How to Study Mark (NASB)

Mark is a fast-paced Gospel which emphasizes Jesus' works rather than His teachings. Although Jesus is referred to as a teacher a numbers of times, Mark shows Jesus' power and authority through the works He does as He goes about His Father's business.

In reading this Gospel you will notice the repeated use of the word immediately as Mark takes his reader from one event in the life of Jesus to another. These events and the works of Jesus show the reader Jesus' power and authority as the servant of God and man.

Chapter 1 -13.

Read through all of the instructions below before you begin working on chapters 1 - 13

    1. Although the emphasis in the Gospel of Mark is on the works of Jesus that show His divine power, Mark opens his Gospel by declaring the deity of Jesus Christ. He also gives an account of the events that took place prior to and in preparation for Jesus' ministry. Read Mark 1:1-13 and list in your notebook the following:

a.) The facts that declare the deity of Jesus Christ.

b) The events that took place in Jesus' life prior to His public ministry

    1. Now read Mark chapter by chapter, and in distinctive way mark in the text the key words: immediately, authority (power), kingdom of God, mark every reference to the devil or demons, covenant, Spirit, Christ (Messiah), disciples (s). (NASB).

a) Record these key words on a index card and use it as a bookmark while you study this Gospel. Mark reference to time with a green clock so they're distinctive.

b) Double-underline in green each geographical location, whether it is a city, a region, or a place, such as the temple or the synagogue. Noting these will help in your overall understanding of the events in Jess's live.

3. Chapter 1-3 cover events (including healing and miracles) that demonstrate Jesus' authority.

a) As you look at each event, observe how it demonstrates Jesus' authority, how the people respond, and what Jesus has authority over.

b) Record your insights in your notebook by listing the event, then under that event noting how the people, religious leaders, disciples, and others responded. For example:

Healing on Sabbath

Pharisees counsel to destroy Him

c.) After you have recorded these demonstrations and responses, be sure to record the scope of Jesus' authority. For example, next to the illustration above, you might write, "Authority over Sabbath." Look at His works. Watch for Jesus' power over nature, demons, disease, and so on. Ask God to show you how this demonstration of Jesus' power declares His deity. Also, notice how these events portray Jesus as a Servant.

d) Throughout these chapter, Jesus faces the accusations and rejection of the Jewish religious leaders of his day. Each time the scribes, Pharisees, or Sadducees accuse Jesus, He reasons with them. Mark that conflict in the margin with a star.

4. Record in your notebook the main points of Jesus' teaching. whether the teaching comes as a result of healing, casting out demons, working a miracle, or responding to a question from either the disciples or the multitude. Also note the response of those who hear the teaching.

5. Look at every reference to the kingdom of God you marked and to the following:

a) Note when Jesus increases His emphasis on the kingdom of God.

b) Underline every prediction of Jesus' death and resurrection and note how it coincides with Jesus' emphasis on the kingdom of God.

c) Observe that in the first part of Mark , Jesus defines the kingdom of God, and then at chapter 9 the emphasis shifts to how to enter the kingdom.

d) Compile the main teaching from Mark about the kingdom of God in Gospels and the Kingdom of God. Note the chapter and verses as you do this.

6. After you finish reading and marking each chapter, record the theme of that chapter on Structure of Mark.

Chapters 14 - 16

1. When you read Mark's account, record the progression of events during the trial, death, burial and resurrection of Christ in The Arrest, Trial, and Crucifixion of Jesus Christ, and Account of Jesus' Resurrection, and in your notebook. Note the chapter and the verse beside each insight.

a) When you record the circumstances surrounding the resurrection of Jesus Christ, also note any post resurrection appearances recorded in Mark. After you do this for all four Gospels you will have comprehensive notes on everything that took place at this time in our Lord's life.

b) As you do this, remember that because Luke gives the consecutive order of events, it is a plumb line for the other Gospel records.

2) Complete Structure of Mark. Fill in any segment divisions you have seen from studying the book

Key Words in the NIV and KJV

NASB key words


NIV related words

-at once, quickly, without delay, as soon as, just as, shortly

KJV related words

-as soon as, straightway

Key doctrines in Mark

  1. The humanity of Christ - Jesus humbled Himself and became a man in order to reconcile humanity to God (1:41; 3:5; 4:38; 6:34; 8:12; 9:36; 11:12; 13:32; Is 50:6; 53:7; Mic 5:2; Luke 2:4-7; John 1:14; Rom 1:3, 4; 8:3; Phil 2:6-11; Col 2:9; Heb 4:15; 5:7)

  2. Servanthood - Jesus was the perfect example of true servanthood, even unto death (8:34-37; 9:35; 10:43-45; Zech 9:9; Matt 20:28; 21:5; Luke 22:27; John 13:5; 2Cor 8:9; Phil 2:7)


Studies on Mark