For some time now I have felt I should do a study of the Gospel of Mark. To begin, let's get introduced to the author of this Gospel, John Mark. He is not mentioned, per se, in the book, except, according to some, in Mark 14:51-52.
Studying someone's life stimulates concentration and captures the imagination. There is human interest when we see or hear how someone else managed in a given situation. This is especially true when the circumstances are similar to what we might be facing at the time. The more we learn from others the less we need to learn through the hard knocks of experience.
To do a biographical study we will use what I call the "3C" approach: collect, correlate and crystalize. We'll begin by collecting from the Bible information about the character to be studied. You can read about him in the verses mentioned in Mark 14, also in Acts 12 and 13 and in a couple of Paul's letters and in 1 Peter. Reflect on the context in which Mark is mentioned. Then, once we collect as much information as we can find we'll correlate it into either a character analysis or an historical portrait. The latter emphasizes events in the person's life while the former focuses on the qualities of a person's character.
Mark 14:51-52 says: "A young man, wearing nothing but a linen garment, was following Jesus. When they seized him, he fled naked, leaving his garment behind." Curiosity about Jesus almost got the best of him, but he got away, though embarrassed when he had to flee naked when they tried grabbing his garment. Quite a humble beginning to a story that eventually led to his becoming an associate of both Peter and Paul.
Let's find out what lessons we can learn from studying his life.