An Essay for Humanities Courses
The Bible


Mark and the other evangelists used basically five ways to change, edit or enhance
Jesus\' sayings to reflect their own views of Christianity. According to the Five Gospels
Book, plagiarism and changing of writing was not a crime, but actually very common Mark\'s
time. Besides, Mark never knew Jesus first-hand, he somehow had to make a \'story\' from
basically Hearsay!
Mark groups different parables and sayings of Jesus by topic; making a false
impression that these things happened in order. This may have little effect on changing the
meaning of the lesson, however it illustrates the fact that Mark was trying to author a
"readable" story for people, rather than a book of facts. The best example would be in
Mark 10:17-31 (Jesus Counsel to the Rich) & (Parable of The Camel and the Eye of a
Needle). It is doubtful that these things happened at the same time; however, they are
GREY in The Five Gospels anyway ... and probably didn\'t happen as Mark describes. This
brings us to Mark\'s writing style.
Mark seems to "tack-on" sentences to Jesus\' teachings to make them more
"Christian." This really changes the meaning more than any other tactic! Who knows what
Mark may have edited-out to accomplish what he wanted to impress upon his readers? In
this, he tries to interpret the meaning of Jesus\' actions ... and does this in a misleading way!
For example: Mark 2:19, Jesus regarding Fasting. Jesus makes a strong statement against
importance to fasting, but Mark (in 2:20) tags on:

"But the days will come when the bridegroom will be taken away from them,
and they will fast in those days."
This blatantly shows that Mark held higher regard for the Old Traditions of Fasting
rather than Jesus\' new teachings! This is also an example of "Christianizing Jesus" according
to traditions that have already earned respect from Jews in their tradition. (Wow, this is
starting to sound like a fight between Today\'s Political Parties, isn\'t it?! [Jesus = Liberal
Politics / Judaism = Conservative Politics]).
Finally, Mark likes to "soften the blow" of Jesus\' Hard sayings. He does this for
probably the same reason Paul preached that Circumcision was not required for Christians.
A good example is The Unforgivable Sin (Mark 3:28-). Jesus clearly states that words
against the Holy Spirit are unforgivable. However, Mark adds that "all things are possible
with God," which softens this harsh rule!


Mark lived during the Jewish War of 66-70 ADE. Unlike the later evangelists,
Matthew and Luke, Mark believed the Parousia was upon us, about to happen at any time!
And, for obvious reason: he lived in an extremely troubled time for the Jews, and he had
not been worried yet by the Parousia\'s delay as were later evangelists.
Mark 13:4 - \'Tell us, when will these things be? And what will be the sign when all
these things will be fulfilled?\' According to Mark\'s writing, Jesus first predicts the
destruction of the Temple. However, Mark had written after the destruction of the Temple
in 70 ADE! This tactic agrees with The Five Gospels: writing apocalyptic sayings of Jesus
after they have already been "fulfilled." I would suppose he did this to give credit to his
writing of the second coming of God.
An example is the parable of The Fig Tree in Mark 13:28-37. This addition,
obviously written by Mark and not said by Jesus, shows the urgency in which Mark expected
the parousia:

"Assuredly, I say to you, this generation will by no means pass away till all these
things take place."
You can easily see why the other evangelists, Matthew, Luke & John, re-wrote
Mark\'s apocalyptic writing to be more of a "Sacred Time," and less definite.
Mark used a common tactic of quoting scripture (especially Dan, Isa, Mic & some
Psalms) for his apocalyptic writing. We also saw this in Paul\'s letters years before. People
regarded scripture as fact, therefore a perfect tool to give credit to Mark\'s & Paul\'s new
Our own culture today is wrapped-up in tradition and Bible quotes as undisputable
fact, even though people twist