The Composition of Mark's Gospel: Selected Studies from Novum Testamentum

The Composition of Mark's Gospel: Selected Studies from Novum Testamentum

The Composition of Mark's Gospel: Selected Studies from Novum Testamentum

The Composition of Mark's Gospel: Selected Studies from Novum Testamentum


Though some scholars continue to vote to the contrary, it is generally held that Mark was the inventor of the Gospel genre, and his work thus the earliest of the New Testament Gospels and a model for the other evangelists. The articles in this collection, drawn from four decades of publication of the best international scholarship in Novum Testamentum, document the discussion on the literary methods, style and theological purpose of the innovative early Christian writer. From the earliest attempts at redaction criticism, in which Mark's work is viewed primarily in his treatment of his sources, the collection traces the discussion as far as recent attempts to read Mark as a creative composer: story-teller, theologian and playwright.


This is the third in a series of publications designed to make previously published journal material available in a more convenient and accessible form. The material presented in this series, then, though it certainly contains some previously neglected but valuable studies alongside established “classic” essays (with which this collection is replete), does not claim to be more than a convenient selection. However, convenience can easily translate into usefulness and indeed use, and many university and seminary teachers will find the selections suitable not only for their personal use, but also for their classes.

The present selection has been made from the best and most useful articles on the literary work of the inventor of the Gospel genre, Mark, to have appeared to date in the journal, Novum Testamentum. The seminal—according to Norman Perrin, the “brilliant”—essay on “The Composition of Mark 7.27-9.1 par.” by Ernst Haenchen has been included here in the original German. It is the hope of editor and publishers that this will not prove too demanding on the users of this volume. It sets the tone for the discussion of Mark's literary activity in this collection, and provides a springboard for the discussion of Markan composition in the subsequent essays.

The individual essays, which are listed in chronological order of original publication, speak for themselves, and are offered without editorial comment, in conformity with the ethos of the journal. Taken as a whole, the collection illustrates and documents the development of international scholarly discussion on Mark's literary and theological contribution from the first tentative days of redaction criticism.

Readers of German are referred also to the article by Hans-Josef Klauck, “Die erzählerische Rolle der Jünger im Markusevangelium” (NovT 24 [1982]: 1-26), which could not be included in this collection.


Leiden, 1999 . . .

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