My daily exploration of the Bible, taking it one chapter at a time. If I do it everyday, it'll take 1189 days.

Monday, July 02, 2007

Mark 1

Synoptic problems

John came baptising and preaching repentance and that someone better was coming after him. He baptised Jesus, and God specially anointed him as his son. Jesus was then tempted in the desert.

After John went to prison, Jesus began to preach and called Peter, Andrew, James and John.

He cast out a demon in a synagogue to much amazement. He healed many in that town including Peter's mother-in-law.

Jesus healed a leper, but told him to keep quiet. But he didn't. So Jesus was mobbed wherever he went.

Key verse:
17. "Come, follow me," Jesus said, "and I will make you fishers of men."

My thoughts:
So as you may know, Matthew, Mark, and Luke have strong similarities. They are not so similar to be straight copies of one another, but they were obviously influenced by one another. John is a whole other kettle of walnuts.

Anyway, there is a lot of discussion about the relationship between these synoptic gospels. The most popular theory is that Matthew and Luke draw on two sources. Mark and another lost text called Q (containing the content of the Sermon on the Mount for example) . This puts Mark is the untraditional position of being the first gospel written.

This view is held because Mark is shorter, and generally the changes made from Mark in the other gospels makes Jesus look better. Though Mark certainly doesn't make him look bad!

Anyway, this view is not unanimous, and is definitely a scholarship view rather than a faith-based one. The early church saw the apostle as author of Matthew, and saw it as the earlier text. In 1911, the Catholics concluded that Matthew was the first gospel, written by the apostle originally in Aramaic.


Blogger Deane said...

Mark Crossley argues that Mark dates to the late 30s AD, in The Date of Mark's Gospel: Insight from the Law in Earliest Christianity (2004)

This book has been followed up by Why Christianity Happened: A Sociohistorical Account of Christian Origins 26-50 CE (2006).

I haven't read these yet.

5:12 pm

Blogger Pete W said...

Very interesting. Couldn't find the first article online, but found this review. Fuller seems skeptical, but respectful of the points Crossley raises. The final comment is interesting in regard to today's post, that is Mark 7.

Your second reference doesn't interest me as much. It looks like an interesting secular exploration of early Christianity.

Interesting finds...

10:23 pm


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