The lion of St Mark

THE GOSPEL OF MARK

Chapter 3: Overview

We have seen already how the first episode of this chapter, 3,1-6, concludes and brings to a climax the sequence of five confrontations between Jesus and the Pharisees and scribes (2,1-3,6). The Pharisees and Herodians are now plotting to destroy Jesus (3,6).

The story though continues from verse 7. Two episodes (3,7-19) come next which we can read together. The first is by the sea (3,7) giving a summary of Jesus' ministry. The second takes place on a mountain (3,13) when Jesus calls the Twelve, an inner group of disciples.

In the second half of verse 19 there is another change of place: Jesus came home. How verses 20-35 form a unit we will see in due course. The theme is set in verse 21 where Jesus' family is introduced.

Chapter 4 then opens a new phase in the story because it begins with the phrase "On another occasion...".

We have therefore three pages for our reading of chapter 3:

3,1-6:the final confrontation
3,7-19:on the sea and up the mountain
3,20-35:the family of Jesus

Let us now move on and read the last story of the series of confrontations, 3,1-6.