Week Four Bible Reading Introduction

Week 4: Jesus’ Ministry—Mark

July 22-28

         This week’s reading will move from Matthew to Mark.  We will also use two of the Supplemental Reading days (29th & 30th) to complete our reading of this Gospel.

While Matthew’s original audience was Jewish, Mark’s appears to be Gentile.  This is evident as Mark provides interpretations and meanings of Hebrew and Aramaic words (languages familiar to Jews but not to Greek-speaking Gentiles; see 3:17 as one instance).  He also explains Jewish customs (see 7:3-4).

The gospel of Mark is the shortest of the four.  Hence the individual accounts of the events recorded are typically much briefer in Mark as compared to the others (where the same event is recorded).  Additionally, Mark frequently uses the word “immediately”.  It’s found eleven times in chapter one, 29 times in the first 11 chapters, and 39 times overall.  This in itself creates a sense of urgency in reading this Gospel. Thus, Mark has been described as a “fast-paced” account of Jesus life and ministry.

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