Dr. Lawrence Butler, The Bridge Church, Pembroke.
“The beginning of the gospel of Jesus Christ, the Son of God;” Mark 1:1).
And so begins the writing of a young man who knew Jesus Christ and is thought to have been a good friend and comrade of the Apostle Peter. He is referred to as John Mark in Acts 12:25, was apparently the nephew of Barnabas, and travelled with him and Paul on a missionary journey. He left them and became estranged from Paul for a while, but later was a companion and friend of Paul at the end of Paul’s ministry. This gospel has been thought to have been influenced heavily by Peter, and who may have provided much of the material found in it.
It is thought that the intended audience for this manuscript was Gentile, possibly even Roman, believers. It was not especially adapted for Jewish readers as it contains very few references to the Old Testament. Explanations of Jewish words or customs occur to help the reader (3:17, 5:41, 7:1-4,11,34).
The picture of Christ is that of a “tireless servant.”
See His devotions as they are interrupted (1:35-37).
He has little time to eat (3:20). He was so involved with healing and delivering people until even His disciples said, “He is beside himself” (3:21). He was pursued when He sought rest (6:31-34). A careful study of the book will reveal that the author made no attempt to proclaim the deity of Jesus, but rather wanted the great works He performed to reveal His deity to man. There are nineteen miracles recorded in this gospel. Eight of them prove His power over disease. Five show His power over nature. Four demonstrate His authority over demons, and two reflect His conquest of death.
There are six Parts to the Gospel I. The introductory events leading up to Christ’s public ministry (1:1-13) HL 1:13
II. The early Galilean ministry (1:14-7:23) HL 5:4-5
III. The tour to Tyre and Sidon (7:24-30) HL
IV. Christ’s teaching and work in Northern Galilee (7:31- 9:50) HL 9:44
V. The closing ministry in Perea ((10:1-52) HL 10:35-37
VI. The events of Passion Week (11- 16:8) HL 16:17-20