The Gospel according to Mark: A Noteworthy Text


Larry Hurtado's Blog

In the ecclesiastical calendar, today (25 April) commemorates St. Mark, the traditional author of the Gospel according to Mark (hereafter GMark).  Whoever its author, GMark is a noteworthy text.  Apparently, the pioneering written narrative account of Jesus’ career, presented in a “bios” type form, it then seems to have prompted the authors of the other canonical Gospels to compose their own accounts.  That these authors did so suggests that they sought to offer different, perhaps superior, accounts.  But, more obviously the case with GMatthew and GLuke, their dependence on GMark suggests also that this text set the crucial precedent for them, and so was regarded as a valuable source.

I think that most scholars estimate that GMark was composed sometime around 70 AD/CE, and that GMatthew and GLuke appeared within a decade or two thereafter, and GJohn late in the same rough time-span.  So there was something of a burst…

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