Week 9: Mark 15

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Day 1: Mark 15:1-15

  1. Did the Jewish leaders have the legal right to execute Jesus?
  2. Why is the charge of calling himself King of the Jews powerful to a Roman prefect?
    • Think of Roman mythology. Did the Romans believe in one God or many?
    • Why would it not be a big deal to a Roman than Jesus said He was God?
  3. Did Jesus give a clear answer?
  4. Did Jesus respond to the accusations?
    • How did Pilate feel about this?
  5. This was the first appearance before Pilate. Luke 23:1-12 gives us information about his appearance before Herod as well.
    • Why would Luke include this detail and why would Mark leave it out?
    • Does this alter the historicity of the crucifixion?
    • Is this a contradiction or just missing information?
  6. Why is the crime of Barabbas ironic in this situation?
  7. Did Pilate believe Jesus was innocent? (Luke 23:14, Mark 15:10)
  8. Was Pilate more concerned with doing what was just or what was a politically good move?
  9. Was this the same crowd of people who had welcomed Jesus a week earlier or is it a different mix of people coming into town for the Passover?
  10. Think about this scene for a moment. Who is trying, at least a little, to save Jesus? Who is trying to kill him? Is this how it should be?
  11. Why, in the end, did Pilate agree to have Jesus crucified?
  12. In this instance, Jesus was a substitution for Barabbas for an earthly judgment. Is this the same as taking his place for the judgment of sins by God?

Research Question: What is involved in scourging? (Warning: This is very violent)

Day 2: Psalm 22:1-21

Note: People would memorize large sections (or all) of the OT. When someone would say the first line of a Psalm, the whole thing would be brought to the memories of those who heard

  1. What is the first line of this Psalm?
  2. What is the main theme of this section? (verses 3-5)
  3. What do the people taunt this person with? (verses 6-8)
  4. What is his life poured out like? How does his heart feel? (verse 14)
  5. What has happened to his hands and feet? (verse 16)
  6. What do the onlookers do with his clothes? (verse 18)
  7. What kind of death does this sound like?

Research Questions:

  1. When was this Psalm written?
  2. When was crucifixion invented?
  3. When was Jesus crucified?

Day 3: Isaiah 52:13-53:12

  1. How does this servant look? (52:14, 53:2)
  2. Was he accepted or rejected? (53:3)
  3. What did he carry? (verse 4)
  4. For whose sins did they think he was punished? (verse 4)
  5. For whose sins was actually he punished? (verse 5)
  6. Why was he beaten and whipped? (verse 5)
  7. Who laid the sins on him? (verse 6)
  8. Did this person say a word? (verse 7)
  9. Was he justly condemned? (verse 8)
  10. Did he have descendants? (verse 8)
  11. Where was he buried? (verse 9)
  12. What was his life made as an offering for? (verse 10)
  13. Will he have descendants? (verse 10)
    • How can that be if he died without any?
  14. Will he live?
    • How can that be if he died?
  15. What did this person make possible? (11)
  16. Who is this prophecy about?
  17. What did Jesus do for us on the cross?

Research Question: Who are the descendants of Abraham? Check out Galatians 3: 6-9 and 26-29. Could verse 10 in this chapter of Isaiah be referencing this same idea?

Day 4: Mark 15:16-32

  1. What did they dress Jesus in?
  2. What did the strike him with? (Matthew 27:29)
  3. Who was forced to carry Jesus’ cross?
    • Who were his sons?
    • Why is this a significant detail?  (See Romans 16:13)
    • Where was Mark likely written?
  4. Where was the other Simon: Simon Peter?
    • Who would be the eyewitness if we didn’t know this detail?
  5. What did they do with his clothes?
    • Where have we seen this prophesied?
  6. How did the thieves on the crosses next to Jesus treat him? (Like 23:39-43)
  7. What did those watching mock him with?
  8. Could they deny that he had saved others?
    • Could Jesus have saved himself in that moment? (Matthew 26:53)
    • Why didn’t he? (Matthew 26:54)

Research Question: How does one die when crucified?

Day 5: Mark 15:33-41

  1. How long was the land dark for?
    • What is darkness usually associated with in the OT? (Deuteronomy 28:29, Amos 8:9-10. Jeremiah 15:9)
  2. What did Jesus say from the cross?
    • What Psalm is this the first line of?
    • What is the significance of this? (2 Corinthians 5:21, Galatians 3:13)
  3. What else did Jesus cry out? (Luke 23:46, John 19:30, Psalm 22:29-31)
  4. What happened immediately after this?
    • What is the veil? (Exodus 26:31, Hebrews 10:19-20)
    • What is the significance of the veil tearing?
  5. What did the Centurion recognize?
    • Why is this declaration so incredible?
    • How do you think this man felt?
    • Did this man likely mean “Son of God” in the same way Jews would have understood it?
  6. Who was at the cross with Jesus when he died?
    • Why is this a significant detail?
  7. Where were the rest of the disciples?

Research Questions:

  1. Is there other historical or astrological evidence of a solar eclipse and earthquake (Matthew 27:51) happening at this time?
  2. What is the Greek word that Jesus cries out in John 19:30?
    • What does it mean in Greek?
    • When else was it used?
    • Do you think there is a connection between the common use of this word and what Jesus accomplished on the cross for us?

Day 6: Mark 15:42-47

  1. Who is Joseph of Arimathea?
    • Would he have been a part of the council that sentenced Jesus to death?
  2. Were tombs a common thing for the people of Jesus’ economic status?
  3. What was this tomb like? (Matthew 27:60)
  4. How does this fact fulfill prophecy? (Isaiah 53:9)
  5. Did Jews leave bodies out like the Romans did? (Deuteronomy 21:22-23)
  6. Pilate was surprised that he was dead. How do we know he was dead? (John 19:31-36)
  7. Why would they be rushed? (verse 42)

Research Question: Do we have good evidence for the location of this tomb today?

Resource: Podcast by Capturing Christianity interviewing Dr. Calum Miller and Dr. Max Baker-Hytch about the historical evidence for the resurrection. This episode focuses on the historical evidence that the tomb was actually the one that we commemorate today.