A Strong Start
Our reading this week comes from Mark 1:1-8. Today we focus on the first verse of this passage.

This is the Good News about Jesus the Messiah, the Son of God. 

Mark 1:1

Mark does not mess around. It is one of the reasons I enjoy his Gospel above all others. He is a “get-to-the-point” kind of guy. Chapter one. Verse one. Right off the bat. If you have any questions about why Mark authored this book, he answers them in thirteen quick, power-packed words. Let’s break them down:

  1. Mark tells us that this story is about Jesus. Duh. Obvious, but helpful information.
  2. This story is good news for the reader. In today’s world, people question whether Jesus is a good news guy or not. I don’t blame Jesus as much as I blame the church that repeatedly uses the name of Jesus to justify abuse against entire groups of people. Within the modern church, the name Jesus has become synonymous with power. What if we study the book of Mark without the filter of history, and allow the story to speak to us the way it spoke to the first century reader? What if we understood that apart from the narrative of church history, Jesus brings freedom and not suppression? That would be good news, indeed!
  3. Mark bestows upon Jesus the title of Messiah. Now, this is big! If you are a reader of the Gospel of Luke, you know that the term Messiah means, “God with Us.”
  4. Jesus is the Son of God. Mark declares it. He doesn’t hold back. Jesus has influence and it’s not a bad idea to pay attention to what he says, what he does, how he lives his life, and how he treats others. The Gospel of Mark is going to tell us important things about this man named Jesus. Pay attention!

As we jump into a year of studying the book of Mark together, this verse sets the stage in a way that few others do in the Bible. It’s a wonderful way to begin our journey. Even if we meditate on this one verse for an entire week, we are still in awe!

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