29 May 2013
Last Sunday we began our new series on the gospel of Mark.
It’s the shortest gospel, at just 16 chapters long, and one of the most popular biographical accounts of the life, death, and resurrection of Jesus Christ. Here are four ‘big ideas’ that help us get our bearings:
1) Mark is about what it means for Jesus to be the ‘Son of God’. What does that phrase really mean? Mark fleshes out the profound implications of his claim that Jesus is God’s ‘Son’. If you did a spider diagram of Mark’s gospel, this idea – ‘Jesus the Son of God’ would be in the centre. After all, it’s also his title line (see the first verse of Mark).
2) Mark is about a man, a mission, and a meaning. The great course Christianity Explored emphasises that Mark answers these three questions, ‘who is [this man] Jesus?’; ‘what is his mission?’; and ‘what does it mean to be his follower’?
3) Mark is about God’s hidden, cryptic, secret way of saving people. Although simple and short on the surface, Mark has hidden depths. As we read through it we see that God’s way of achieving rescue and forgiveness comes in a hidden, secret, cryptic way.
4) Mark is about God’s King at war. Jesus comes to announce and inaugurate God’s rule. He does so by subduing his enemies; in Mark, Jesus clearly acts as God’s King – casting out demons, healing sickness, and ultimately defeating sin and death. This is war, and the establishment of a new Kingdom.