These are all of the chapters of the book of Mark. Clicking on a chapter will show you the text of that chapter of Mark in the Bible (New International Version).
This book was written by John Mark, who many believe was directly mentored by Peter for his gospel knowledge. We read in 1 Peter 5:13, “...and so does my son, Mark.” This John Mark is thought to be related to Barnabas and resided in Jerusalem per 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.”
At some point during the work of Mark, Mark left Barnabas and Paul’s missionary team. This reportedly caused a disagreement between Paul and Mark despite Barnabas trying to reconnect the group per Acts 15:36-38. Barnabas ended up disagreeing with Paul and taking Mark to Cyprus to continue their work sharing the gospel. It is inspiring to ready in 2 Timothy 4:11 that Paul ultimately gave mercy to Mark saying that “he is a tremendous help for me in my ministry.”
Mark is thought to be written between 50 and 55 A.D. for Roman Christians. The Gospels are intended for the Church as a whole, but since Mark used Roman words in place of Greek from an Aramaic translation, it is believed Christians in Rome were the main audience for his work.
As one of the Gospel books, Mark aims to share the life story and purpose of Jesus Christ as our Lord and savior. He takes a special direction of introducing Jesus as the one with a mission of love and the power to change the world. While other gospels document more parables, Mark shares 21 miracles, 2 of which are unique to his account. Adding onto the above comment about Mark being given mercy from Paul, Mark’s account captures the miracles and mercy of God through Jesus.
Mark has a two-fold purpose to his writing through several themes we will discuss in a moment. 1. He aims to confirm Jesus’ messianic identity and 2. He calls believers to follow in Jesus’ footsteps and character. Per the introduction of The Passion Translation Bible, several main themes support this purpose. First, he sets the stage for the character of Jesus to be absorbed and welcomed by sharing a prophetic word from Isaiah. This leads into his second theme, which is to unfold the mission of Jesus as Messiah. Throughout Mark, we read Jesus asked that his identity be kept secret so that the power of God’s work would be its brightest. He then shares the work of Jesus through the eyes of miracles and mercy. As the Gospel ends, you see a theme of discipleship and faith, and as with all the other Gospels, you also see the “kingdom” realm of God.
As we go through our day to day lives, “church” can feel far from us. We get more invested in our problems and limitations due to our inability to solve for those problems. As a result, we get further from the mindset of hope and faith. It makes sense, we spend so much time in that space, but Mark provides a refreshing word as he reminds us of the miracles that God can carry out. He reminds us that those miracles were carried out by Jesus and of the work that is already done, but he also reminds us of the miracles that Jesus said we can also bring to reality through our faith.
Aside from the miracles, we can explore the relationship of Mark and Paul. While the details of Mark’s departure are not certainly clear, we can gather that there were some mistakes made as the needs of Mark became greater than his mission. Can’t we all relate to that? We can only hope that we have had people in our lives extend the same mercy that Paul did as it is those people that point us back to the love of God, the love that changes hearts and lives. It is through Jesus love that we can love, through his mercy that we can extend the same, and through his power that we are strengthened. Mark reminds us of that.
Mark 7:21-23 - “For it is from within, out of a person’s heart, that even thoughts come-sexual immorality, theft, murder, adultery, greed, malice, deceit, lewdness, envy, slander, arrogance and folly. All these evils from inside and defile a person.” (On whether eating certain things or looking a certain way are what defile a person.)
Mark 7:31-37 - This account of Jesus healing a deaf man is one of the two unique miracles only documented in the book of Mark. My favorite part of this story is how Jesus led the deaf man away from the crowd to a quiet place. How beneficial would it be in your life if you came away from the noise of familiarity and limitation and got connected with faith?
Mark 8:22-26 - This account of Jesus healing a blind man is the second unique miracle to the book of Mark. Note how both of these miracles run with Mark’s theme of faith and mercy.
Mark 10:9 - “Therefore what God has joined together, let no one separate.”
Mark 11:24-25 - “Therefore I tell you, whatever you ask for in prayer, believe that you have received it, and it will be yours. And when you stand praying, if you hold anything against anyone, forgive them, so that your Father in heaven may forgive you of your sins.”
Mark 12:38 - “Jesus also taught the people, ‘Beware of the religious scholars. They love to parade around in their clergy robes and be greeted with respect on the street…They push their way to the head table at banquets…Beware of them all, for they will one day be stripped of honor, and the judgment they receive will be severe.’”
Mark 12:44 - “The rich only gave out of their surplus, but she sacrificed out of her poverty and gave to God all that she had to live on, which was everything she had.”
Mark 15:38 - “At that moment the veil in the Holy of Holies was torn in two from the top to the bottom. (Hebrews 10:19-22 describes the result and meaning of this veil tearing. The veil over covering the holy of holies was thick, heavy, and nearly 80 feet tall.)
Mark 16:15 - “As you go into all the world, preach openly the wonderful news of the gospel to the entire human race!”
The Passion Translation Bible, second edition
Photo credit: ©Sparrowstock
Kyle Blevins has been a contributor to Crosswalk, BibleStudyTools, Christianity.com, as well as local faith magazines in the Chattanooga, TN area. He is a husband and boy dad of three who enjoys learning, playing, and leading. You can follow his writing aimed toward encouraging dads and supporting families at landofthedad.com or connect by searching Land of the Dad on social media.