1. Read the headings in Mark 1:1-15.

  2. Find Judea, Jerusalem, Jordan River, Nazareth, and Galilee on the map.

  3. Highlight verses 8, 11, and 15 of chapter 1.

  4. Read Mark 1:1-15.

  5. Consider the following questions.

Mark's story starts with, "The beginning of..." What other Bible story should this remind you of that starts out "in the beginning"?

If you were to write "the gospel according to you," how would you begin the story of Jesus?

FYI: The Greek word translated in the NRSV as "good news" also may be translated "gospel." As in Isaiah 52:7, it relates to the good news of our salvation and peace.

For background on John the Baptist, read Isaiah 40:3 and Malachi 3:1. What is significant about these passages relating to John?

If John the Baptist would show up today, what would happen?

  • he would be locked up for psychological evaluation

  • people would hope he'd go away

  • he would become a popular guest on daytime talk shows

  • he would start an evangelical revival

What is the significance of the heavens tearing and the dove and the voice? (1:9-11) Read Mark 15:37-39. How do these two passages relate?

What happened to John the Baptist? (1:14) What happened to Jesus? (1:12-13 and chapter 15!)