The Gospel of Mark

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Overview

Drawing on many years of Marcan studies, world-class scholar R. T. France has produced an exegetical commentary on the Greek text of Mark that does what the best of recent Greek commentaries have done but in France's own inimitable, reader-friendly way. This work is a commentary on Mark itself, not a commentary on commentaries of Mark. It deals immediately and directly with matters that France himself regards as important. Working from his own translation of the Greek text and culling from helpful research into the world of first-century Palestine, France provides an extensive introduction to Mark's Gospel, followed by insightful section and verse commentary. France sees the structure of Mark's Gospel as an effective "drama in three acts." Act 1 takes up Jesus' public ministry in Galilee. Act 2 covers Jesus' journey to Jerusalem with his disciples. Act 3 focuses on Jesus' public ministry in Jerusalem, including his confrontation with the Jewish leaders, his explanatory discourse on the future, and his passion, death, and resurrection. France carefully unpacks for modern readers the two central themes of this powerful narrative of Jesus' life — the nature of Christ and the role of discipleship. Supported by careful argumentation and impressive in its sensitivity to Mark's structure, context, and use of the Old Testament, France's study of the second Gospel is without peer.

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Product Details

Meet the Author

R. T. France (1938-2012) was Hon. Research Fellow in the Department of Theology and Religious Studies, University of Wales, Bangor. His other books include Jesus and the Old Testament, The Evidence for Jesus, and Matthew: Evangelist and Teacher.

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Table of Contents

Foreword
Abbreviations
Bibliography
About This Commentary 1
About the Gospel of Mark 4
A What Sort of Book? 4
B Mark's Gospel as a 'Drama in Three Acts' 11
C Mark the Storyteller 15
D The Message of Mark 20
E The Origin of the Book 35
F Mark in Relation to Matthew and Luke 41
The Heading (1:1) 49
The Prologue: Setting the Scene - The Dramatis Personae (1:2-13) 54
Act One: Galilee (1:14-8:21) 88
Introduction: The Essential Message of Jesus (1:14-15) 89
The Formation of the 'Jesus Circle' (1:16-20) 94
Preaching and Healing: General Impression (A Day in Capernaum) (1:21-39) 98
Controversial Aspects of Jesus' Ministry (1:40-3:6) 114
Wide Recognition of Jesus' Authority to Heal (3:7-12) 152
Varying Responses to Jesus: Supporters and Opponents (3:13-35) 156
Explanatory Discourse: The Paradox of the Kingdom of God (4:1-34) 181
Further Revelations of Jesus' Unique Authority (4:35-5:43) 219
Not Everyone Is Impressed by Jesus (6:1-6) 241
Jesus' Mission Extended through the Disciples (6:7-30) 245
A Sequence of Miracles around the Lake: Who Is Jesus? (6:31-56) 259
A Foretaste of Confrontation in Jerusalem: The Issue of Purity (7:1-23) 275
The Mission Extended to Neighbouring Peoples (7:24-8:10) 294
Summary So Far: Both Opponents and Supporters Still Have a Lot to Learn (8:11-21) 309
Act Two: On the Way to Jerusalem (Learning about the Cross) (8:22-10:52) 320
First Healing of a Blind Man (8:22-26) 321
Learning to Recognise Jesus (8:27-9:13) 326
Success and Failure in Exorcism (9:14-29) 360
More Lessons about the Way of the Cross (9:30-50) 370
The Revolutionary Values of the Kingdom of God (10:1-31) 385
Following Jesus in the Way of the Cross (10:32-45) 409
Second Healing of a Blind Man (10:45-52) 421
Act Three: Jerusalem (11:1-16:8) 426
Throwing Down the Gauntlet (11:1-25) 427
Confrontation with the Jerusalem Establishment (11:27-13:2) 451
Explanatory Discourse: The End of the Old Order (13:3-35) 497
Setting the Scene for the Passion (14:1-11) 547
Last Hours with the Disciples (14:12-42) 558
The Arrest and Trials of Jesus (14:43-15:15) 590
The Crucifixion, Death, and Burial of Jesus (15:16-47) 635
The Empty Tomb (16:1-8) 670
Indexes 689
Modern Authors 689
Greek Words and Phrases 696
References to Biblical and Other Ancient Sources 699
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