Used by permission of Dan Lietha
The first word in Mark is Archē, Greek for beginning, specifically the beginning of the Good News. In just 15 verses, Mark goes from Isaiah, to John the Baptizer, to the baptism of Jesus of Nazareth, to his temptation, ending with his opening words, The time has come and the kingdom of God is close at hand. Repent, and believe the Good News. NJB
It is the same Good News God gave to Noah after the flood, I establish my Covenant with you. NJB The Covenant was and still is a Good News Covenant. God for His part promises not to completely destroy mankind because of our sin and in return He asks that we believe in Him, that we repent daily and do our best to follow in His ways.
With King David we say,
All day long I hope in you Because of your goodness, Yahweh. Remember your kindness, Yahweh, Your love, that you showed long ago. Do not remember the sins of my youth; But rather, with your love remember me. NJB
There is every reason to believe David composed the 25th Psalm years after his sin against both God and Uriah. David deserved utter destruction, but God placed a rainbow in the heavens to remind us (God needs no reminder) that He is a God of Mercy, that He is a God who will save mankind as He did through Noah.
The rainbow is a sign of salvation. Noah first received the sign that is repeated with every washing of the earth by the heavenly waters. John used the water to wash believers in a renewal of the Covenant of the Rainbow; God is a God of Mercy. Jesus who needed no repentance took that Covenant upon himself when he required John to baptism him.
Jesus became the Living Ark, the sole source of salvation in the final destruction of evil. As Peter has it, This also prefigures what delivers us now, the water of immersion, which is not the removal of dirt from the body, but one’s pledge to keep a good conscience toward God. CJB Or, in being baptized we are turning to God and asking him to cleanse our hearts from sin. TLB
Jesus said it simply, Repent and believe.
Be righteous and do good.