“Who do you say, I am?” (Mark 8:27,29). The questions of who Jesus is and what does it mean to identity with him are explored from the beginning to the end of the narrative of Mark's Gospel. The answers that the narrative provides are complex. On the one hand, an association with the Markan Jesus involves healing, hope and the promise of life. On the other hand, to identify with Jesus also suggests suffering, fear and trauma. How may this narrative have been heard in the first century CE? Why did this narrative need to be told? Does the narrative have anything left to say to a hearer or reader in the 21st century? Using historical, literary and hermeneutical approaches, you will explore these questions through an examination of the portrait of the Markan Jesus and what it meant/means to identify with this figure.
Dr. Janine Luttick is a lecturer in biblical studies at Australian Catholic University (ACU), in the faculty of theology and philosophy. Before taking up this role, Janine completed a Ph.D at ACU. Her dissertation considered the story of the raising of Jairus’ daughter in Mark’s gospel by examining the role of the body in Mark’s gospel and the function of depictions of females’ bodies in Judaism and Greco-Roman culture in the first century CE. Her current research interests include the study of children, childhood and family in the Bible, and the field of biblical hermeneutics.