- Almost every sentence of the book starts with "And." Along with a frequent repetition of the word "immediately" this lends a sense of urgency to the entire text.
- The title of the book is "The beginning of the gospel of Jesus Christ, the Son of God." The first words of Jesus are "The time is fulfilled, and the Kingdom of God is at hand; repent, and believe in the gospel." The whole book tells the story of the good news and of the King and his Kingdom, and encourages understanding and acceptance of that message.
- The secret of the Kingdom of God is to ask and seek with a soft/open heart. Throughout the book Jesus is constantly urging everyone to respond to him in that way... with softness of heart, and he's frustrated with those who don't respond or who question with hard hearts.
- There is a play between fear and faith involving two kinds of fear. The first is a sort of amazement that leads to softness of heart and faith. The second is a terror or worry that leads to hardness of heart and unresponsiveness to Christ. Jesus' words to Jairus are a simple summary: "Do not fear, only believe."
Monday, June 1, 2009
lessons from Mark 1-8
As I mentioned previously, I got to study the first eight chapters of the gospel of Mark at Basileia. Here are some of the major themes and interesting notes: