A Focused Christological Reading Of Mark 8:22–9:13 -- By: Kevin W. Larsen
TRINJ 26:1 (Spring 2005) p. 33
A Focused Christological Reading
Of Mark 8:22–9:13
Kevin W. Larsen is currently Associate Professor of New Testament and Theology at Lincoln Christian College—East Coast, Bel Air, Maryland. As of June 1, 2005 he will be Professor of New Testament and Director of Institutional Research and Effectiveness at Roanoke Bible College, Elizabeth City, North Carolina.
Markan scholarship has long recognized that a literary relationship exists between 8:22–26 and 10:46–52, as these two episodes are the only healings of blindness in the gospel. Often claimed as support for this “framing” function of 8:22–26 and 10:46–52 is an internal compositional parallelism. There are three predictions of Jesus’ rejection in Jerusalem (8:27–32a; 9:30–31; 10:32–34), followed by misunderstanding (8:32b–33; 9:32–34, 38; 10:35–41), followed by renewed teaching by Jesus on this topic (8:34–9:1; 9:35–37, 39–50; 10:42–45).1 However, what follows 9:1, the transfiguration episode (9:2–13), is unlike any other episode in the gospel of Mark.
On a related note, Markan scholarship has long recognized the importance of the healing of the blind man at Bethsaida (8:22–26) as parabolic of the disciples and their consistent inability to understand who Jesus is (4:13; 6:52; 8:17, 21; 9:10, 32).2 When related to the other giving of sight miracle at 10:46–52 there is hope that the disciples will understand Jesus’ identity and mission. Their sight i...
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