What’s the Gospel of Mark About?
One of the earliest official accounts of the life, death, and resurrection of Jesus. Mark addresses the basic questions of whether Jesus was the true Messiah for whom Israel had been waiting. And if so, what kind of messianic king was he if he suffered and died? At the beginning of Mark’s account, he writes that Jesus is “the Messiah, the Son of God.” Then he designs the rest of the book to help readers understand Jesus as the messianic King by showing the amazing things Jesus said and did, as well as how people responded to him. Some reject Jesus’ true identity, others doubt, and some believe he is who he says he is.
• Watch this 2015 overview video by BibleProject on Mark’s gospel (9.5 min.): narrated by Timothy Mackie and Jonathan Collins.
Jesus was not the king the people were expecting. Mark’s account doesn’t shy away from the unexpected nature of Jesus’ arrival on Earth, but he also makes clear that Jesus is who he says he is: the Jewish Messiah and the son of God. Many of the Jewish people hoped that the Messiah would come to overthrow the Romans and rule as king, but that wasn’t what Jesus did. He came to serve and to usher in God’s kingdom on Earth. And he didn’t come in royal authority and power — he came to humbly sacrifice his life in order to save his people.
Who Is Jesus? Mark’s gospel is a carefully crafted story that asks the reader: Is Jesus the Jewish Messiah? Mark includes specific details and story to show Jesus’ messianic authority and identity as God’s son. He’s making a case for who Jesus is, and he leaves the answer up to the reader to ponder. What will you choose to believe?