Lectionary Year B
July 9, 2000
Mark 6:1-10

Step IV: Broader Context


1. Mark 1: 1-6 contains some different material from the parallels in the other two Synpotic gospels (Matthew 13: 54-58 and Luke 4: 16-30):

a. Jesus is amazed by the unbelief of the people
b. Mark has Jesus accompanied by the disciples
c. Jesus COULD NOT perform any miracles other than a few healings there because of the people's unbelief.
d. Mark bluntly has the people call Jesus "the carpenter", not "the son of a carpenter."

2. Jesus as Carpenter:

a. Justin Martyr, DIALOGUE WITH TRYPHO LXXXVIII--- "(Jesus) was in the habit of working as a carpenter when among men, making plows and yokes."

b. Celsus, Christianity's acerbic 2nd century critic, sneered that Jesus was a mere "carpenter by trade". Origen conveniently forgets Mark 6: 1-6 and responded, "In none of the Gospels current in the churches is Jesus himself ever described as a carpenter" (CONTRA CELSUM, VI.34 and 36). (From Bruce Metzger, Textual Comm., footnote 1 on page 88).

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