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Jan 11, 2015

Mark 1:1-8


What About Mark?


·         He was also known as John Mark. (Acts 12:12, 25)

·         He was Barnabas’ cousin. (Colossians 4:10)

·         He went with Barnabas and Saul/Paul on their first missionary journey for a short period of time and then left them. (Acts 13:4-5)

·         He was in prison with Paul. (Colossians 4:10-11; 2 Timothy 4:11)

·         He was mentored by Peter for several years. (1 Peter 5:13)

o   The early church affirmed that Mark was the one who put into writing Peter’s testimony of Christ.

·         He was primarily writing to the Christians and non-Christians at Rome (Gentiles).


The True Gospel . . .


Mark very succinctly states that the point of his narrative concerning Jesus is the gospel.

·         Gospel:  “euangelion”—declarative announcement of great news that brings much joy.

 There is only one true gospel:  Jesus Christ has come to rescue sinful and broken people from their sin toreconcile us to God.


·         We are rescued so that we might be reconciled. 

The reason this is such great news is because the promised King, who brings salvation, has come.


·         “Jesus”—Hebrew rendering would be Joshua, which means “Yahweh is salvation.”

·         “Christ”—Greek word translated in Hebrew as Messiah which means “Anointed One.”

·         Son of God—the proclamation that Jesus is the deliverer who was promised. 


Messenger of the Gospel . . .

 Just as there was a promised Messiah, there was a promised messenger.


o           John unashamedly proclaimed the need for repentance and forgiveness of sin.

o           John the Baptist was passionate about making much of Jesus, not himself.


In order for the message of the gospel to be elevated and amplified in this world, Christ must increase and I must decrease. (John 1:29-34; 3:22-30)


Questions for Small Group Discussion:


1.    What is important about having all four gospels (Matthew, Mark, Luke and John), telling the same story?

2.    How do you think Mark’s experiences with Barnabas, Paul, and specifically Peter, influenced him in the writing of the gospel of Mark?

3.    Why do you think Mark clearly used the name and title, “Jesus Christ, the Son of God?”  What was he communicating to those who would read this?

4.    How do John and his preaching style compare with current notions of how to gain a following and grow a church? (question from “Exalting Jesus in Mark.”)

5.    Because John had a following, and his own disciples, he could have become jealous of Jesus, yet he didn’t.  Instead of making it about himself, he pointed people to Christ.  What must we do to continually remind ourselves that it’s not about us, but it’s about Christ? 

6.    What are some of the ways you are amplifying the message of Christ to the people you influence, as well as to world around you?

7.    What steps do you need to take to become more passionate and engaged in telling the story of Christ to others?


8.    Write down some names of those with whom you want to begin in sharing the gospel.