Monday, March 12, 2012

Gospel of Mark - The Cliff Notes

Gospel of Mark

Mark copies off Matthew's paper and gives us an abbreviated version of the story of Jesus.
For the millionth time I question the editors of the bible.  Why is this in here?  It's obviously just a cut and paste job.

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  1. Actually most scholars think it is the other way around. Matthew (and Luke) used Mark and a now lost work called 'Q' (from Quelle or sayings because it is a collection of sayings by Jesus) plus each used other sources.

    I suspect that all four gospels are there because by the time the New Testament was canonicalized each had been used for centuries in at least some of the churches that were making decisions (e.g., one gospel might have been more popular in Egypt, another in Anatolia, a third in Italy). Note these were not meant for private reading (few people could read) but were used for public reading in the context of a church service (not in the earliest churches before the gospels were written though telling stories and readings from the Hebrew Bible may have had a place). Even today in traditional churches the gospels are read aloud through the course of a year (to be exact in many churches each of the Synoptic gospels is read over the course of a year and John is scattered throughout the 3 year cycle).

  2. Hey Bruce,

    I encourage you to see "Expelled". It's a documentary by Ben Stein. Many atheists are in it. I think you would like this documentary.

    Also CSI: Jerusalem is coming up to my area, I will pass on my notes regarding what scientific evidence they have that may interest you.

    And finally, there are differences in Mark:
    1. Compared to Matt and Luke, it contains little of the teaching associated with Jesus.
    2. NONE of the part of His birth and Resurrection appear. Meaning Jesus' life on Earth after the tomb.
    3. Marks literary style is more cruder and worried than Matthew.

    4. MARK is based on a religious proclamation based on historical event.

    According to my Harper Collins study Bible, the book of Mark is in the Gospels mainly because of the detail of Jesus' crucifixion.

    And that this book was written around the time of Nero's persecution of Christians around 64. And the Jewish revolt around 67-70.

    I wonder how many writings were burned during this time? If Nero ordered the killings, I'm sure he ordered the burning of documents.

  3. @Tom,
    I can't tell if you're kidding about Expelled. That "documentary" has been universally panned as poorly produced propaganda for the creationist sector. It relies on emotional appeal and only tears down Darwinism while failing to offer any real evidence for ID. If I remember correctly, it starts off with the Soviets building the Berlin wall and throws in several Nazi images to reinforce their 'we're victims of the powerful science cartel" message.
    Pretty lame.
    Check out to get the response from science.

    Thanks for the insight on Mark. I'm finding Luke to be a better read. His is a more interesting version of the story.

  4. Matthew and Luke both worked off of Mark as source material, and it shows, but when you get to John you will find it to be very different. A particular thing to compare among John and the other gospels is the prevalence of parables (or lack of them). If Jesus focused so much of his time on teaching through telling stories, then why don't all the gospels agree on this point?

    And Tom, I encourage you to see "Religulous". It's a documentary by Bill Maher. Many christians are in it. I think you would like this documentary.

  5. @Uni
    I was one of the first to see Religulous. I thought it was great until the final 6 minutes of the movie. But overall...great!!!
    Based on your post to me, I can see you had no idea on where I was going with that.

    George A. Wells, William Ben Smith, Bruno Bauer, Constantin Volney, and Bolingbroke should get you on the idea on where I was going.

    Ummm. If we had real evidence of ID, would you have started this blog? As stated in the documentary by all sides no one has scientific evidence...yet.
    I am going to check out that site though.

  6. @ Bruce
    That site is a joke...that's not science speaking its some nameless author.
    I brought that documentary up since I thought you were a Darwin supporter.

  7. @ Uni

    I have read your question about 10 times and I do not understand when you say "agree on this point?" Did you mean Parables being the point?
    Are you expecting the four Gospels to match word for word because that's not why the Canon agreed to put them in.
    A thousand apologies to you, Just can't get your whole question.

    And I forgot John M. Robertson, silly me.

  8. Tom,

    My point is that in Mark (and therefore Matthew and Luke also) Jesus spends a huge amount of time delivering his teaching via parables. Those books are full of them. Then you look at John, and there's maybe one, I think. If the other three were correct about the teaching style of Jesus, then how could John miss that? It's like discussing Sesame Street without ever mentioning the Muppets. Big inconsistencies like this are among the many indications that these books were not written by anybody who actually knew Jesus. (If there actually was such a person.)

    And your encouragement to see "Expelled" is a dead giveaway. I've never heard anyone recommend it who wasn't an evangelical biblical literalist. I don't recognize any of the names you have dropped, and considering that you think "Expelled" is a good film, that's probably just as well.

  9. @Tom,
    -Why is the site "a joke"? It points out the errors and the dishonesty of the film.
    -I would have started this site even if I believed a god existed because I wanted to read the Bible!
    -You said, "As stated in the documentary by all sides no one has scientific evidence...yet." There is tons of evidence for evolution. The producers of Expelled cut and twisted the words of pro-evolution experts to shore up their flimsy premise.

    @Uni, I don't believe being a evangelical biblical literalist is the prerequisite for buying into Expelled. I know that Tom is not one. I believe the issue is being properly educated in science and critical thought. Something most of America is sorely lacking.
    If you aren't familiar with biology or the work of Darwin, I can see how you'd buy into this manipulative and dishonest movie.

    Ben Stien's mocking tone and statements made me cringe repeatedly. When one of the scientists explains that life could have started on a crystal or be seeded from space, Stein mocks the idea, yet finds it completely reasonable that a god may have snapped his fingers and created a universe!

  10. I can't find anything right now but I believe that two of the evolution scientists, PZ Myers and Richard Dawkins, asked the production company to release their entire interviews so the public could see what they actually said, in context to the questions asked. The producers haven't responded. Their silence speaks volumes.

    On a lighter note, everyone should read about the goings on at a showing of Expelled in Minnesota. The filmmakers incompetence at weeding out the undesirables is hysterical!

  11. Perhaps Tom isn't a literalist, but that would make him the first person I have run into that pushed that movie that wasn't. My Fundie brother-in-law tried to give us a copy for xmas one year. That was the first xmas present I've ever given back.

    The production company that made "Expelled" went under recently and all their assets were sold for some fairly small amount. I don't remember if the buyer was planning to release the film of entire interviews.

    I happened to be reading Pharyngula the night PZ liveblogged the happenings at that showing in MN, and about fell out of my chair laughing!

  12. Uni,

    Those names are important atheists. You should know those names.

    I am studying the different styles of atheists since the mid 2nd century. All in books and textbooks, no internet.
    Once Darwin hit the mainstream, y'all took another form in the debate on Jesus.

  13. Of ID Bruce.

    Did Darwin ever explain how the first cell was formed?

  14. No Tom, Darwin did not. It wasn't his intention to. He was studying evolution, not creation. Like Isaac Newton and physics, Darwin laid the ground work in biology for future scientist to study and refine.

    Question, do you believe in evolution and accept the work of Darwin? The Vatican seems ok with it/him so can I assume you are also?

  15. Uni,
    Where did I say Expelled was a good film?

  16. @ Bruce
    Do you read all my posts?
    I wrote that Adam and Eve is a parable.
    So how else did the first human come into existence? Just like I believe we have non-Earth relatives.
    And the Vatican agrees with that theory, great article here:

    Your boy Dawkins, I'm a little surprised that he is a 6.9, in Expelled, he admitted 99 out of 100. You would think Dawkins would say 100 out of 100.

  17. @Tom
    You encouraged me/us to see Expelled, therefore we assumed you like/agree with it.