Week 7–The Roman Empire and The Life of Jesus

Salome With Head of John the Baptist, by Titian (1515)

John-Mark, by Frans Hils (1625)

This week we are going to continue a bit with our studies in Roman literature by reading the myth of Remus and Romulous. It is really short, and weird. We are also going to read a book–The Gospel of Mark. This book was written by a friend of the apostle Peter, John-Mark. We also see John Mark mentioned in the book of Acts (Acts 15:36-41). Mark actually had some failures in his walk and Paul discusses not wanting to take him on a missionary journey. Barnabas, disagrees, wanting to restore him. Barnabas and Paul quarrel about this so much that they part company. Barnabas takes Mark, and Paul goes with Silas. Eventually, Mark is fully restored to ministry. When Paul wrote to Timothy in 2 Timothy 4:11, he says, “Only Luke is with me. Take Mark, and bring him with thee: for he is profitable to me for the ministry.” So in the end, the Lord restored him. Isn’t that just like our gracious Lord? ❤

The Gospel of Mark was written in Rome. Most scholars believe that it was the first written, and they date it at approximately AD 50.

Mark was not one of the disciples, but he did follow them around. In fact, he mentions himself anonymously in an embarrassing incident that occurred the night Jesus was arrested– “And there followed him a certain young man, having a linen cloth cast about his naked body; and the young men laid hold on him: And he left the linen cloth, and fled from them naked.” (Mark 14:51-52). Most scholars agree that this is probably talking about him! Now Mark didn’t just walk around naked, dressed in sheets. He was woken up in the middle of the night and didn’t take the time to get dressed, before running out to see what was going on with Jesus. In fact, some people say that he may have been watching while Jesus was praying in the garden as well. But we don’t know for sure. Let’s ask him when we meet him! We also know that the early church met at the home of Mark’s mother, Mary, in Jerusalem.

“To the hard working and accomplishment oriented Romans, Mark wrote a gospel that emphasizes Jesus as God’s Servant. Because no one cares about the pedigree of a servant, the gospel of Mark has no genealogy of Jesus. Another indication that Mark wrote his Gospel for the Roman mind is that he uses more Latin words than any of the other Gospels. “There are also more Latin phrases and idioms like centurio (15:39), quadrans (12:42),flagellare (15:15), speculator (6:27), census (12:14), sextarius (7:4),praetorium (15:6), than in the other Gospels.” (Robertson) When Bible translators go to a people who have never had the Scriptures in their own language, they usually begin by translating the Gospel of Mark. Mark is the most translated book in all the world. One reason is because it is the shortest Gospel; but the other reason is because this Gospel was written for people unfamiliar with first century Judaism. Mark wrote it for the Romans.” (David Guzik)

This is the shortest of the Gospel accounts, and it focuses less on the words of Christ and more on the deeds of Christ. It is a fast moving book, and you will see a lot of healing and miracles. You will read four chapters a day. What I need you do do for me is write down your favorite verse from each chapter (there are 16). Please also underline these verses in your Bibles.

This Week’s Assignments–




  • Read Mark Chapters 5-8
  • Watch a summary of Shakespeare’s play Julius Caesar (I am glad I am not teaching it; it isn’t my favorite)
  • Study for midterm (Friday)
  • Study vocabulary (finish sentences)
  • Work on final draft of essay (Due Friday)
  • Watch the Fuel Project Video

Wednesday and Thursday

  • Wednesday read Mark Chapters 9-12
  • Thursday read Mark Chapters 13-16
    • Study for midterm (Friday)
    • Study vocabulary (finish sentences)
    • Work on final draft of essay (Due Friday)
  • Grammar

    Thinking and Writing– (email to me by 10pm Thursday night)

    1. Write down a verse from each chapter of Mark that you like the best (16 in all)
    2. Why is it important for us to read the Gospel accounts, even if we already know them?
    3. Is there anything that stuck out to you when you read it this time? What spoke to your heart the most?
    4. Study your vocabulary words–send me your vocab sentences
    5. Have you studied the material we have read so far this year?

    I just want to say that you should be so thankful that your homework this week was also a tool of the Lord to work in your hearts. I love you guys and there is nothing that I want more for you, than to see you growing in the wisdom and knowledge of the Lord. ❤

Finish your final draft of the Epic/Myth project (Due Tomorrow November 6)

Check the following:

  • Proper MLA format
  • Proper length
  • You have created an epic hero who faces extreme difficulty
  • You have an exotic setting
  • You have sensory details
  • You have epithets
  • You have precise language
  • You create suspense or use foreshadowing
  • You use some character archetypes
  • Free of spelling and grammatical errors

Have your mom or dad edit your 2nd rough draft. I need you to turn in your 2nd rough draft (typed MLA) with your final draft. Your second rough draft needs to have the archetypes in the margins and I need to see where you underlined your suspense and epithets. I also want to see you underline in you 2nd rough draft where you added sensory details (imagery). After your parent has edited your rough draft, they need to sign their name on the back page telling me that they helped you check for mistakes and went over them with you. 🙂

The Fall of Rome, John Martin


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