The Passion of God’s Son, according to St. Mark

It is that time of year again.  Last year I wrote a post on chanting the passion during Lent and made available my notations on the passion of St. Matthew as a pdf for download.  This year our lectionary focuses on the Gospel of Mark, so I am making my notations for his account available as well.

The Passion in Mark was my very first attempt 12 years ago and it is still my favorite.  The orality of Mark’s Gospel is particularly vivid and powerful.   The phrase, “King of the Jews” resounds again and again until the INRI is finally plastered above Jesus.  The staccato like back and forth between narrator and the barrage of questions, insults, and mockery keeps the hearer agitated and unsettled. But the culmination of this commotion is the centurion’s confession, “Surely this man was the Son of God!”—the final voice in the narrative.  It is a confession that we knew already from Mark 1:1, but it was suppressed throughout the narrative, for only the cross could bring out its true, terrifying meaning.  And then the burial … slow, monotonous, lifeless.

Thanks and appreciation to Pastor Dan Suelzle who engraved the notations for me.


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  1. Tim Koch March 19, 2012

    Dr. Herrmann,
    Thank you! Disregard my email in your inbox.

  2. Jeff Kloha March 20, 2012

    This is an excellent description of the emphases in Mark’s passion account. How did a Reformation historian learn to read the text so well?

    When will we be hearing this in chapel?

    • Erik Herrmann March 20, 2012

      Ha! Too kind, Jeff (though I am seminary trained–Wir sind alle universal, i.e. none of us are mere specialists). We will hear the Passion according to St. Mark on Monday of Holy Week.

    • Jeff Kloha March 22, 2012

      What?!? We’re all “universalists”?!? I can hear the blogs ramping up already.

  3. Rev. Anthony Kobak March 20, 2012

    If this is recorded in chapel, could you post the recording. I would love to hear this..Thanks

  4. Roger H Frost April 2, 2012

    The Truth Will Set you Free

    By HIS stripes we are healed

  5. Trackback: Concordia Theology » The Passion of God’s Son, according to Mark: Audio File

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