Bible Study of the Gospel Writers
The Gospel, the Writer, and YOU!
Gospel of Mark
The Gospel Writers
Mark's Gospel Reveals
Jesus, the Servant King!
When you see this cross, it is a suggested stopping place.
Each Gospel lesson will have five crosses and can be used as one week of studies!
Stop and reflect A new beginning.
The Gospel of Mark, probably written sometime between 50 and 60 A.D., records the last three years in the life of Jesus, in geographical order. Mark takes us from the water baptism by John the Baptist in the Jordon River and the teaching ministry in and around Galalie, to Jerusalem where our Lord fulfilled His Messianic mission. Mark moves swiftly but pays close attention to detail. He gives us glimpses into the looks and gestures of Jesus. He groups accounts together as they can best present the gospel message.
It is believed Matthew and Luke used Mark's words, polished the language a bit and added new material in chronological order. Matthew and Luke each had a different audience to address, increasing understanding of the Messiah and fulfillment of His mission from their own knowledge of the ministry of Jesus.
Christians followed the traditions and practices of the Jewish community in the handing down of the accounts of God in detail by memorization. As the Gospel of Jesus Christ began to spread, those with eye witness knowledge of the accounts began to write them in manuscripts. The early church leaders accepted Mark's account into the New Testament Canon in the second century, as having been dictated by Simon Peter. He quickly establishes Jesus as the Son of God!
- The beginning of the gospel about Jesus Christ, the Son of God. Mark 1:1
John the Baptist announces the arrival of the long awaited Messiah. Old Testament prophets foretold the coming of the great one, the Anointed One, sent by God who would offer salvation and inner peace not only to Israel but to the entire world.
"For even the Son of Man did not come to be served, but to serve, and to give his life as a ransom for many." Mark 10:45
Jesus Christ, the Son of God, lived his life on earth and conducted His ministry in total dependence upon the Holy Spirit as an example of how we are to live.
Jesus, full of the Holy Spirit, returned from the Jordan and was led by the Spirit in the desert, Luke 4:1
The first half of the Gospel of Mark is dedicated to the servant ministry of Jesus. He preformed many miracles to convince the people who He was and to teach His disciples His true identity as God! Mark recounts Jesus' public ministry of healing and teaching. He raised the dead, gave sight to the blind, hearing to the deaf, restored deformed bodies, quieted stormy seas, and extended forgiveness of sin. He came to conquer sin and death. Death on the cross was His ultimate service.
Praise be to Our Serving Christ! Amen
How do you serve God and others? Think about it!
They left that place and passed through Galilee. Jesus did not want anyone to know where they were, because he was teaching his disciples. He said to them, "The Son of Man is going to be betrayed into the hands of men. They will kill him, and after three days he will rise." Mark 9:30-31
Thanks be to Our Sacrificing Savior! Amen
How do you sacrifice for God and others? Think about it!
Many parallels are found in this Gospel between the suffering and death of Christians in Rome and the mission of Jesus Christ.
Living in Rome at the time of the writing of this manuscript, Mark wrote His Gospel to comfort the Roman Christians who were under persecution from Nero. After Nero had burned down Rome, in order to take the heat off of himself, He used the Christians as scapegoats and began gathering them for execution. He chose them because of their anti-social ways, dressed them in wild animals' skins to be torn to pieces by dogs, crucified them, or made them into torches to be ignited after dark as a substitute for daylight. It was Nero who first brought martyrdom to the early church. These victims were pitied as they were sacrificed to Nero's brutality. They had not presented any threat to Roman rule.
Mark's intention was to strengthen the faith of the Roman believers as they faced this persecution. He wanted to inspire them to suffer faithfully for the sake of the gospel. He placed before them the life, suffering, crucifixion and resurrection of Jesus their Lord. Jesus gave His life that mankind would know about God's love for them.
Then he called the crowd to him along with his disciples and said: "If anyone would come after me, he must deny himself and take up his cross and follow me. Mark 8:34
Glory and Honor be to Our Saving Lord! Amen
Jesus spent three years teaching his disciples and preparing them for what would take place, but they still would not understand God's plan to resurrect Jesus. He would be the final atonement for sin in the world. He would bring man into a personal relationship with God. Jesus was "The Holy Lamb of God!"
They put a purple robe on him, then twisted together a crown of thorns and set it on him. And they began to call out to him, "Hail, king of the Jews!" Mark 15:17-18
Again and again they struck him on the head with a staff and spit on him. Falling on their knees, they paid homage to him. And when they had mocked him, they took off the purple robe and put his own clothes on him. Then they led him out to crucify him. Mark 15:19-20
Jesus was with God from the beginning. We have already established that means forever. He was with God, and He was God. John 1:1 Suffering the cross and bearing the sins of the world meant that He had to die as a man and be separated from the Father until the third day. This knowledge brought Jesus into such agony in the garden of Gethsemane, his sweat turned to blood. He was prepared to go to the cross and die for us, but separation from the Father would bring unbearable torment.
Jesus called out with a loud voice, "Father, into your hands I commit my spirit." When he had said this, he breathed his last. Luke 23:46
"Don't be alarmed," he said. "You are looking for Jesus the Nazarene, who was crucified. He has risen! He is not here. See the place where they laid him Mark 16:6
His death and resurrection made a way for us to be connected in Spirit with the Father. When we die, there will be no separation from God, only our resurrection to new life with Him. Those who believe in Him will not experience eternal Hell. He took our punishment and we can live with Him for eternity in heaven.
How do you use the resurrection power?
How do you allow the Holy Spirit to work in your life?
Think about it!
John Mark was the son of Mary (of Mary and Martha fame - sisters of Lazarus, another lesson) and lived in the house where the disciples and Jesus were known to gather in Jerusalem. A Jewish Christian converted by Peter, who called him, 'my son'. He was also a cousin to Barnabas. Mark traveled with Barnabas and Paul on the first missionary journey to Antioch. He went as far as Perga, but abandoned the trip to return home, either homesick or in fear as the journey proceeded into dangerous territory. Paul and Barnabas planted many churches as they took the gospel to the gentiles. Paul could not trust taking Mark on the second missionary journey. Barnabas took Mark to Cyprus training him in the ministry. Paul chose Silas and headed to Galatia and Macedonia, doubling the strength of the mission.
Paul makes it clear in his letters Mark becomes most valuable to him in the ministry and as a personal friend. Paul sent him on a mission to Asia Minor and requested he join Timothy's ministry in Rome. He later calls for Mark to come to him during the final days of his last imprisonment and at the end of his life. Mark later planted a church in Alexandria, Egypt where he died.
Mark wrote his Gospel under the direction and inspiration of the Holy Spirit. The original writings were dictated by Peter. The writing style is that of Peter's and Mark records in detail the accounts where Peter was present. Remember:
All Scripture is God-breathed and is useful for teaching, rebuking, correcting and training in righteousness, so that the man of God may be thoroughly equipped for every good work. Tim. 3:16-17
I pray that through this lesson you have learned the value of becoming a servant to others for the sake of the gospel. God will be with you as you seek to serve Him and others. There is power in the Name of Jesus and Power in His Word. Now that I have researched this for you (and me), I am going to go back and re-read the book of Mark. I hope you will too! We need to pray for better understanding and for God to speak to our hearts through His Word. God says we must pray for wisdom. He will honor that prayer! Praise, Honor and Glory be unto Him.
Don't forget to go back now and read the Gospel of Matthew.
To start at the beginning of the Gospel Writer's series: click here!
To go to the entrance of the Teen Cave: click here!
The Teen Caverns "Enlighten Me" studies referenced from these sources:
- Influential! Cavern
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