This series looks at the places where Jesus asks a question in the Gospel of Mark. Jesus not only taught through sermons, parables and miracles. He also used questions as a teaching tool, frequently asking a question he already knows the answer to.
Resources: Study Questions, Maps, Outlines & Background
01 Introduction to the Gospel of Mark
Overview of the themes, outline and focus of the Gospel of Mark. Teacher: Krisan Marotta on September 24, 2014.
02 What’s easiest to say? Mark 2:1-12
This passage contains two questions addressed to the Pharisees when the paralyzed man was lowered through his roof. Jesus challenges them, asking whether they serve a Lord who forgives and delights in forgiveness or one who withholds forgiveness? Teacher: Krisan Marotta on October 1, 2014.
03 Good or evil, life or death? Mark 2:23-3:6
Mark 2:23-3:6 contains two stories back-to-back about the sanctity of the Sabbath. In the first story, the Pharisees accuse the disciples of Jesus of breaking the Sabbath. In the second story, Jesus turns the tables on the Pharisees and accuses them of being the real Sabbath breakers. Teacher: Krisan Marotta on October 8, 2014.
04 Why are you so afraid? Mark 4:35-41
Perhaps the most difficult question that skeptics ask is the question of suffering. How can God be all-powerful and all-loving and allow His people to live in tragedy and anguish? The disciples ask “Don’t you care if we drown?” Jesus responds reveals the problem of suffering is ultimately a problem of faith. Teacher: Krisan Marotta on October 15, 2014.
05 What is your name? Mark 5:1-20
This question is addressed to the legion of demons who are tormenting the man in the graveyard, and it is asked in the presence of the disciples. Why would Jesus care about the name? Teacher: Krisan Marotta on October 22, 2014.
06 Who touched me? Mark 5:21-34
This question is addressed to the woman whose period didn’t end for 12 years. She was ritually unclean, isolated, sick and living a life that was going from bad to worse with no hope on the horizon. She touched Jesus in hopes of being healed physically, but Jesus stopped and offered her spiritual healing and a place in the community of believers. Teacher: Krisan Marotta on October 29, 2014.
07 Why do you weep? Mark 5:35-43
As we journey through Mark, the evidence is mounting that Jesus is the Messiah. First, he claimed to have the authority to forgive sins. Then we saw him deal with an overwhelming external storm and an overwhelming internal storm, followed by a debilitating physical illness. With this question, he confronts the final enemy: death. Teacher: Krisan Marotta on November 5, 2014.
08 How many loaves do you have? Mark 6:30-46
The feeding of the 5000 is the only story — other than Jesus’ last week on earth — which is found in all 4 gospels. It is mentioned in several other passages as well. Even though it’s part of a familiar story, this question is one of the more obscure questions that we’ll cover. Teacher: Krisan Marotta on November 12, 2014.
09 Don’t you understand? Mark 7:1-23
Jesus asks this question of his disciples. He highlights a specific area of concern: what makes a person unclean? Teacher: Krisan Marotta on November 19, 2014.
10 Do you see anything? Mark 8:11-26
The passage contains several questions which all revolve around seeing and not seeing, culminating with Jesus asking a blind man if he sees anything. Teacher: Krisan Marotta on November 26, 2014.
11 Who do you say that I am? Mark 8:27-38
This question is the turning point of the story. So far in Mark’s gospel, the primary focus of Jesus’ teaching revealing his authority as the Son of Man and the Servant of God. Having established his identity, Jesus now prepares his disciples for what he came to do. Teacher: Krisan Marotta December 03, 2014.
12 What did Moses command? Mark 10:2-12
The questions we’ll look at in the rest of our series will differ from the previous questions. These questions cover a wider range of topics and the questions focus more on what Jesus came to do and by extension what does it mean to follow him, rather than on who he is. The passage concerns divorce and marriage, and the question that Jesus asks is, “What did Moses command?” Teacher: Krisan Marotta on December 10, 2014.
13 Why do you call me good? Mark 10:17-31
This question comes from the well-known passage about the rich young ruler. The rich man wants to know what he can DO to inherit eternal life. He learns that what he must DO is impossible to do. Teacher: Krisan Marotta on December 17, 2014.
14 What do you want me to do for you? Mark 10:32-45
What do you want Jesus to do for you? Do you want him to make you great? Greatness is not demanding loyalty and service from others. Greatness is serving, to the point of giving your life. Teacher: Krisan Marotta on December 31, 2014.
15 Whose likeness is on this coin? Mark 11:27-12:17
As we’ve seen, Jesus asks questions designed to help people understand themselves and God in a new way. The question “whose likeness is on this coin” often prompts a lecture on paying taxes and financial stewardship. But this passage is more about image and authority than money. Teacher: Krisan Marotta on January 7, 2015.
16 Why do you bother her? Mark 14:1-11
What’s the most expensive thing you own? Maybe it’s not the most expensive in terms of dollars, but maybe it’s something that’s impossible to replace? What would it take to make you part with it? That kind of costly, self-sacrificing love is at the theme of this question. Teacher: Krisan Marotta on January 14, 2015.
17 Couldn’t you stay awake? Mark 14:27-42
Probably one of the most difficult questions Christians are asked is: If God is sovereign, why bother to pray? Why pray, since it won’t change anything? This question gives a really good start on understanding it. Teacher: Krisan Marotta on January 21, 2015.
18 Why have you forsaken me? Mark 15:22-41
After Jesus was captured in the Garden of Gethsemane, the soldiers led him to the high priest. Mark is very careful to point out that these two situations — the trial before the Sanhedrin and the denial of Peter — occur side by side. The contrast between these two situations gives us an illustration which is the answer to the question Jesus asks on the cross. Teacher: Krisan Marotta on January 28, 2015.
I offer my bible studies, podcasts and resources free of charge under the Creative Commons Attribution-NonCommercial-ShareAlike 4.0 Unported License. I do not seek or accept advertising, affiliations or donations. But it does encourage me to hear from you about how you used these studies and/or what you learned.
Where to next?
New Testament Studies
Old Testament Studies
Learn to study: Bible Study 101
Photo by Jaka Škrlep on Unsplash
Podcast Season 4, Episodes 1-18