The Gospel of Mark

  1. The Gospel according to MarkGospel of Mark: A Biblical History
    The Gospel of Mark is one of the four gospels. This book has 16 chapters and is the shortest of the four gospels.

    Mark (John Mark was his full name) was an associate with Simon Peter, one of the 12 apostles that followed Jesus Christ throughout His public ministry on earth…. the facts contained in Mark’s gospel are thought to be the accounts of Peter during his ministry with Jesus.

    The author, Mark, is mentioned several times in the New Testament starting in the book of Acts, chapters 12 and 13, in Colossians 4:10, and finally in 2 Timothy 4:11.

     Biographical information about the author.

    Mark came from a wealthy family who very likely hosted meetings of early Jerusalem believers, including the Master’s Passover Supper (Mark 14:12-16, Acts 1:13, 12:12).

    It’s possible that the young Mark followed Jesus and the disciples from his house to the Garden of Gethsemane, where he escaped capture only by fleeing naked when temple soldiers snatched at the linen sheet he wrapped around himself (Mark 14:51).

    Barnabas, who first led, then accompanied Paul on the first missionary journey, was a nephew of Mark’s mother and therefore Mark’s cousin (Colossians 4:10). Both Paul and Barnabas esteemed Mark worthy enough to accompany them when they left Jerusalem for Antioch after the famine-visit (Acts 11:27-30, 12:25); and when they began their first missionary journey (Acts 13:5).

    Mark’s spiritual life. A significant failure early in his ministry led to other problems before he began a recovery with personal and spiritual maturity. Whatever the reason, he deserted the missionaries when they arrived at Perga in Pamphylia after leaving Cyprus (Acts 13:13). That reckless irresponsibility led to a bitter dispute between Paul and Barnabas when Barnabas wanted his cousin as part of the team for the second missionary journey, and Paul refused (Acts 15:36-39). Barnabas and Mark sailed away to evangelize Cyprus, and neither is mentioned again in Acts. Mark remained active in ministry, however; a decade or more later, A.D. 60, Paul favorably mentioned Mark in Colossians 4:10. At the end of Paul’s life, A.D. 67, he had become convinced of Mark’s usefulness in ministry.
    Historical background. Written sometime between the late 50’s, to the middle 60’s, many consider it the first gospel composed. Writing from Italy, and explaining Jewish customs (7:2-4, 15:42), and translating Aramaic terms (3:17, 5:41, 7:11, 34, 15:22), Mark targeted Gentiles. Aramaic was a language closely related to Hebrew. The occasion prompting his production was the persecution of Nero. Its purpose was to present Jesus Christ as God’s vigorous, energetic Son, a man of action, who specialized as a teacher of Israel.


    Gospel of Mark: The Outline and Structure
    Introduction:  John the Baptist & Jesus  (1:1-15, incl. the theme of Jesus’ preaching, v. 15)
    Early Ministry:  Jesus heals and preaches, mostly to Jews within Galilee  (1:16 – 7:23)
    Expanded Ministry:  including to some Gentiles (non-Jews) outside of Galilee  (7:24 – 8:21)
    Central Section:  Jesus and his disciples journey “On the Way” to Jerusalem  (8:22 – 10:52)        (incl. three passion predictions, framed by two healings of blind men)
    Final Ministry:  Jesus confronts the authorities in Jerusalem; apocalyptic discourse  (11:1 – 13:37)
    Passion Narrative:  Jesus’ Last Supper, arrest, trials, crucifixion, death, burial  (14:1 – 15:47)
    Conclusion:  the women find Jesus’ tomb empty  (16:1-8) – vv. 9-20 are not original, but added later


    The Gospel of Mark is organized into seven sections that describe the life and ministry of Jesus Christ.

    The first section begins with a quotation from Isaiah, the Old Testament prophet, and John the Baptist, who prophesized the coming of the Messiah. This chapter also details the baptism and the temptation of Jesus.

    The second section Galilean Ministry Jesus calls Simon Peter and his brother Andrew to follow Him for ministry along with the other ten disciples (Mark 1:14-20). Jesus starts performing miracles (See Mark 1:21) …..6:29.

    The third section Jesus and his disciples withdraw from Galilee . The miracle of feeding five thousand people with five loaves of bread and two fish (Mark 6:37-44). The miracle of Jesus walking on water (Mark 6:49), Peter’s confession that Jesus is the Messiah (Mark 8:29), and the transfiguration (Mark 9:2-5). In the last portion of this section Jesus predicts His death and resurrection (Mark 9:32).

    The fourth section, beginning with verse 9:33, covers the period when Jesus goes to Capernaum and preaches to His disciples about who is the greatest (Mark 9:36) and other subjects.

    The fifth section: starting in Chapter 10 Jesus then goes to Judea,. There, He teaches on many subjects, performs the miracle of restoring sight to a blind man that shows faith (Mark 10:52) and again predicts His death and resurrection to His disciples (Mark 10:33, 34).

    Chapters 11 through 15 start with the triumphal entry into Jerusalem on the back of a colt (Mark 11:1-11:11). In Jerusalem, Jesus teaches many lessons through answering questions, telling parables and gives warnings to people.

    The sixth section: The Lord’s Supper is recounted in verses 14:17-26. Jesus is then arrested, tried and crucified on the cross.

    The seventh section of Mark details the account of the resurrection of Jesus Christ from the tomb.


    The message of the Gospel of Mark:
    It aims to show that Jesus Christ is the Messiah  prophesied throughout the Old Testament but he was not that he was not the type of political Messiah that the Jews had envisioned. The true nature of his Messiahship would be understood, even by his disciples, only after his passion, death and resurrection when they, with the centurion at the feet of the cross would declare “Truly this man was God’s Son!”.

    In Jesus the Kingdom of God has come and all are invited to enter. The gospel of Mark is a call to discipleship of Jesus, to a life of faith, to taking a stand on Jesus and not on our own abilities.

    In Christ the Kingdom of God has come: this is shown in the person of Jesus himself and the dramatic descriptions of

    1. a) Christ’s exorcisms of demons (3:11, 5:7, 9:17-18, 25), a power He also bestowed on His disciples (6:7, 13).
      b) Jesus’ healing of illness and disease: fever (1:30-31); leprosy (1:42); paralysis (2:11-12, 3:1, 5); hemorrhage (5:27-34); deafness and muteness (7:31-35); blindness (8:22-26, 10:46-52).
    2. c) Jesus’s power over nature: quieting the lake and wind from the boat (4:35-41); walking on the water (6:45-52); invigorating and multiplying exhausted physical resources (6:30-44, 8:1-13); and over the spirit world – exorcisms, resurrecting the dead (5:21-24, 35-43).
    3. d) Jesus’ authority over and liberating interpretation as regards the Mosaic law that affect people’s lives.

    ( e.g. he touches a leper (1:41); forgives the paralytic’s sins (2:5, 10); clarifies the law regarding the observation of the Sabbath (2:28, 3:1-6); his assertion of authority over Moses in the matter of marriage and divorce (10:1-12)

    An outline of the Gospel of Mark

     1:1-1:8     The Proclamation of John the Baptist 1:9-1:11    The Baptism of Jesus 1:12-1:13   The Temptation of Jesus 1:14-1:15   The Beginning of the Galilean Ministry 1:16-1:20   Jesus Calls the First Disciples 1:21-1:28   The Man with an Unclean Spirit 1:29-1:34   Jesus Heals Many at Simon’s House 1:35-1:39   A Preaching Tour in Galilee 1:40-1:45   Jesus Cleanses a Leper  2:1-2:12    Jesus Heals a Paralytic 2:13-2:17   Jesus Calls Levi 2:18-2:22   The Question about Fasting 2:23-2:28   Pronouncement about the Sabbath  3:1-3:6     The Man with a Withered Hand 3:7-3:12    A Multitude at the Seaside 3:13-3:19   Jesus Appoints the Twelve 3:30-3:30   Jesus and Beelzebul 3:31-3:35   The True Kindred of Jesus  4:1-4:9     The Parable of the Sower 4:10-4:20   The Purpose of the Parables 4:21-4:25   A Lamp under a Bushel Basket 4:26-4:29   The Parable of the Growing Seed 4:30-4:32   The Parable of the Mustard Seed 4:33-4:34   The Use of Parables 4:35-4:41   Jesus Stills a Storm  5:1-5:20    Jesus Heals the Gerasene Demoniac 5:21-5:43   A Girl Restored to Life and a Woman Healed  6:1-6:6     The Rejection of Jesus at Nazareth 6:7-6:13    The Mission of the Twelve 6:14-6:29   The Death of John the Baptist 6:30-6:44   Feeding the Five Thousand 6:45-6:52   Jesus Walks on the Water 6:53-6:56   Healing the Sick in Gennesaret  7:1-7:23    The Tradition of the Elders 7:24-7:30   The Syrophoenician Woman’s Faith 7:31-7:37   Jesus Cures a Deaf Man  8:1-8:10    Feeding the Four Thousand 8:11-8:13   The Demand for a Sign 8:14-8:21   The Yeast of the Pharisees and of Herod 8:22-8:26   Jesus Cures a Blind Man at Bethsaida 8:27-8:30   Peter’s Declaration about Jesus 8:31-8:38   Jesus Foretells His Death and Resurrection  9:1-9:8     The Transfiguration 9:9-9:13    The Coming of Elijah 9:14-9:29   The healing of a Boy with a Spirit 9:30-9:32   Jesus Again Foretells His Death and Resurrection 9:33-9:37   Who Is The Greatest? 9:38-9:41   Another Exorcist 9:42-9:50   Temptation to Sin 10:1-10:12   Teaching about Divorce10:13-10:16  Jesus Blesses Little Children10:17-10:31  The Rich Man10:32-10:34  A Third Time Jesus Foretells His Death and Resurrection10:35-10:45  The Request of James and John10:46-10:52  The Healing of Blind Bartimaeus 11:1-11:11   Jesus’ Triumphant Entry into Jerusalem11:12-11:14  Jesus Curses the Fig Tree11:15-11:19  Jesus Cleanses the Temple11:20-11:26  The Lesson from the Withered Fig Tree11:27-11:33  Jesus’ Authority Is Questioned 12:1-12:12   The Parable of the Wicked Tenants12:13-12:17  The Question about Paying Taxes12:18-12:27  The Question about the Resurrection12:28-12:34  The First Commandment12:35-12:37  The Question about David’s Son12:38-12:40  Jesus Denounces the Scribes12:41-12:44  The Widow’s Offering 13:1-13:8    The Destruction of the Temple Foretold13:9-13:13   Persecution Foretold13:14-13:23  The Desolating Sacrilege13:24-13:27  The Coming of the Son of Man13:28-13:31  The Lesson of the Fig Tree13:32-13:37  The Necessity for Watchfulness 14:1-14:2    The Plot to Kill Jesus14:3-14:9    The Anointing at Bethany14:10-14:11  Judas Agrees to Betray Jesus14:12-14:21  The Passover with the Disciples14:22-14:25  The Institution of the Lord’s Supper14:26-14:31  Peter’s Denial Foretold14:32-14:42  Jesus Prays in Gethsemene14:43-14:52  The Betrayal and Arrest of Jesus14:53-14:65  Jesus before the Council14:66-14:72  Peter Denies Jesus 15:1-15:5    Jesus before Pilate15:6-15:15   Pilate Hands Jesus over to Be Crucified15:16-15:20  The Soldiers Mock Jesus15:21-15:32  The Crucifixion of Jesus15:33-15:41  The Death of Jesus15:42-15:47  The Burial of Jesus 16:1-16:8    The Resurrection of Jesus16:9-16:11   Jesus Appears to Mary Magdalene16:12-16:13  Jesus Appears to Two Disciples16:14-16:18  Jesus Commissions the Disciples

    16:19-16:20  The Ascension of Jesus





    gdom, and the Church (13:54 – 18:35)

  2. Ministry in Judea and Jerusalem (19:1 – 25:46)

  3. The Passion and Resurrection (26:1 – 28:20)

A brief introduction to the Gospel of Matthew taken from Wikipedia, the free encyclopedia

The Gospel According to Matthew  also called the Gospel of Matthew or simply Matthew) is the first book of the New Testament. The narrative tells how the Messiah, Jesusrejected by Israel, finally send the disciples to preach the gospel to the whole world.

Most scholars believe the Gospel of Matthew was composed between AD 80 and 90, with a range of possibility between AD 70 to 110 (a pre-70 date remains a minority view). The anonymous author was probably a male Jew, standing on the margin between traditional and non-traditional Jewish values, and familiar with technical legal aspects of scripture being debated in his time. Writing in a polished Semitic “synagogue Greek”,he drew on three main sources: the Gospel of Mark, the hypothetical collection of sayings known as the Q source, and material unique to his own community, called the M source or “Special Matthew”.

The divine nature of Jesus was a major issue for the Matthaean community, the crucial element marking them from their Jewish neighbours; while Mark begins with baptism and transifiguration, Matthew goes back further still, showing Jesus as the Son of God from his birth, the fulfillment of Old Testament messianic prophecies The title Son of David identifies Jesus as the healing and miracle-working Messiah of Israel (it is used exclusively in relation to miracles), sent to Israel alone. As Son of Man he will return to judge the world, a fact his disciples recognise but of which his enemies are unaware. As Son of God he is God revealing himself through his son, and Jesus proving his sonship through his obedience and example.

The gospel reflects the struggles and conflicts between the evangelist’s community and the other Jews, particularly with its sharp criticism of the scribes and Pharisees. Prior to the Crucifixtion the Jews are called Israelites, the honorific title of God’s chosen people; after it, they are called “loudaioi“, Jews, a sign that through their rejection of the Christ the “Kingdom of Heaven” has been taken away from them and given instead to the church.

Structure and content as given on the Wikipedia article::

1. Prologue: genealogy, Nativity and infancy

2. First narrative and discourse

3. Second narrative and discourse

4 Third narrative and discourse

5 Fourth narrative and discourse

6. Fifth narrative and discourse

7. Conclusion: Passion, resurrection and Great Commission