Friday, May 10, 2013

More Thoughts On The Bible | Last Half Of Matthew and All Of Mark

A photo I took last year of our SBS students in lecture 

Alright so Friday is our day to talk about the bible reading from the past week! 

This is going to be short because its 1230am but I wanted to get some stuff written down.  

So this week we finished up the last half of Matthew and all of Mark.  

The last half of Matthew I saw a lot of repeated or similar stories, things seemed familiar.  I don't think I realized that Jesus told these stories more than once, thats one of the reasons why reading through at a faster pace is helpful.  Things like in chapter 17 Matthew includes again a story of God saying "this is my son" which is also done in chapter 4 at Jesus' baptism.  In chapter 18 Matthew includes Jesus' teaching on gouging out your eye if it causes you to lust like in chapter 6.  It's interesting to see which stories Matthew repeats.  

Literary style is also important, Matthew was using a literary style that would have been well known in that time.  When we read it we don't always understand that style of writing.  

I'm sure you know this but it's worth putting here.  The bible wasn't written with chapters and verses originally that was added on later.  

I want to look more into the symbolism of the fig tree.  It seems to be referenced a lot, with a quick word search it looks like it was always used in the OT as a sign of prosperity, like when things were going well.  

Authority is a repeated word in the book of Matthew.  

I think there is some changing of word usage too, this is what I wrote in my notes that I noticed, I might be wrong.  Matt 21:31 uses Kingdom of God instead of the usual Kingdom of Heaven like in the rest of the book, I didn't look it up to see if it was used before this or not.  But this time it jumped out at me.  And then Matt 24:39 Jesus is referred to as the son of MAN and not the son of David like He had been before... again, maybe this was just the first time it jumped out at me and it had been used before.  Probably worth going back and looking up... but its already 1240pm.  

Matt 21 - Jesus rides in on two different animals at once?  What did that look like?  One of our students pointed out the significance of Jesus riding in on a donkey instead of a horse.  A horse was a military symbol in Rome and Jesus was showing that His kingdom was a military take over... but He was making his triumphal entry on a beast of burden.  

In Matt 23 when Jesus started busting out His woes... I felt a little uncomfortable.  Did you get that way?  

Matt 27:46 - "why have you forsaken me?"  this blew my mind when I learned this... because you've probably heard a sermon about this passage about how God is turning His back on Jesus because of the sin... but Jesus is quoting the first line of Psalm 22 and everyone there would have known that He was quoting that passage.  Go read that psalm in light of what is going on.  

K... onto Mark.  

It was fun to read Mark right after Matthew because it seemed like Matthew included all the same stories as Mark so it was nice to get a refresher on some of those stories.  

Mark made Jesus seem like an introvert... and kind of moody.  "Withdrew" was a common word in Mark.  Which I can relate to, I get uncomfortable when I'm around too many people or large crowds.  It also seems like they are hanging out at lakes and on boats for most of it.  I didn't notice that in Matthew.    Three other themes I saw repeated were, Jesus' compassion, suffering and Jesus predicting His death a lot.  The only story Matthew didn't seem to have was Mark 14:51-52 the story of the streaker, haha.  

Alright it's almost 1am.  I'm not even going to proof this.  

I'm really enjoying reading!

Engage:  Are you reading along?  What has stood out to you?  Share your thoughts in the comments!

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