Composition of the Gospel of Mark


Approximate date: late 50s or early 60s C.E.

Time period: the ministry of John the Immerser to the ascension of Yeshua

Author: John Mark, secretary of the Apostle Peter

Location of author: Rome

Target audience and their location: predominantly Roman, later Alexandrian

Theological Summary: In past theological history, the Gospel of Mark was often thought to have only been a kind of abridgment of the Gospel of Matthew, and so it was not given a huge amount of examination, or even in some cases thought to have that much value. This significantly shifted among theologians in the Twentieth Century, with now the Gospel of Mark believed to contain one of the earliest testimonies to the ministry of Yeshua (Cranfield, IDB), actually having been composed first among the Synoptics. So much attention has been given to Mark in the past half-century, that “the number of written works…over the past forty years [to 1992]…rivals and may well surpass that written on Matthew and Luke combined” (Guelich).

At least ninety percent of the material of Mark is repeated in Matthew, and this is often viewed as evidence regarding how important Mark was to the authors of Matthew and Luke, and the primacy of this text to these other works. In recent years, previous neglection of Mark has now been replaced by a renewed interest in Markan studies. Some specialty translations of the New Testament produced, notably including that by classics scholar Richmond Lattimore, now may place Mark as the first Gospel before Matthew and Luke. A large number of conservative scholars are in agreement that the Gospel of Mark was the first of the four Gospels to have been written, with the authors of Matthew and Luke borrowing extensively from it.

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reproduced from A Survey of the Apostolic Scriptures for the Practical Messianic

As a Messianic Believer, do you have a problem reading the New Testament? When you read the Apostolic Scriptures, are you confused when you encounter the Gospels, Acts, or Epistles? Have you possibly been taught that the “New Testament” replaces the “Old Testament,” and that there are contradictions between the two, only to be reconciled by the coming of Yeshua? Do you have difficulty reconciling the words of the Torah to Yeshua, Peter, Paul, John, and the other Apostles?

If you have ever asked any of these questions, it is time that you receive a re-introduction to the Apostolic Scriptures. These texts record the ministry and teachings of Yeshua the Messiah, the history of the First Century Messianic community, and the challenges that the early Believers in Yeshua faced. These texts are not contrary to the Torah, but do continue God’s progressive story that begins in Genesis. They have valuable lessons that every Messianic Believer and Messianic congregation must learn in this hour, as the Messianic community grows and matures.

A Survey of the Apostolic Scriptures for the Practical Messianic takes you on a journey through the New Testament from a distinct Messianic point of view. The student, in company with his or her study Bible, is asked to read through each text of the Apostolic Scriptures, jotting down characters, place names, key ideas, and reflective questions. Each book of the New Testament is then summarized for its compositional data and asks you questions to get a good Messianic feel for the text. This workbook can be used for both personal and group study, and will be a valuable aid for any Messianic Believer wanting to study the whole Bible on a consistent basis.

220 pages