In Mark’s Gospel, Jesus is described as the Suffering Son of God who is destined to enter death for our sins, thereby fulfilling his duty as the messiah. While the apostles themselves were not depicted as truly knowing and understanding this messianic duty during the Gospel, it is clear that the author knew exactly what Jesus had to go through. For instance, the author includes many different details about how Jesus is ridiculed and beaten by the guards and other Jews. Even the context of the specific words used to describe events in this Gospel, such as “The Agony in the Garden,” really portrays the sense of punishment and suffering that the author is trying to convey.
Jesus himself is surprisingly content with his looming death, even though the apostles do not truly believe that such an event will occur. When a woman anoints Jesus with the expensive oil in Bethany, the apostles cry out in anger while Jesus calmly responds “’Let her alone. Why do you make trouble for her? She has done a good thing for me. The poor you will always have with you … But you will not always have me” (Mark, 14: 6-7). Jesus retains this attitude until the very end of his crucifixion when he exclaims “’My God, my God, why have you forsaken me?” (Mark 15: 34). It was very interesting that Jesus would say this and change his tone after staying true to his messianic duty for so long, and I believe that this is done to truly describe Jesus as the Suffering Son of God. Although he understood his duty and was more than willing to carry it out four our good, the amount of suffering that Jesus endured forced him to proclaim those words after his crucifixion, marking a shift in his portrayal for but a moment in Mark’s Gospel.