The books of Matthew and Luke begin with the events surrounding the birth of the Lord Jesus Christ.  The book of John begins by introducing us to the eternal Son of God. John 1:1 says, “In the beginning was the Word, and the Word was with God, and the Word was God.”  Then John 1:14 says, “And the Word was made flesh, and dwelt among us, (and we beheld his glory, the glory as of the only begotten of the Father,) full of grace and truth.”  This leaves no doubt that the eternal Word is none other than the Lord Jesus.

Mark 1 begins by saying, “The beginning of the gospel of Jesus Christ, the Son of God.” (Verse 1).  Right away, Mark refers to Jesus Christ as the Son of God!  His book opens with the beginning of the public life and ministry of the Lord.  Mark was not one of the twelve apostles (neither was Luke).  We have no record that Mark ever knew or saw the Lord during His life on earth.  It is understood that he was taught by the Apostle Peter.  The relationship between Peter and Mark was so close that in 1 Peter 5:13, Peter refers to Mark as his son. 

Mark begins by speaking of the forerunner of Christ…John the Baptist.  He tells of the ministry of John being to teach the “baptism of repentance for the remission of sins.” (Verse 4).  In verses 9-11 we read, “And it came to pass in those days, that Jesus came from Nazareth of Galilee, and was baptized of John in Jordan. And straightway coming up out of the water, he saw the heavens opened, and the Spirit like a dove descending upon him: And there came a voice from heaven, saying, Thou art my beloved Son, in whom I am well pleased.”  What a blessed representation of the Holy Trinity here as Christ came out of the water, the Spirit descended upon Him like a dove, and the Father spoke from Heaven declaring that Christ was His Son and that He was well pleased with Him.

Verses 12-13 give a passing notice of the Lord’s temptations in the wilderness.  The Lord led Matthew and Luke to give us more information about this event.

The four Gospels present the Lord in four different characteristics.  In Matthew, He is presented as the King.  In Luke, He is presented as the Son of Man.  In John, He is presented as the Son of God.  In Mark, He is presented as a Servant.  That characteristic is born out throughout Mark’s Gospel. 

The rest of Mark, chapter one can be divided like this:

1. The Servant in Galilee preaching the Gospel of the Kingdom. Verses 14-15.

2. The Calling of fellow servants. Verses 16-20.

3. The Servant in Capernaum. Verses 21-28.

4. Peter’s Mother-in-law raised up. Verses 29-31.

5. The Servant heals many and casts out demons. Verses 32-34.

6. The Servant in prayer. Verse 35.

7. The Interruption and the renewed service. Verses 36-39.

8. The Leper healed. Verses 40-45.

With only sixteen chapters, Mark is the smallest of the four Gospels, but its truths are relevant and its description of the Lord Jesus as a servant is so important to getting a full description of who Christ was while on the earth.  (382.4)