Commentaries on the Gospel of Mark

On this page you will find Bible commentaries on the New Testament book of Mark. The commentaries listed first are those that have received the best reviews. You will also find options for commentaries on Mark that help pastors, teachers, and readers with application of the text, commentaries that approach the Scripture verse-by-verse, classic Christian commentaries, and much more.

Top Reviewed Commentaries on the Gospel of Mark



Mark (PNTC) by James R. Edwards


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Reviews and Accolades:

D. A. Carson: “best buy” on Mark; “the fruit of his years of work on this Gospel”

Craig Blomberg, etal: a “priority” commentary on Mark

Tom Schreiner: recommended; “a helpful and clear exposition for pastors”

Keith Mathison: #3 commentary on Mark; “[Edwards’] emphasis on the theology of Mark is especially helpful”

Best for: pastors, educated laypeople

Purpose: From the publisher: “Designed for serious pastors and teachers of the Bible, the Pillar commentaries seek above all to make clear the text of Scripture as we have it…[the authors’] ideal is a blend of rigorous exegesis and exposition, with an eye alert both to biblical theology and the contemporary relevance of the Bible.”



Mark (NICNT) by William L. Lane


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Reviews and Accolades:

Tom Schreiner: recommended; “highly recommended for the pastor and scholar”

Desiring God: #1 recommended commentary on Mark

Keith Mathison: #2 ranked commentary on Mark; “Lane’s commentary on the Gospel of Mark remains a model of clarity”

D.A. Carson: “it was for a long time the standard evangelical commentary on Mark”

Best for: pastors, educated laypeople

Purpose: From the publisher: “Written for scholars, pastors, and lay readers alike…undertaken to provide earnest students of the New Testament with an exposition that is thorough and abreast of modern scholarship and at the same time loyal to the Scriptures as the infallible Word of God.”



Mark (NIVAC) by David E. Garland


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Reviews and Accolades:

D. A. Carson: “best buys” on Mark

Tom Schreiner: recommended, “very helpful exposition”

Craig Blomberg, etal: a “priority” commentary on Mark

Best for: pastors, educated laypeople

Purpose: From the General Editor: The primary goal of the NIV Application Commentary Series is to help you with the difficult but vital task of bringing an ancient message into a modern context. The series not only focuses on application as a finished product but also helps you think through the process of moving from the original meaning of a passage to its contemporary significance. These are commentaries, not popular expositions. They are works of reference, not devotional literature.”p



Mark (NIGTC) by R. T. France


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Reviews and Accolades:

D. A. Carson: “best buy” on Mark; “remarkably accessible and includes a healthy mix of history, theology, social context, even warmth”

Tom Schreiner: recommended; “the most accessible Greek text treatment for pastors”

Keith Mathison: #1 commentary on Mark; “France has not only written the best commentary on [Matthew], he has also written the best commentary on [Mark]”

Best for: pastors trained in the original languages, scholars

Purpose: From the publisher: “At a time when the study of Greek is curtailed in many schools of theology, we hope that the NIGNT will demonstrate the continuing value of studying the Greek New Testament… the volumes of the NIGNT are for students who want something less technical than a full-scale critical commentary… the supreme aim of this series is to serve those who are engaged in the ministry of the Word of God and thus glorify God’s name.”



Mark (BECNT) by Robert H. Stein


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Reviews and Accolades:

Craig Blomberg, etal: a “priority” commentary on Mark

Tom Schreiner: recommended, “very helpful exegesis of the Greek text”

D.A. Carson: “writes at the height of his powers…as good as any other and better than most”

Best for: pastors trained in the original languages, scholars

Purpose: From the Publisher: “The chief concern of the Baker Exegetical Commentary on the New Testament (BECNT) is to provide, within the framework of informed evangelical thought, commentaries that blend scholarly depth with readability, exegetical detail with sensitivity to the whole, and attention to critical problems with theological awareness. We hope thereby to attract the interest of a fairly wide audience, from the scholar who is looking for a thoughtful and independent examination of the text to the motivated lay Christian who craves a solid but accessible exposition.”



Mark (ZECNT) by Mark L. Strauss


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Reviews and Accolades:

Craig Blomberg, etal: a “priority” commentary on Mark

Best for: pastors, teachers, scholars

Purpose: From the publisher: “The idea for this series was refined over time by an editorial board who listened to pastors and teachers express what they wanted to see in a commentary series based on the Greek text…We arrived at a design that includes seven components for the treatment of each biblical passage”: Literary Context, Main Idea, Translation and Graphical Layout, Structure, Exegetical Outline, Explanation of the Text, and Theology in Application.”



Mark (three volumes; WBC) by Robert Guelich


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Reviews and Accolades:

Tom Schreiner: recommended, “for technical research”

Best for: pastors, teachers, scholars

Purpose: From the publisher: “WBC series delivers the best in biblical scholarship, from the leading scholars who share a commitment to Scripture as divine revelation. It emphasizes a thorough analysis of textual, linguistic, structural, and theological evidence. The result is judicious and balanced insight into the meanings of the text in the framework of biblical theology.”



The Gospel of Mark (SRC) by Ben Witherington III


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Reviews and Accolades:

Keith Mathison: #4 ranked commentary on Mark, “This commentary on the Gospel of Mark is one of [Witherington’s] best”

Best for: pastors, educated laypeople

Purpose: From the publisher: “Using sociorhetorical criticism, the New Testament is interpreted within the context of the world in which it was written and read—the rhetorical method makes use of ancient or classical writings and strategies of communication, while the social science method notes issues of cultures and customs.”



Mark (NCBC) by Darrell L. Bock


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Reviews and Accolades:

Craig Blomberg, etal: a “priority” commentary on Mark

Best for: pastors, teachers, scholars

Purpose: From the publisher: “The NCBC aims to elucidate the Hebrew and Christian scriptures for a wide range of intellectually curious individuals…[volumes] do not assume the reader has a great deal of specialized theological knowledge or an impressive command of the Hebrew, Aramaic, or biblical Greek… Utilizing recent gains in rhetorical criticism, social scientific study of the scriptures, narrative criticism and other developing disciplines, this series intends to provide a fresh look at biblical texts, taking advantage of the growing edges in Biblical Studies.”



Mark (two volumes) by Robert H. Gundry


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Reviews and Accolades:

Tom Schreiner: recommended, for “technical research”

Best for: pastors trained in the original languages, scholars

Purpose: From the publisher: “The fullest commentary ever to come out on the Gospel of Mark, this monumental work by Robert H. Gundry, reflecting years of painstaking scholarship, presents a well-argued alternative reading of the Greek text of Mark.”



Mark (TNTC) by R. Alan Cole


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Reviews and Accolades:

Keith Mathison: #5 ranked commentary on Mark, “high level of quality”

Best for: pastors, educated laypeople

Purpose: From the publisher: This series is “designed to help readers understand what the Bible actually says and what it means…[each commentary] examines the text section by section, drawing out its main themes. It also comments on individual verses and deals with problems of interpretation. The aim throughout is to get at the true meaning of the Bible and to make its message plain to readers today.”



Mark (BNTC) by Morna Hooker


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Reviews and Accolades:

Tom Schreiner: recommended, “accessible to pastors”

Best for: pastors, teachers, scholars

Purpose: From the publisher: “Black’s New Testament Commentary has been hailed by both scholars and pastors for its insightful interpretations and reliable commentary.”



More Commentaries with Application Help for Pastors



Mark (St. Andrews) by R. C. Sproul


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Best for: Anyone

Purpose: From Dr. Sproul: The St. Andrews Expositional Commentary series “is a written record of my preaching labors amidst my beloved Sanford congregation. The dear saints who sit under my preaching encouraged me to give my sermons a broader hearing. To that end, the chapters that follow were adapted from a sermon series I preached at St. Andrews.”



Mark (Preaching the Word) by R. Kent Hughes


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Best for: pastors, educated laypeople

Purpose: From the publisher: “For years, Crossway’s Preaching the Word commentary series has helped pastors, preachers, and anyone who teaches God’s Word to better interpret and apply the message of the Bible. Under the careful editorial oversight of experienced pastor and best-selling author R. Kent Hughes, this series is known for its commitment to biblical authority, its pastoral tone and focus, and its overall accessibility.”



Mark (Teach the Text) by Grant R. Osborne


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Best for: pastors, educated laypeople

Purpose: From the publisher: The Teach the Text series utilizes “the best of biblical scholarship” and provides “the information a pastor needs to communicate the text effectively. By keeping the discussion of each carefully selected preaching unit to six pages of focused commentary, the volumes in this series allow pastors to quickly grasp the big idea and key themes of each passage of Scripture. The text and its meaning are made clear, and sections dedicated to effectively teaching and illustrating the text help pastors prepare to preach.”



Mark (Interpretation) by Lamar Williamson Jr.


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Best for: pastors, educated laypeople

Purpose: From the publisher: “This series of commentaries offers an interpretation of the books of the Bible. It is designed to meet the need of students, teachers, ministers, and priests for a contemporary expository commentary. These volumes will not replace the historical critical commentary or homiletical aids to preaching. The purpose of this series is rather to provide a third kind of resource, a commentary which presents the integrated result of historical and theological work with the biblical text.”



Mark (For Everyone) by N. T. Wright


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Best for: Anyone

Purpose: From the publisher: “N.T. ‘Tom’ Wright has undertaken a tremendous task: to provide guides to all the books of the New Testament, and to include in them his own translation of the entire text. Each short passage is followed by a highly readable discussion, with background information, useful explanations and suggestions, and thoughts as to how the text can be relevant to our lives today. A glossary is included at the end of each volume.”



Mark (CCEC) by Daniel L. Akin


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Best for: Anyone

Purpose: From the publisher: This series “takes a Christ-centered approach to expositing each book of the Bible. Rather than a verse-by-verse approach, the authors have crafted chapters that explain and apply key passages in their assigned Bible books. Readers will learn to see Christ in all aspects of Scripture, and they will be encouraged by the devotional nature of each exposition presented as sermons and divided into chapters that conclude with a “Reflect and Discuss” section, making this series ideal for small group study, personal devotion, and even sermon preparation. It’s not academic but rather presents an easy reading, practical and friendly commentary.”



More Verse-by-Verse Commentaries



Mark (NAC) by James A. Brooks


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Best for: pastors, educated laypeople

Purpose: From the publisher: “The New American Commentary is introduced to bridge the twentieth and twenty-first centuries. This new series has been designed primarily to enable pastors, teachers, and students to read the Bible with clarity and proclaim it with power.”



Mark (CCSS) by Mary Healey


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Best for: pastors, educated laypeople

Purpose: From the publisher: “Supported by leading Catholic scholars as well as popular Bible teachers, the series offers a unique level of commentary for Catholic students of the Bible. Its attractive packaging and accessible writing style make it a series to own–and to read! Drawn from the best of contemporary scholarship, series volumes are keyed to the liturgical year and include an index of pastoral subjects.”



Mark (Belief) by William C. Placher


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Best for: pastors, educated laypeople

Purpose: From the publisher: “Building on a wide range of sources from biblical studies, the history of theology, the church’s liturgical and musical traditions, contemporary culture, and the Christian tradition, noted scholars focus less on traditional historical and literary angles in favor of a theologically focused commentary that considers the contemporary relevance of the texts. This series is an invaluable resource for those who want to probe beyond the backgrounds and words of biblical texts to their deep theological and ethical meanings for the church today.”



Mark (ANTC) C. Clifton Black


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Best for: pastors, educated laypeople

Purpose: From the publisher: “The Abingdon New Testament Commentaries series offers compact, critical commentaries on the writings of the New Testament. These commentaries are written with special attention to the needs and interests of theology students, but they will also be useful for students in upper-level college or university settings, as well as for pastors and other church leaders.”



Mark (UBCS) Larry W. Hurtado


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Best for: pastors, educated laypeople

Purpose: From the publisher: “Each volume in the Understanding the Bible Commentary Series breaks down the barriers between the ancient and modern worlds so that the power and meaning of the biblical texts become transparent to contemporary readers. They present a careful section-by-section exposition of the biblical books with key terms and phrases highlighted and all Hebrew transliterated. Notes at the close of each chapter provide additional textual and technical comments for those who want to dig deeper.”



Technical and Critical Commentaries



Mark (Anchor) C.S. Mann


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Best for: pastors trained in the original languages, scholars

Purpose: From the publisher: “The Anchor Yale Bible Series, previously the Anchor Bible Series, is a renowned publishing program that for more than 50 years has produced books devoted to the latest scholarship on the Bible and biblical topics.” The series “vigorously pursues the goal of bringing to a wide audience the most important new ideas, the latest research findings, and the clearest possible analysis of the Bible.”



Mark (NTL) by Eugene Boring


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Best for: pastors trained in the original languages, scholars

Purpose: From the publisher: “The New Testament Library series offers authoritative commentary on every book and major aspect of the New Testament, providing fresh translations based on the best available ancient manuscripts, critical portrayals of the historical world in which the books were created, careful attention to their literary design, and a theologically perceptive exposition of the biblical text.”



Classic Christian Commentaries for Bible Study



Mark (two volumes; MNTC) by John MacArthur Jr.


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Best for: Anyone

Purpose: From the publisher: “If you’re familiar with John MacArthur’s in-depth Bible teaching, you have an idea of what you’ll find in The MacArthur New Testament Commentary. The commentary takes you deep into each passage, verse by verse—sometimes word by word. It’s like having a Bible teacher sitting next to you as you study Scripture.”