Introduction to the Gospel of Mark-Part III
There are a number of major themes in Mark that we can discuss in an introductory setting. The first one to appear on the text is the theme of Jesus as “Son of God” (1:1) that in a way it can be said to bracket the whole Gospel with the centurion’s recognition “Truly this man was the Son of God” (15:39). In the opinion of some commentators, this title is due to Jesus’ nature and denotes his equality with the Father (Easton Bible Dictionary), while others allude to the fact that the title is assigned to a variety of figures to offer a more cautious understanding of the title, at least in a scholarly reading of the Gospel of Mark. The Church offers as one of the guides in the understanding of the Scriptures an attention to the content and unity of the whole of Scriptures (Dei Verbum 12). For that reason, the faithful are justified in reading “Son of God” as a christological title denoting his divine reason by reading the Mark passages along with other passages where the title is used, specially in the Gospel of John (Jn 5:18 among many others), and St. Paul’s usage (See Rom 1:1-4). Understood this way, the title “Son of God” as it appears in the Gospel of Mark is of great importance. The way it brackets the text can be understood to mean that the whole text will be an unfolding of the understanding of the title, an understanding that we can only fully comprehend starting with a proclamation of the good news and through the passion and ultimate resurrection of Jesus.