January 12, 2021
“The beginning of the good news of Jesus Christ, the Son of God.” – Mark 1:1
This is not a headline nor a subtitle. It is a proclamation that the stories about to be related are about THE savior, God’s own son.
Biblical scholars tell us Mark was writing for Christian believers living in Rome, the epicenter of an empire that recognized the emperor as a god. It was good news indeed to be assured that this Jesus for whom they were risking their lives was truly God, not another human invention.
“I am going to start with the main point,” Mark seems to be thinking as he picks up his writing instrument, “The beginning of the good news of Jesus Christ, the Son of God.”
Scholars also tell us that Mark likely got his info from Peter’s preaching. Peter, who as a disciple sometimes blurted out wild guesses, got one big thing right. When Jesus asked him, “Who do you say I am?” Peter proclaimed, “You are the Messiah.” (Mark 8:29)
All of which begs the question for each of us: Who do YOU say Jesus is?
Is he past or present? Is he sage or savior? Are his humanity and his deity both relevant? If the government tried to push God away and persecute you for worshipping Jesus, would you cave or proclaim him as your King? Does the altar you prepared in your Advent heart still have a sweet baby from a manger snuggled in it, or did it bounce him out when he grew up and started explaining what the Kingdom of God was all about? Do you believe Jesus’ assurance that you are beloved as God’s own child even if your faith struggles with these questions?
May God bless our struggling, our seeking, and our proclaiming: This is good news about Jesus Christ, the Son of God!
This blog is part of a series for the Good Book Club. Learn more about the Good Book Club here.