The book of Mark falls into a unique literary genre called the gospel but also can be divided into the two literary genres of sayings and narrative. The book contains the recording of the sayings of Jesus, who is proclaimed as messiah in this book, and is filled with the writer’s narratives of what this most profound character did in his life (Fee and Stuart, pg.127). The book of Mark is unique from the two other synoptic gospels because the author bypasses the introductory genealogies and the background of Jesus’ conception and birth. He begins his narrative at the Jordan River where John the Baptist is baptizing. John the Baptist attests to one coming who is greater than himself and whom will baptize with the Holy Spirit. The person who then arrives and has John Baptize him is this coming one, Jesus. The main theme of this much shorter and more concise gospels is to proclaim that Jesus is truly the Son of God who truly came to Earth to take the punishment of mankind’s sin by suffering and dying for them (Miller, pg. 318). Mark does describes the most imperative events to prove Christ’s divinity like; Jesus’ calling of his 12 disciples, he records many of Jesus’s parables, sayings, how Jesus and his disciples were accused of breaking the Sabbath, the beheading of John the Baptist, his love for the little children, the cleansing of the temple, the woman’s (possibly Mary, sister of Martha and Lazarus) anointing of Jesus just prior to his crucifixion, Judas’ kiss of betrayal, the trial of Jesus and his sacrificial crucifixion for our sins, and closes with the miraculous resurrection on that third day. The book ends with a section that may have been added by an editor of the book in chapter sixteen verses nine through twenty because the earliest manuscripts do not include this section.
Acts The book of Acts is narrative in its genre but because of its difference and because it more closely relates to how we operate as believers today, most readers approach it very differently than Old Testament narratives. The main theme of the book of Acts is to show how Jesus’ followers are to spread the gospel about his sufficient sacrifice and resurrection starting first in Jerusalem, then in Samaria, and ultimately to the utter most parts of the Earth. It also narrates how the church was born immediately after Jesus’ ascension. It is commonly believed to have been written by Luke because of the literary similarities between Luke and Acts. The book’s storyline weaves through many wonderful and intriguing events like; the first persecutions and struggles in Jerusalem, the harsh punishments by God of Ananias and Sapphira, the martyrdom of Stephen with Saul standing by, the bibles most famous conversion of Saul who becomes Paul the Apostle, and chronicles the missionary journeys of Paul. The book abruptly ends when Paul finally arrives in Rome for his appeal to Caesar and it closes without telling of what was Paul’s final end (Miller, pgs. 360-376).
The book of Galatians is of course of the epistle genre and is undisputedly believed to be a Pauline epistle with some degree of dispute about when it was written. The main theme of Galatians is that faith in Jesus is what saves us and that we do not need to observe Jewish laws to be saved. Paul begins this letter angrily, rebuking those who had brought in these Judaist rules and even wish they castrated themselves. He also say let anyone who teaches a gospel different than the one he taught would be cursed. He continues his teaching with common sense, asking them if they received the Holy Spirit by obeying the law and reproving them for starting in the spirit and now trying to be perfected by human efforts. Paul then really goes out on a limb by using the story of Abraham and his seed, proclaiming that the law was only to last until this seed arrived, who was Jesus Christ. Paul closes out this epistle on the