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Products>Mark as Story: An Introduction to the Narrative of a Gospel, 3rd ed.

Mark as Story: An Introduction to the Narrative of a Gospel, 3rd ed.

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In this third edition of Mark as Story, David Rhoads, Joanna Dewey, and Donald Michie take their treatment of the Gospel of Mark to new levels. While retaining their clear and thorough analysis of Mark as a narrative, they now place their study of Mark in the context of orality. The new preface explains the role of Mark in a predominantly oral culture. Throughout the study, they refer to the author as composer, the narrator as performer, the Gospel as oral composition, and the audience as gathered communities. The conclusion hypothesizes a performance scenario of Mark in Palestine shortly after the Roman-Judean War of 66 to 70 CE.

The new edition also highlights the dimensions of Mark that stand in contrast to imperial worldviews and values. The authors argue that the performance of Mark itself was a means to draw audiences into a non-imperial world based on mutual service rather than hierarchical domination. In so doing, they shift the Gospel’s center of gravity from the end of the story to the beginning, configuring it not as “a passion narrative with an extended introduction” but as “the arrival of the rule of God with an extended denouement.”

The appendices for students at the end of the book offer exercises to interpret the narrative of Mark now also include “Exercises for Learning and Telling Episodes” from the Gospel of Mark by heart as part of the learning process.

In the Logos edition, this volume is enhanced by amazing functionality. Important terms link to dictionaries, encyclopedias, and a wealth of other resources in your digital library. Perform powerful searches to find exactly what you’re looking for. Take the discussion with you using tablet and mobile apps. With Logos Bible Software, the most efficient and comprehensive research tools are in one place, so you get the most out of your study.

Save more when you purchase this book as part of the Fortress Press Studies in Mark collection.

Resource Experts
  • Places the study of Mark in the context of orality
  • Studies the Gospel of Mark as narrative
  • Analyzes the historical and cultural contexts surrounding Mark’s composition
  • The Gospel of Mark
  • The Narrator
  • The Settings
  • The Plot
  • The Characters I: Jesus
  • The Characters II: The Authorities, the Disciples, and the Minor Characters

Top Highlights

“Fourth, avoid reading modern theologies about Jesus back into Mark’s story.” (Page 6)

“Mark composed his Gospel, in large part, in order to give people courage to live for the rule of God despite opposition and threat.” (Page 2)

“so also Jesus and the rule of God are portrayed in Mark as an alternative to the Roman emperor and the Roman Empire.” (Page xiv)

“Mark’s story is unified around one overall theme: God is establishing God’s rulership over the ‘creation that God created’ and bringing it to fulfillment within the generation.” (Page 73)

“Finally, the fifth element of narrative is rhetoric, which refers to the various ways an author or composer may use the combined features of narrative to persuade readers and hearers to enter and embrace the world presented by the narrative. As such, it is not enough to ask what a narrative means. We must also ask what a narrative does to change its audiences. A study of the rhetoric of Mark identifies how the narrative may transform its audiences.” (Page 7)

The Gospel of Mark is, by all accounts, one of the most important books ever written. And Mark as Story, better than any volume known to me, reveals the meaning of the Gospel of Mark in a way that comes pretty close to what most people, most of the time, mean when they talk about the meaning of a story. This third edition [invites us] to imagine the story being performed and heard within a particular social-cultural context and to imagine the nuances the story would acquire within that setting.

—From the Afterword, Mark Allan Powell, Robert and Phyllis Leatherman Professor of New Testament, Trinity Lutheran Seminary

David Rhoads is emeritus professor of New Testament at Lutheran School of Theology in Chicago and the author of The Challenge of Diversity: The Witness of Paul and the Gospels and Reading Mark: Engaging the Gospel. He is the editor of From Every People and Nation: The Book of Revelation in Intercultural Perspective and coeditor of The Season of Creation: A Preaching Commentary.


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    Digital list price: $18.99
    Save $4.00 (21%)