Summary: 8. The Gospel by Mark is a record of virtually non-stop activity carried out at a rapid-fire pace. The key term repeated over 40 times in this first account of the life of Jesus, the Servant of God, is eutheos, the Greek word for “immediately.” Mark wast
The Gospel of Mark #1 – “Jesus on the Move”
1. ILL – Famous first lines…Books – 1) “Call me Ishmael” (Moby Dick). 2) “It was the best of times, it was the worst of times.”(A Tale of Two Cities). 3) “Marley was dead to begin with.” (A Christmas Carol). Historical documents – 1) “4 Score & Seven years ago” (Gettysburg Address). 2) “When in the Course of human events it becomes necessary for one people to dissolve the political bands” (Declaration of Independence). TV & Movies – 1) “Space…the final frontier” (Star Trek) ***2) “A long time ago, in a galaxy far, far away…” (Star Wars).”
2. The first line is incredibly important! It can capture your attention or lose it.
3. Matthew begins his Gospel by sharing the genealogy of Jesus. He feels the need to prove that Jesus is a Son of Abraham & a Son of David. Luke begins by talking about the events which lead up to the birth of the Lord Jesus. John’s Gospel starts out in eternity past reminding us that Jesus is God in the flesh. Mark does not start out by talking about the Lord’s heritage or His birth. Mark’s desire is to present Jesus as a servant and a servant does not need a genealogy. Mark begins by jumping right into the action.
4. Mark’s first sentence serves as a title to the book & plunges us immediately into the earthly ministry of Jesus. Mark is going to share with his readers the good news concerning who Jesus is & what He did while He was here.
5. Mark 1:1 (Read together).
6. I have entitled this series, “The Gospel of Mark - Jesus on the Move.”
7. Action. Involvement. Movement. Engagement. Service.
8. The Gospel by Mark is a record of virtually non-stop activity carried out at a rapid-fire pace. The key term repeated over 40 times in this first account of the life of Jesus, the Servant of God, is eutheos, the Greek word for “immediately.” Mark wastes neither time nor words as he portrays the Savior at work, continually serving others.
9. The tone of the writer is practical, not mystical or philosophical, which had an appeal to the industrious Roman mind. The lack of emphasis on anything pertaining to the Jewish ancestry of Jesus makes good sense, since Mark’s audience is mainly the Gentile reader.
10. While others refer to Jesus as “Lord” and “King,” Mark prefers “Master,” again underscoring the vocabulary of a servant.
11. The hinge of the book pivots on a single verse –
12. Mark 10:45 “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.”
13. Mark is the shortest of the four gospels & likely the first one written. However, it is often overlooked because of the popularity of the other gospels.
14. Yet because of its brevity Mark's gospel is an ideal introduction to the Christian faith & in mission fields it is often the first book translated into a new language.
I. Who was John Mark?
Since the 1st & 2nd century there has been unanimous support for John Mark authoring the gospel which bears his name.
A. He was the son of a Christian mom – Acts 12:12
1. History provides us with a limited biography of John Mark. He was a young man when Jesus was crucified. We don’t know how he came to faith in Jesus but it’s likely that his mother was one of the early Christ-followers.
2. We know from scripture that she was a wealthy woman in Jerusalem and that her home was the site of the first house church where Peter went after He was miraculously set free from prison.
3. Acts 12:12 “When this had dawned on him, he went to the house of Mary the mother of John, also called Mark, where many people had gathered and were praying.”
4. It is also believed that the upper room where Jesus celebrated the Passover with his disciples & where they were first filled with the Holy Spirit was in John Mark’s childhood home (Mark 14:14; Acts 2).
B. He was the servant of Paul & Barnabas – Acts 12:25 **Apprentice**
1. John Mark’s 1st recorded venture into missionary work was a failure (Acts 12:25; 13:4). He joined Paul & Barnabas on their 1st trip, but dropped out along the way.
2. Paul & Barnabas would later disagree if John Mark was worth taking another chance on. Paul wasn’t ready to stake the success of any future expeditions on someone as unreliable as John Mark.
3. Barnabas was John Mark’s uncle & was committed to taking his nephew under his wing & developing him into a leader. The disagreement over John Mark erupted into a heated rift & Paul & Barnabas’ friendship was stressed to its limits (Acts 13:13).