Was The Gospel of Mark written for a Gentile audience?
The author translates semitic phrases for readers
The author of Mark translates semitic phrases into Greek for the readers. This is relevant because it is unlikely that Mark would bother doing this if a significant portion of his readership alreadys poke the language. Notable examples are:
Mk 5:41 -- “Talitha kum”1 Mk 7:11 -- “Corban”2 Mk 7:34 -- “Ephphatha”3 Mk 15:22 -- “Golgotha”4 Mk 15:34 -- “Eloi, Eloi, lama sabachthani?”5
- Mark 5:41 - He said to her, “Talitha kum!” (which translated means, “Little girl, I say to you, get up!”).
- Mark 7:11 -- whatever I have that would help you is Corban (that is to say, given to God),
- Mark 7:34 -- He said to him, “Ephphatha!” that is, “Be opened!”
- Mark 15:22 -- the place Golgotha, which is translated, Place of a Skull.
- Mark 15:34 -- “Eloi, Eloi, lama sabachthani?” which is translated, “My God, My God, why have You forsaken Me?”
The author explains Jewish customs to readers
Mark 7:3-4 -- (For the Pharisees and all the Jews do not eat unless they carefully wash their hands, thus observing the traditions of the elders; and when they come from the market place, they do not eat unless they cleanse themselves; and there are many other things which they have received in order to observe, such as the washing of cups and pitchers and copper pots.) Mk 12:18 -- Some Sadducees (who say that there is no resurrection) Mk 14:12 -- On the first day of Unleavened Bread, when the Passover lamb was being sacrificed,
The author uses Roman time (not Hebrew time)
Mark 6:48 -- at about the fourth watch of the night He came to them, Mark 13:35 -- whether in the evening, at midnight, or when the rooster crows, or in the morning