The Gospel of Mark tells a whirlwind story about the coming Kingdom of God and the role that Jesus of Nazareth is playing in its coming. The book has played (and continues to play) an important role in shaping the church’s understanding of Jesus and of discipleship. This course is primarily an exegetical study of the Gospel of Mark. It will examine the book’s historical, literary, and theological qualities, and will situate these within relevant first-century contexts. It will also involve a sustained discussion of how the message of Mark’s Gospel can be heard, considered, and integrated into the life of the church today.
- Remember the story told in the Gospel of Mark;
- Become familiar with introductory issues and scholarly debates concerning the Gospel of Mark;
- Understand the major theological themes of the Gospel of Mark;
- Appreciate the importance of participating in respectful discussions about biblical texts;
- Become self-aware as a modern reader of the Bible, recognizing both the antiquity of the texts and the various ways in which contemporary life influences our understanding of it;
- Embody the life of discipleship that is so central to the Gospel of Mark;
- Have the ability to quickly locate reliable scholarly resources that discuss a particular NT book or passage;
- Have the ability to ask key questions in order to explore the meaning of a NT book or passage;
- Have the ability to reflect canonically, theologically, and contextually so as to explore how people can/should understand the New Testament today.