May 2020


After receiving a recent review of our book Reading Mark in Context: Jesus and Second Temple Judaism, we wanted to make the table of contents more accessible. We are quite pleased with the significant line-up of excellent Gospels scholars.

Foreword: N. T. Wright

  1. Rule of the Community and Mark 1:1–13: Preparing the Way in the Wilderness (Rikk Watts)
  1. The Parables of Enoch and Mark 1:14–2:12: The Authoritative Son of Man (Kristian A. Bendoraitis)
  1. Josephus and Mark 2:13–3:6: Controversies with the Scribes and Pharisees (Mary Marshall)
  1. The Testaments of the Twelve Patriarchs and Mark 3:7–35: Apocalyptic and the Kingdom (Elizabeth E. Shively)
  1. 4 Ezra and Mark 4:1–34: Parables on Seeds, Sowing, and Fruit (Klyne Snodgrass)
  1. The Testament of Solomon and Mark 5:1–20: Exorcism and Power over Evil Spirits (Michael F. Bird)
  1. Mishnah Zabim and Mark 5:21–6:6a: The Rules on Purity (David E. Garland)
  1. Josephus and Mark 6:6b–29: Herod Antipas’s Execution of John the Baptist (Morten Hørning Jensen)
  1. 4QConsolations and Mark 6:30–56: Images of a New Exodus (Holly Beers)
  1. The Letter of Aristeas and Mark 7:1–23: Developing Ideas of Defilement (Sarah Whittle)
  1. Jubilees and Mark 7:24–37: Crossing Ethnic Boundaries (Kelly R. Iverson)
  1. The Damascus Document and Mark 8:1–26: Blindness and Sight on “the Way” (Suzanne Watts Henderson)
  1. Sirach and Mark 8:27–9:13: Elijah and the Eschaton (Sigurd Grindheim)
  1. Tobit and Mark 9:14–29: Imperfect Faith (Jeanette Hagen Pifer)
  1. Rule of the Community and Mark 9:30–50: Discipleship Reordered (Jeffrey W. Aernie)
  1. Mishnah Giṭṭin and Mark 10:1–12: Marriage and Divorce (David Instone-Brewer)
  1. Eschatological Admonition and Mark 10:13–31: Riches, Poverty, and the Faithful (Mark D. Mathews)
  1. Rule of the Congregation and Mark 10:32–52: Glory and Greatness in Eschatological Israel (John K. Goodrich)
  1. 1 Maccabees and Mark 11:1–11: A Subversive Entry into Jerusalem (Timothy Gombis)
  1. Psalms of Solomon and Mark 11:12–25: The Great Priestly Showdown at the Temple (Nicholas Perrin)
  1. The Animal Apocalypse and Mark 11:27–12:12: The Rejection of the Prophets and the Destruction of the Temple (David L. Turner)
  1. Josephus and Mark 12:13–27: The Sadducees, Resurrection, and the Law (Jason Maston)
  1. Psalms of Solomon and Mark 12:28–44: The Messiah’s Surprising Identity and Role (Mark L. Strauss)
  1. The Parables of Enoch and Mark 13:1–37: Apocalyptic Eschatology and the Coming Son of Man (Jonathan T. Pennington)
  1. Mishnah Pesaḥim and Mark 14:1–25: The Passover Tradition (Amy Peeler)
  1. The Babylonian Talmud and Mark 14:26–52: Abba, Father! (Nijay K. Gupta)
  1. The Parables of Enoch and Mark 14:53–73: Blasphemy and Exaltation (Darrell L. Bock)
  1. Philo of Alexandria and Mark 15:1–15a: Pontius Pilate, a Spineless Governor? (Helen K. Bond)
  1. 11QTemplea and Mark 15:15b–47: Burying the Crucified (Craig A. Evans)
  1. 2 Maccabees and Mark 16:1–8: Resurrection as Hope for the Present (Ben C. Blackwell)

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Simon J. Joseph (University of California, Los Angeles) has reviewed our Reading Mark in Context: Jesus and Second Temple Judaism in the Review of Biblical Literature.  He has some fair notes about the volume and ends his review thus:

Relocating the Gospel of Mark in its wider Jewish context, the essays in Reading Mark in Context introduce readers to the study of Mark within the literary, historical, and theological contexts that it both drew from and distinguished itself from. Although many of the essays reinscribe Mark’s promise/fulfillment paradigm (in which Jesus fulfills Jewish messianic prophecies), that is to be expected given the authorial Tendenz of the Markan narrative . The goal of this volume was not to distinguish between the Markan Jesus, a historical Jesus, and the Jesus of history but to illuminate the literary world of the Markan narrative. The editors and authors are to be commended for this collection of well-written and accessible essays, each of which illuminates the Markan context without unnecessarily complicating its discussion with questions of literary dependence. Readers will appreciate the introduction outlining the volume’s methodological approach and structure, along with its brief overview of Second Temple literature and a helpful glossary of key terms. I strongly recommend these essays for “beginning and intermediate students” of the gospels, not simply because they successfully contextualize the Markan texts in their wider literary contexts, but more so because they drive home the important message that a contextual reading of Mark requires attending to the creative complexity of its relationship with(in) Second Temple Judaism.