• Ed Lundberg

The Daunting Idea of Writing a Book

I am certain that most people at one point or another felt compelled to write a book. However, for whatever reason, that desire never came to fruition. Perhaps some people didn’t have the time necessary to take on such a quest. Or maybe certain people lost interest. I would also think that once a person might started the task, they soon realized just how daunting the requirements are. I also think that people who have a strong desire to “want” to write a book realized that writing the book is one challenging aspect, while getting it published is another. Finally, it might be the case that some want to write a book but have nothing to say.

I understand that once a person has completed the task of writing, editing, and more editing, that the final submission is often met with rejection. Therefore, the possibility of facing rejection as a reward for months or years of hard work is not something people want to invest in.

So, what is my reason? I understood right for the beginning that the purpose of writing this book is for my own indulgence. I really don’t expect too many people to read it or have any lofty dreams of it being published. I also believe that the end result might be somewhat controversial for mainline Christians. Therefore, I can rest very well at night without any unrealistic expectations.

Yet, I will pursue the end. The final work will be well organized. It will be researched, and it will be entertaining and informative. One aspect of this book that drives me the most is that I am trying to understand what was going on in the mind of the evangelist who wrote Mark. There is obviously a point he wants to make in trying to convince others that his work is the “beginning of the good news about Jesus Christ, Son of God.” From that opening statement he goes about to prove it. It is also interesting how the writing is organized and how various literary techniques were utilized to emphasize certain themes he wants his audience to hear. As well, there are certain allegorical “secrets” told within the narrative that only the “insiders” of the community will understand.

It is with these intriguing elements of Marks gospel that compels me. I would guess that perhaps it is somewhat like a literary competition that entices one to discover the hidden clues within. So then, the challenge before me is to locate these clues as best as possible and to integrate them into a historical novel to tell a story about Mark from a creative approach. I know that the presentation of this information is completely based on a historical critical study. And any mainline Christian or more so any evangelical Christian will read this and say it is nonsense. Then again, these people who are quick to dismiss such an approach cannot comprehend the intellectual gains New Testament scholars have made over the years. In no way am I naïve enough to think I could write an accurate history of how and why the Gospel of Mark was written. However, it is possible to take the most up to date research and put into a viable scenario that has some resemblance and a possibility of what might have happened. In actuality, the evangelist who wrote Mark was faced with the same dilemma. He had collected various written and oral traditions about the historical Jesus. Then laying out all these traditions and looking at the scope of information he had, he formulated his gospel based on what he believed the theological truth about Jesus to be. In some sense, it is the same process.

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