Reading Mark – Questions to Consider
1.How would you describe the character of Jesus in Mark’s gospel? What about the character of the disciples? Jesus’ family? What is the relationship between Jesus and the disciples, and his family?
2.What evidence is there in Mark that would indicate that the Messiah is a human, suffering figure? What evidence is there that the Messiah is a strong, heavenly figure?
3.Are the Romans depicted sympathetically in Mark? What about the Jews? What was the historical context of the creation of Mark that might explain these characterizations?
4.Review the narrative in which Jesus dies: Mark 15:16-41. Note that it is Roman soldiers who torture, mock, and execute Jesus. Now read the narratives of Jesus’ death in the other gospels: Matthew 27:27-55; Luke 23:26-44; and John 19:16b-37. How are these accounts similar? How are they different? What do these differences say about the theological views of the authors?
5.Whom do you think Mark was writing for? Who was his audience? Whom do you think his readers might identify with?