Survey of the Bible - Mark

Text: Mark 10:35-45


I.         The gospel of Mark is the shortest of the four gospels.

            A.        It has few comments. Instead the narrative tells the story in a fast-paced fashion.

                        1.         The word “immediately” appears 36 times in this small book.

                        2.         Mark skips over most of Jesus’ early years to get to the beginning of his ministry

            B.        The original title for the book was “According to Mark”

                        1.         All early Christian writers state that Mark is the author of this gospel.

                        2.         “Again, in the same books [the Hypotyposeis], Clement gives the tradition of the earliest presbyters, as to the order of the Gospels, in the following manner: "The Gospels containing the genealogies, he says, were written first. The Gospel according to Mark had this occasion. As Peter had preached the Word publicly at Rome, and declared the Gospel by the Spirit, many who were present requested that Mark, who had followed him for a long time and remembered his sayings, should write them out. And having composed the Gospel he gave it to those who had requested it. When Peter learned of this, he neither directly forbade nor encouraged it. But, last of all, John, perceiving that the external facts had been made plain in the Gospel, being urged by his friends, and inspired by the Spirit, composed a spiritual Gospel." This is the account of Clement.” [Eusebius, Ecclesiastical History, 6.14.5-7]

                        3.         Peter was believed to have been killed in A.D. 64, so Mark was probably written in the late 50's or very early 60's.

II.        The author

            A.        Like many people in this time, Mark had two names. John was his Hebrew name and Marcus was his Latin name - Acts 12:12

            B.        Mark’s mother was one of the Mary’s mentioned in the Bible, and it was to Mary’s house that Peter went when released from prison - Acts 12:13-16

                        1.         Notice that the maid recognized Peter’s voice, so he must have came by at least several times before.

                        2.         It is likely that Peter is the one who converted him - I Peter 5:13

            C.        His cousin was Barnabas - Colossians 4:10

                        1.         Saul (later Paul) and Barnabas had taken Mark with them on their journey from Jerusalem to Antioch - Acts 12:25

                        2.         When they later went on their first journey, Mark went with them - Acts 13:5

                        3.         However, Mark didn’t finish the journey - Acts 13:13

                        4.         When it came time for the second journey, Barnabas wanted to take Mark, but Paul as firmly against it - Acts 15:36-41

                        5.         It isn’t that the rift was permanent.

                                    a.         Mark was with Paul during his imprisonment in Roman - Colossians 4:10; Philemon 24

                                    b.         At the end of Paul’s life, he sent for Mark - II Timothy 4:11

            D.        Given that the Gospel writers tended to avoid naming themselves in their own books, it is suspected that Mark was the young man in Mark 14:51-52. A detail that is mentioned in no other gospel.

III.       Purpose

            A.        What we first note is what is not in Mark: There is no genealogy, no mentioned of prophecies fulfilled, no references to the Law to prove a point

                        1.         These are things of interest to a Jewish audience but not for a Gentile audience

                        2.         Aramaic words are translated - Mark 3:17; 5:14; 7:34; 15:22

                        3.         Jewish customs explained - Mark 7:3-4; 14:12; 15:42

                        4.         Roman time is used. Jews used 3 night watches. The Romans 4 - Mark 6:48; 13:35

                        5.         “In language, Mark shows a distinct preference for Latin technical terms, particularly terms connected with the army (e.g. legion, Ch. 5:9; praetorium, Ch. 15:16; centurion, Ch. 15:39), the courts (e.g. speculator, Ch. 6:27; flagellare, Ch. 15:15) and commerce (e.g. denarius, Ch. 12:15; quadrans, Ch. 12:42). Although such terms were in use throughout the empire, it is particularly significant that twice common Greek expressions in the Gospel are explained by Latin ones (Ch. 12:42, ‘two copper coins [lepta], which make a quadrans’; Ch. 15:16, ‘the palace, that is the praetorium’). The first of these examples is particularly instructive, for the quadrans was not in circulation in the east. The presence of latinisms and of technical terminology confined to the west is harmonious with the tradition that Mark was written in Rome.” [William L. Lane, The Gospel According To Mark, pp. 24–25].

                        6.         Mark only mentions that Simon of Cyrene was Rufus’ father - Mark 15:21; Romans 16:13

            B.        The book is written as a topical narrative focusing on the deeds of Jesus

                        1.         19 miracles of Jesus are recorded, showing his power and his compassion.

                        2.         Emphasis is placed on Jesus’ service to mankind - Mark 10:45

                        3.         This particular style of writing was popular among the Romans

            C.        Thus it is concluded that Mark was aiming to reach Gentiles, and Romans in particular.

IV.      Outline

            A.        Introduction to the Servant - Mark 1:1-2:12

                        1.         John - Mark 1:1-8

                        2.         Jesus’ Anointing and temptations - Mark 1:9-13

                        3.         The first disciples - Mark 1:14-20

                        4.         Early miracles - Mark 1:21-2:12

            B.        Opposed by his own people - Mark 2:13-3:35

                        1.         His friendships - Mark 2:13-22

                        2.         Sabbath working - Mark 2:23-3:5

                        3.         Decision to kill Jesus - Mark 3:6-12

                        4.         The apostles selected - Mark 3:13-19

                        5.         Called insane - Mark 3:20-30

                        6.         Independence from his family - Mark 3:31-35

            C.        Parables - Mark 4:1-34

                        1.         The Sower - Mark 4:1-20

                        2.         The Lamp - Mark 4:21-25

                        3.         The Seed - Mark 4:26-29

                        4.         The Mustard Seed - Mark 4:30-34

            D.        Miracles - Mark 4:35-5:43

                        1.         Calming the Sea - Mark 4:35-41

                        2.         Demons cast out - Mark 5:1-20

                        3.         Raising of Jarius’ daughter - Mark 5:21-24, 35-43

                        4.         Healing the woman with an issue of blood - Mark 5:25-34

            E.        Evidence - Mark 6:1-9:29

                        1.         Rejection at Nazareth - Mark 6:1-6

                        2.         Twelve sent and John is killed - Mark 6:7-31

                        3.         Feeding of the five thousand - Mark 6:32-44

                        4.         Jesus walks on water - Mark 6:45-52

                        5.         Casting out demons - Mark 6:53-56

                        6.         Syro-Phoenician woman healed - Mark 7:24-30

                        7.         Deaf mute man healed - Mark 7:31-37

                        8.         Feeding of the four thousand - Mark 8:1-9

                        9.         Beware the Pharisees - Mark 8:10-21

                        10.       Blind man healed - Mark 8:22-26

                        11.       Peter’s confession - Mark 8:27-33

                        12.       Cost of discipleship - Mark 8:34-38

                        13.       Transfiguration - Mark 9:1-13

                        14.       Demon possessed son healed - Mark 9:14-29

            F.        Instruction - Mark 9:30-10:52

                        1.         Foretells death - Mark 9:30-32

                        2.         Attitudes - Mark 9:33-41

                        3.         Warnings on Hell - Mark 9:42-50

                        4.         Marriage and Divorce - Mark 10:1-12

                        5.         The Kingdom - Mark 10:13-16

                        6.         Wealth - Mark 10 :17-31

                        7.         Coming crucifixion - Mark 10:32-34

                        8.         Servanthood - Mark 10:35-45

                        9.         Bartimaeus healed - Mark 10:46-52

            G.        Final week - Mark 11:1-15:47

                        1.         Triumphal Entry - Mark 11:1-11

                        2.         Fig tree cursed - Mark 11:12-14

                        3.         Cleansing of the temple - Mark 11:15-19

                        4.         Instruction on Prayer - Mark 11:20-26

                        5.         Opposition by the Leaders - Mark 11:27-12:44

                        6.         Future events - Mark 13

                        7.         The death of Jesus - Mark 14-15

            H.        The resurrection of Jesus - Mark 16

V.        The entire Gospel of Mark could be read out loud in an hour and a half

            A.        Opens - Mark 1:1

            B.        Closes - Mark 16:15

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