Does Mark 16 Belong In The Bible?

Q. I have heard that Mark 16:9-20 does not belong in the Bible. When I looked this up on the internet, it would appear that many people hold to that idea also but go on to say that the fact that it appears in most Bibles is no problem as it does not affect and doctrinal beliefs. Now, I’m no scholar nor to I even remotely have a handle on history but I would think that this would cause a problem.

Now, don’t get me wrong, I believe in God and his son Jesus and what he did on the cross, however, this gives me an uneasy feeling. The Bible is supposed to be inspired by God and yet there are verses placed in that were not in the original transcripts to begin with. So, where did they come from? How did they get there? Why was this allowed?

A. Here’s the issue as I see it. There’s some good circumstantial evidence that Mark 16:9-20 was not originally part of the Gospel of Mark. The same can be said of John 7:53-8:11 (which some scholars say should really be at the end of Luke 21). But that’s not the same as saying these passages don’t belong in the Bible.

The main arguments against Mark 16:9-20 are related to vocabulary and writing style. While some of the theological content is different from the rest of Mark’s gospel, it isn’t incompatible with either orthodox beliefs or the other Gospels. Mark 16:9-20 first appeared early in the 2nd Century and seems for the most part to be a compilation of verses from Matt. 28, Luke 24 and John 20. The intent was to give Mark a proper ending since without these verses it appears unfinished.

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