Reading of the Gospel of Mark

On the 6th of August we started our daily readings of the Gospel of Mark. Also the Belgian Bible Students are now looking at that most chronological book of the gospels. It is probable that he is the Mark referred to four times in Acts, called John Mark in Acts 12:12. Most of the stories or placed in chronological order and though it is the shortest of the gospels it has most of the events told in it.

Most of the activities are happening in Gallilee where Jesus started his work. Capernaum was the home base of his public life period. With this book we are brought ahead to the important matter to come to recognise who Jesus is and to repent. Mark assumes the existence of another body of disciples wider than the Twelve (3: 32; 4:10, 36; 8: 34; 14: 51, 52). Because he was writing mainly for gentiles there was no use to mention referrals to the old books [The word Law (νομος) does not once occur], he wrote in Greek and was to present a clear and vivid picture of the acts of his master’s public life, rather than a full record of his divine doctrine.

Baronius on the authority of an old Syriac translation, asserts that Latin was the original language; and some MSS. referred to in Scholz (Greek Test. p. xxx.) repeat the same; but this arises no doubt from the belief that it was written at Rome and for Gentiles. This opinion and its grounds Wahl has travestied by supposing that the Gospel was written at Alexandria in Coptic. A Latin Gospel written for the use of Roman Christians would not have been lost without any mention of it in an ancient writer.

Mark clearly present Jesus as the son of God, and not as a god who came onto the earth to fake his death (because God cannot die). Though this gospel writer shows why this man of flesh and blood is so important and should be recognised as the sent one from God.

Mark also wants to show to Gentiles and Jews that we have to do with a king. The king of the kingdom was here, and if they had accepted him, the kingdom would have become a reality; but it was not to be – at least not yet. It is reasonable to think his Gospel was written and circulated before Jerusalem fell 40 years later.

The third chapter of the book is also of certain importance for today. Because today we still find a lot of blind people in synagogues, temples, churches and worship houses. Next to the blind men are blind guides, blind leaders, who try to blind other people so that they would not come to see the Biblical truth but shall go by the human traditions and theological human teachings.

Mark also has it about people with a hardness of their hearts or, obstinacy. Also today in all those so-called places of worship we can find lots of people whose minds are closed for the Biblical Truth, For the majority, it is much easier to keep to human traditions and to follow words of men they can see instead of words of someone they sometimes doubt if he exists.

Already in the chapter we read today, we learn that the religious leaders were not pleased with the position Jesus was getting and therefore wanted to kill him.

“ And the Pharisees went out, and straightway with the Herodians took counsel against him, how they might destroy him.” (Mr 3:6 ASV)

Luke has it

“that they might find how to accuse him” (ινα ευρωσιν κατηγορειν αυτου).

They were determined to accuse him.

At that time they brought forward something which is up to today a matter of discussion by many, namely the sabbath controversy, which offered the best opening for the adversaries of Christ.

Carnal men do still watch and pry into professors and their conversation, curiously observing what they may catch and carp at.

The apostle Mark presents a simple man preaching, pursuing souls, sacrificing himself for all, proving himself to be the possessor of divine power through his deeds, of which he is very well aware that he could not do them without the heavenly Power of his heavenly Father, the Only True God. While at the same time hiding himself from the observations of men in order to fulfil, outside the realm of their applause, the service he had assumed: this was his service, his life as a man hereafter, all in the Name of the Elohim Hashem Jehovah, Whose Will Jesus wanted to do.

The apostle Mark shows how unselfish Christ showed his love to others and used the power given by his heavenly Father not to make him greater, but to help others, by curing them and giving them a new life.

The chapters in the Gospel of Mark show that the ancient leaders spoke in a way that was designed to extol their own self-importance, and as a result it was unconvincing. How few teachers of the Gospel get to the heart of the message; many preach little more than the second commandment –

“love your neighbour as yourself”.

Jesus performed miracles; these attracted masses of people to listen, and as a result

“they were all amazed, so that they questioned among themselves, saying, ‘What is this? A new teaching with authority!’” (Mark 1: 27).

The 1st chapter ends by telling us there was so much talk about him

“that Jesus could no longer openly enter a town, but was out in desolate places, and people were coming to him from every quarter”.

But when Jesus began to teach in detail, many lost interest; they had loved the loaves and the fishes and seeing the miracles, but John’s Gospel tells us

“many of his disciples turned back and no longer walked with him” (6:66).

But Jesus had said (verse 63)

“The words that I have spoken to you are spirit and life”.

These words have been preserved for us; this is the “new teaching with authority” – and those who read and absorb what they read will not turn back.

At first Jesus strictly commanded his disciples and those who he healed not to reveal yet who he was.

“11 And the unclean spirits, whensoever they beheld him, fell down before him, and cried, saying, Thou art the Son of God. 12 And he charged them much that they should not make him known.

13  And he goeth up into the mountain, and calleth unto him whom he himself would; and they went unto him. 14 And he appointed twelve, that they might be with him, and that he might send them forth to preach, 15 and to have authority to cast out demons:” (Mr 3:11-15 ASV)

In this 3rd chapter we get another aspect of Mark’s writings, him giving more names than the others, so that we can come to know all those who were chosen by Jesus. But we learn also that not all found Jesus with a sound mind.

“21 And when his friends heard it, they went out to lay hold on him: for they said, He is beside himself. 22  And the scribes that came down from Jerusalem said, He hath Beelzebub, and, By the prince of the demons casteth he out the demons.” (Mr 3:21-22 ASV)

At the end of chapter 3 we also learn what is explained more in the other chapters, that whoever does the will of the God is the same as his brother, or sister, or mother.

“ For whosoever shall do the will of God, the same is my brother, and sister, and mother.” (Mr 3:35 ASV)

It is for that brotherhood we should strive, by believing the words which were notated by the apostle Mark and by the other disciples of Christ.

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Preceding

What governed the inclusion of some and the exclusion of other texts in the Bible?

Today’s Thought “Witnessing servants of God” (June 19)

Today’s thought “According to your faith” (July 8)

Today’s thought “The time is fulfilled” (August 06)

Outflow of foundational relationship based on acceptance of Jesus

Blindness in the Christian world

Have you also been deceived

Searching, light, fear and deliverance

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Additional reading

  1. 1,500-year-old marble tablet at the Sea of Galilee suggesting place was once a Jewish or Jewish-Christian settlement
  2. Mark – The Nazarene’s Commentary: Introduction to Mark
  3. Mark 3 – The Nazarene’s Commentary: Mark 3:1-6 – A Withered Hand Cured on the Sabbath
  4. Mark 3 – The Nazarene’s Commentary: Mark 3:7-12 – Crowds Follow Jesus
  5. Mark 3 – The Nazarene’s Commentary: Mark 3:13-19 – Formation of Group of the Apostles
  6. Mark 3 – The Nazarene’s Commentary: Mark 3:20-30 – Accusations of Everlasting Sin
  7. Mark 3 – The Nazarene’s Commentary: Mark 3:31-35 – Spiritual Brotherhood
  8. 14 Nisan a day to remember #2 Time of Jesus
  9. A voice cries out: context
  10. Colour-blindness and road code
  11. Matthew 15:1-20 – The Nazarene’s Commentary: Tradition and the Heart
  12. Matthew 23:16-22 – The Nazarene’s Commentary: Woe 3: Blind Guides and Gold

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Related

  1. What is the Gospel of Mark? – Author, Date, Purpose, and Themes
  2. Mark 3
  3. Mark 3: Acknowledge the Lord
  4. Pastor Rick’s Study Notes on Mark 1:1-15
  5. Are You Out of Your Mind? (Mk 3:20-35)
  6. Scriptural Meditation- Mark 3:24
  7. In Relationship with Him
  8. Who Knows the Will of God?
  9. Jesus Asked The Man With The Withered Hand To Do Something Impossible To Be Healed
  10. Jesus is Misunderstood- Worship Resources based on Mark 3.20-35
  11. House Divided (Mark 3:20-35) Sunday School Lesson and Activities
  12. Sunday Morning Worship – August 9, 2020 – How to Accuse Jesus
  13. Is Jesus warning us?
  14. Is Satan fighting Satan? What does Jesus think?
  15. The Spiritual Crisis of the Christ
  16. Is obedience thicker than blood?
  17. Friday, August 6, 2021
  18. Opening the Eyes
  19. Conquering the enemy’s strongholds
  20. The Sound of Silence
  21. Jesus The OccultistA Sermon about LoveGetting back to the soul
  22. Perpetual student
  23. Mark 6:1-6 Rejection
  24. Two by Two: My Sermon on Mark 6:1-13
  25. Resting with Jesus: My Sermon on Mark 6:30-34
  26. Mark 6:45 – In the Boat
  27. How to Believe [Mark 9:23 Devotional]
  28. Why is Jesus angry and indignant? What upsets Him so much?
  29. How to Pray with Faith [Mark 11:24 Devotional]
  30. How do we respond?

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