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Review of Biblical Literature Blog

Mark 13 and the Return of the Shepherd: The Narrative Logic of Zechariah in Mark
Sloan, Paul T.

London: Bloomsbury, 2019 pp. x + 253. $114.00

Series Information
Library of New Testament Studies, 604

Description: Paul T. Sloan presents a detailed interpretation of Mark's Olivet Discourse in light of the Gospel's many allusions to the book of Zechariah, and argues that previous studies have rightly demonstrated the influence of Zechariah 9Ė14 on the Passion Narratives. Sloan shows that this influence is not merely confined to Mark's description of Jesus' final week, but also permeates much of his narrative; informing the Gospel's presentation of Jesus' royal identity, his action in the temple, the role of suffering in the bringing of God's kingdom, and the arrangement and interpretation of the Olivet Discourse. Sloan begins with an extensive review of scholarship on the presence of Zechariah in Mark before analyzing the reception of relevant texts from Zechariah in Second Temple literature. He proceeds to a fresh examination of potential allusions to Zechariah throughout Mark, focusing especially on Mark's use of Zechariah 13:7 and 14:5. In addition to influencing significant themes in Mark's Gospel, Sloan argues that Zechariah provides a helpful framework by which to interpret Mark 13, offering a potential solution to a notorious crux interpretum, namely, why Jesus answers a question about the temple with reference to the coming of the son of man.

Subjects: Bible, Hebrew Bible/Old Testament, Prophetic Literature, Book of the Twelve, New Testament, Synoptic Gospels, Mark, Literature, Methods, Literary Approaches, Narrative Criticism, Zechariah, New Testament Use of Old Testament

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Review by Barry L. Blackburn
Published 7/30/2020
Citation: Barry L. Blackburn, review of Paul T. Sloan, Mark 13 and the Return of the Shepherd: The Narrative Logic of Zechariah in Mark, Review of Biblical Literature [http://www.bookreviews.org] (2020).


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