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Laura Mackie BISHOP ULLATHORNE CATHOLIC SCHOOL RELIGIOUS EDUCATION - COURSEWORK ASSIGNMENT YEAR 10 AO1 1a) Explain what a study of St mark's Gospel can tell Christians about the nature of discipleship. (16 marks) Discipleship is important theme in Mark's gospel. It is as important for Christians today as it was for the first twelve disciples of Jesus. Discipleship comes from a Latin word meaning " learner ", not only of theoretical knowledge but also he is one who learns by putting into practice the principles of his teacher. Jesus was a teacher and his first followers learnt from him. Jesus chose his disciples to learn how to be his followers and how to give their lives to service for others, he warned them that like him they had to be willing to die and to find life they had to be willing to loose it. He told them that to be a disciple required not only learning from him but from his example. Being a disciple meant new beliefs, new values and a completely different way of life in which apparent success meant failure and apparent failure meant success. Jesus chose twelve disciples because there were to stand for the twelve tribes in Israel, he and they together were to inaugurate the Kingdom of God on Earth. Jesus chose ordinary men to be his followers as supposed to those who might be expected to represent Israel such as religious leaders. They were now to be Jesus' representatives in the new Israel. The first four were just fishermen. In Mark's Gospel 1: 16 - 20 we are told how Jesus chose them, the brothers Simon and Andrew and James and John. He called them away from the lakeside where they were mending their nets and said, "I will make you fishers of men" (Mark 1: 17). At once they followed him. But why did Jesus choose fishermen? ...read more.


Faith in Jesus is also essential to true discipleship. In Mark 4: 35 - 40 Jesus' disciples' faith was tested, when the boat they were all in hit a storm and nearly began to fill with water. Jesus was at the back of the boat asleep. The disciples woke Jesus up and said " Teacher, don't you care that we are about to die?" Jesus stood up and commanded the wind, "Be quiet!" and he said to the waves, "Be still!" The wind died down, and there was a great calm. Then Jesus said to his disciples "Why are you frightened? Have you still no faith?" Jesus expected the disciples to have complete trust in him, he wanted them to have faith in him, to believe that he wouldn't let their boat sink he was testing them and they failed. That time, they did not have faith. Christians today should have faith in Jesus all the time we should have complete trust in him. Faith is very important as we are given a choice in what we believe. We are not forced to make a decision we can decide our selves whether we have faith or not. Another important time in Mark's Gospel about discipleship is Peter's declaration about at Caesarea Philippi. In Mark 8:27-30. Laura Mackie Jesus himself asks his disciples, "Who do you say I am?" Peter replied, "You are the Messiah." This was important to Mark because it was the first time the disciple recognized Jesus as the Messiah, so from then on in every Christian disciple should recognize Jesus as the Messiah. In the Final Commission, Mark 16:14-18, when Jesus appears to the eleven. The disciples were given their last commission - "Go throughout the whole world and preach the Gospel to the whole human race." (V 15) The twelve disciples were to play a very important part in spreading the Good News after Jesus' death and resurrection. ...read more.


They can feely choose to do good for Christian reasons just like adults can make up their own minds freely. Laura Mackie Some Christians would hold that children are not capable of committing themselves to the fullness of discipleship. It is perfectly true they cannot take on the role of discipleship in the sense of the first disciples but discipleship is about doing what one can, within the limits of our respective lives. Faith and discipleship are developmental. I'm sure there are many adults who do not achieve the fullness of what it means to be a disciple either. In a way, we are all on a journey to fulfilment and the road must be travelled every day. In conclusion to this, one can see that there are many different perspectives, each of which have value. Overall I believe that children can be disciples and Christians because discipleship is a journey. At the start, when the child is young and new to religion, they may make mistakes because they do not have a full understanding of what discipleship means. But as time goes on and the person gets older they are sure to learn and get better at their role in the Church life. Faith is a gift and a gift that must be looked after. Building a relationship with God and aiming to live life according to Gospel values, takes time and commitment. Mark's Gospel highlights some of the qualities we need to become a follower of Jesus. It is then down to us to build our lives on the advice, and as soon as the process can begin the better. Discipleship is developmental, and I think, should start at an early age with baptism. ~ Laura Mackie * Mark's Good News Gospel * St Mark's Gospel - by Gordan Geddes and Jane Griffiths * The Roman Catholic Tradition: Christian Lifestyle and Behaviour - by Joanne Cleave ~ ?? ?? ?? ?? 1 1 ...read more.

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