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Mark 8:27 - 16:20 - Concordia Commentary

by Voelz, James ;  Mitchell, Christopher

Item #: 156075 / 2019 / Hardback with Jacket / 1320 Pages


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This second and final commentary on the Gospel of Mark, covering verses 8:27–16:20, details the revelation of who the Christ is, the fate of the revealed Christ played out, His appearances to His disciples, the sending of the apostles, and Christ’s ascension.

Special attention is given to the ending of Mark’s Gospel. The early church father Eusebius, who was tasked by Emperor Constantine with assembling copies of the Sacred Scriptures for the new churches in Constantinople in the early fourth century AD, offers strong evidence that up until that time the majority of New Testament manuscripts ended with the statement regarding the women “for they were afraid,” i.e., at 16:8. But the so-called “long ending,” what we know as 16:9–20, was known to him, and in subsequent centuries it achieved total dominance as the conclusion to the Second Gospel, thus appearing in the English text of the KJV. To respect this longstanding tradition, the editors have concluded this volume with textual notes and commentary on these final twelve verses.

About the Author

James W. Voelz is professor of exegetical theology (New Testament) at Concordia Seminary, St. Louis, Mo., where he has taught since 1989. Previously he taught at Concordia Theological Seminary, Springfield, Ill./Fort Wayne, Ind. (1975–1989), and served as pastoral assistant at Zion Lutheran Church, Fort Wayne (1984–1988).

Dr. Voelz is a graduate of Concordia College, Milwaukee, Wis. (A.A., 1965), Concordia Senior College, Fort Wayne (B.A. in classics, 1967), and Concordia Seminary, St. Louis (M.Div., 1971). He earned his Ph.D. in biblical studies from Cambridge University, England (1978). He has done post-doctoral study with Bo Reicke (1982) and George B. Caird (1983). He is a member of Studiorum Novi Testamenti Societas (SNTS), the international NT society, in which he has been co-chair of seminars for over twenty years, including "The Greek of the New Testament." He has presented numerous papers at the SNTS and at the Society of Biblical Literature, in which he is also on the steering committee of the Mark Section. His Fundamental Greek Grammar has been published by Concordia Publishing House since 1986, and his hermeneutics textbook, What Does This Mean? Principles of Biblical Interpretation in the Post-Modern World, since 1995. His essay "The Language of the New Testament" in Aufstieg und Niedergang der römischen Welt (1984) is a standard in the field. Dr. Voelz has lectured widely throughout The Lutheran Church—Missouri Synod at conferences for pastors and laity alike.

Jim and Judy (née Hayes) have been married since April 2, 1977, and have one son, Jonathan.


"This commentary on Mark is so rich in content that it will become the commentary against which other Markan commentaries will be measured. In method, Voelz employs a literary approach in his interpretation, one founded on paying exceptionally close attention to details of Greek grammar and supplemented by an awareness of issues related to the oral reception of the Gospel. In content, the center and most critical section of the Gospel is to be found in 8:27–10:52. There Mark tells of the identity and destiny of the Christ and what this means for his disciples. Scholars, pastors, seminarians, and students will read this lucidly written commentary with great profit."

—Jack Dean Kingsbury, Aubrey Lee Brooks Professor Emeritus of Biblical Theology, Union Presbyterian Seminary, Richmond, Virginia

"James Voelz’s commentary is a provocative and thoughtful analysis; all readers should appreciate his proper emphasis on Mark’s distinctive language and style throughout. It is clear that we are dealing with a master of the exegetical craft. The commentary deserves our close study."

—J. Keith Elliott, Emeritus Professor of New Testament Textual Criticism, University of Leeds, England

"In this very fine commentary on the Gospel of Mark, Professor James Voelz brings together grammar lexical data, relevant parallels with biblical and extrabiblical literature, perceptive exegesis, and theological insight. The result is a masterful commentary that will be of great use to students, pastors, and scholars. I highly recommend it."

—Craig A. Evans, John Bisagno Distinguished Professor of Christin Origins, Houston Baptist University, Houston, Texas

"Those blessed to have sat at the feet of Professor Voelz (myself included) learned how a close reading of the Greek text unveils the riches of the text in service to the proclamation of Christ. With this volume, Voelz illustrates the same. In particular, his treatment of the denouement of Mark’s account of the Gospel (15:33–41) bears great insight. His attention to Mark’s literary style demonstrates the Gospel writer’s sophistication as seen in comparison to other ancient texts (e.g., Plato’s Phaedo). Even more, such attention to detail reveals and extols Christ in all his grandeur."

—Kevin Golden, Ph.D., Pastor, Village Lutheran Church, Ladue, Missouri

"These two volumes are much more than a commentary. James Voelz shows in a detailed introduction, in numerous excursuses, in well-argued textual notes, and in outstanding commentary sections how the literary style, the grammatical characteristics, and the narrative structure and flow of the Gospel of Mark serve its content: the testimony about Jesus Christ, the Son of God, his words, and his healing and saving ministry. Dr. Voelz argues for the view that the original Gospel according to Mark ended at 16:8, and Christopher Mitchell offers an excellent exposition to the 'long ending' (16:9–20)."

—Peter Balla, Károli Gáspár University of the Reformed Church in Hungary, Budapest, Hungary

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