Did Mark Make a Mistake in His Opening Quotation?
A reader wrote in to TGC:
The Gospel of Mark begins, “As it is written in Isaiah the prophet, ‘Behold I send my messenger before your face, who will prepare your way.’” Only problem: that quote is from Malachi, not Isaiah. Did Mark just fumble the ball here? How do we make sense of this apparent error in Scripture?
Rikk Watts, professor of New Testament studies at Regent College in Vancouver and author of Isaiah’s New Exodus in Mark, provides the response. In short, “So what initially looks like an error turns out, when viewed in the light of ancient literary practice, to be a highly informative summary of Mark’s Gospel.”