Tag: discipleship

Summary: Paying attention to at least five aspects of the Gospel according to Mark will allow preachers to show congregations this Gospel’s perspective on the world and the impact of Jesus’ life and ministry. Mark describes good news of incursion, deliverance, and mercy. Jesus brings God’s reign (kingdom) into being as he breaches and redefines presumed boundaries. He eludes easy definition. Mark nevertheless directs attention to outsiders who possess keen insights into Jesus. The Messiah’s rejection and death provide the model of discipleship.

Read the full article, the second of two, at Working Preacher.

Bible commentary: preachers & teachers workingpreacher.org commentary

Summary: The Gospel according to Mark depicts Jesus’ arrival, teaching, and actions as an incursion, as God’s effort to enter the world and defeat hostile foes for the sake of inaugurating God’s reign (kingdom). Mark depicts a Jesus who eludes ordinary means of perception; the Messiah defies conventional expectations. Those who preach from Mark do well to imitate the Gospel’s apocalyptic tenor by seeing their task as making visible the inscrutable activity of God.

Read the full article, the first of two, at Working Preacher.

Bible commentary: preachers & teachers workingpreacher.org commentary

Summary: In this biblical passage, when Jesus and his disciples talk about who people think he really is, Jesus begins to describe what it means to follow him. The instructions he gives, to deny oneself and take up a cross, are not easy.

I wrote this biblical commentary for those preparing to preach or teach on the passage. Read the commentary at Working Preacher.

Bible commentary: preachers & teachers workingpreacher.org commentary

Summary: This article is more academic than most of the other things I’ve written that are accessible on the Web. It explores Jesus’ words in Mark 8:34: “If any want to become my followers, let them deny themselves and take up their cross and follow me.” The self-denial Jesus calls for isn’t about self-improvement. It’s to embrace a new identity that makes a public declaration of our commitment to the enactment of God’s reign.

Read the full article from the journal Word & World. It was originally published in the Summer 2003 issue.

Journal articles