 14.61 are two other
key places in Mark where this term is used.
- "Son of
God" - An honorific title denoting a person's
relationship to God, especially in view of God's
saving actions. Note its use in 1.11; 3.11; 5.7; 9.7;
14.61; and 15.39.
- The quotation is
actually a combination of Isaiah 40.3, Exodus 23.20,
and Malachi 3.1.
- Compare John the
Baptist with Elijah as described in 2 Kings 1.8. Now
read Malachi 4.5 and Mark 9.11-13.
- The same word for
"torn apart" will be used again in 15.38.
- Regarding the
heavenly voice, see Psalm 2.7 and Isaiah 42.1.
- Note how often this term is used throughout Mark.
- On Satan, also see
Mark 3.23-26; 4:15; and 8.33.
- "After John was
arrested..." - See Mark 6.17-29.
- In 1.20 it tells of
how James and John left their father. See Mark
- Also see Mark 11.27-33.
- Does it make any
difference if we do or do not know exactly who wrote this
Gospel? Is there any reason why it may have been written
- The two biggest holidays
in the church year are Christmas and Easter, but Mark has
no birth story and no account of Jesus' resurrection
appearances! What is given more attention in Mark? How
does this shape your picture of Jesus?
- As you look at the
outline to the Gospel and note the geographical
references, what conclusions do you draw?
- Look at 1.1 again. List
all the things you have to presume or know in order to
understand what this phrase is saying.
- What new
"beginning" has Jesus made in your life?
- What is the most
significant title you use for Jesus? Why?
- Read 1.4. How do you
explain the relationship between the terms
"baptism," "repentance," and
- Read 1.9-11 again. Who
exactly sees the event? Who hears the voice? What then
does this event prove and to whom?
- Compare 1.10-11 with
15.38-39. What is the significance of paralleling Jesus'
baptism with his crucifixion?
- Read 1.14-15. What is so
good about Jesus' message?
- If you knew that the
world was going to end tomorrow, what would you do today?
- Eat, drink, and be
merry, for tomorrow we die!
- Get all my family and
friends together for a final goodbye.
- Do exactly what I
- Plant a tree.
- Live it up like there
was no tomorrow.
- Start praying to God
like there was no tomorrow.
- Stand on a street corner
with a sign saying, "The end is near!"
- What did Simon and
Andrew and James and John know about Jesus before he
called them? Why do you think they responded so quickly?
- How would you describe
your steps in following Jesus? Something that happened
quickly? Slowly? In spurts?
- When do the disciples
ever fulfill Jesus' promise that they will "fish for
- What do you think made
Jesus' teaching authoritative? What makes it
- Who makes the more
profound confession of faith: the unclean spirit or the
- What are the various
authorities to which you are subject every day? How would
you rank their importance? What do you do when you
experience a conflict of or with authority?
- Be sure to repent of
your sins, ask for forgiveness and renewal, and rejoice
in the grace and salvation that God has given you through
- Consider what things you
have left behind to follow Jesus. What things have you
gained? Commit both losses and gains to God in prayer.
- Make a daily remembrance
of your own Baptism by making the sign of the cross when
you awake. Remember, you have been marked for life!