Epistles of Thomas

September 30, 2008

Mark 13-16

Filed under: New Testament — Thomas @ 0:13

The details of this section have all been read before in Matthew of course but we can look at the parallels and note any differences, which are very apparent in chapter 16. It is interesting to note the footnotes related to Peter’s betrayal of Jesus. The number of times and order of the rooster crowing varies between gospel accounts and those copying out the manuscripts in later centuries sought to reconcile these. That the differences have not been removed demonstrates the fidelity to the originals that was maintained by most scribes.

In 15:7, Barabbas is offered to the crowd. Recall from our discussion on Sunday that bar means “son of” in Aramaic and thus he was the son of Abbas. 15:35 records that some of those standing nearby did not understand Aramaic and thought Jesus was calling Elijah. I wonder why they would know about Elijah if they could not speak Aramaic. God-fearing Gentiles perhaps. Mark’s brevity is very apparent in his account of Jesus’ burial and resurrection. Many of the details we read in Matthew are not present here. Mark’s account ends at 16:8 with the women not saying anything to anyone because of their fear. This abrupt ending resulted in a number of later additions, whether by Mark or someone else we cannot know with certainty. The TNIV and most modern translations include at least vv9-20. This section has unfortunately led some to engage in snake handling and poison drinking as a sign of fidelity to Christ.

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