Body and Blood of Christ

Mark Iconography

A skilful story-teller, Mark pioneered the Gospel form. He wrote for a community with a Christian tradition who sought more information about Jesus and his teaching. Chapter 13 suggests it was written after the Roman destruction of Jerusalem in the year 70 A.D.

Mark sifts through the oral and written tradition of his time and shapes his own story of Jesus. He chooses the material, and puts it under his pen. Tradition identifies the Mark of the Gospel with John Mark, a cousin of Barnabas. John Mark was a companion of Paul and Barnabas on the first missionary journey and later a companion of Peter and Paul. The tradition suggests that Mark records Peter’s memories. Many of the passages which record events at which Peter was present are the accounts of an eyewitness.

The person of Jesus is at the centre of the Markan story. He presents the Goodnews in terms of the human life of Jesus and of divine intervention in the world. He captures the humanity of Jesus in a series of vivid details.

From the beginning the reader knows who Jesus is, the Son of God, while those people in the story of the Gospel struggle to understand a vulnerable Messiah whose life is characterized by service and suffering. Jesus appears to hide his identity as Son of God until it is revealed after his death. He wins victory through suffering and death. The path of Jesus is the path of the disciple. In an uncompromising way Mark sets the way of the Cross before us and the call to discipleship is a call to the Cross. “If anyone would come after me, let him deny himself and take up his cross and follow me.” (Mark 8:24)

Following a brief introductory section 1:1-13, the Gospel falls easily into two parts. 1:14-8:30 and 8:31-16:8. The first part examines the mystery of Jesus identity which unfolds in a series of miracles and parables. The second focuses on the destiny of Jesus to suffer and die. If Matthew and Luke borrow extensively from Mark, Mark has his own striking way of telling the story of Jesus.

His Gospel records the evidence of witnesses and what a community believed about Jesus.




Quill Pen

Waterfall in Autumn


This is the Story of Jesus drawn from the four Evangelists



Unfolding the Story of Jesus

Gospel passages accompanied by a number of brief commentaries

Story of Jesus