DOES MARK 16:9-20 BELONG IN THE BIBLE?
by Shawn Brasseaux
In his eponymous study Bible published over a century ago, Dr. C. I. Scofield attached the following footnote to Mark 16:9: “The passage from verse 9 to the end is not found in the two most ancient manuscripts, the Sinaitic and Vatican, and others have it with partial omissions and variations. But it is quoted by Irenaeus and Hippolytus in the second or third century.” What kind of an annotation is this?! Well, honestly, it is the type of gloss that has bothered dispensationalists who have used the Scofield Study Bible for more than 100 years! Does Mark 16:9-20 actually belong in the Holy Bible? Is it Mark’s original inspired ending, or simply a later addition? Although we will always be indebted to Dr. Scofield for his dispensational insight, he was still just a human like all of us, and he had his theological blind spots. We want to vehemently confess this note was one of them—one we should clarify. Our goal in this treatise is to study the Scriptures as well as explore church history, that we may establish and weigh the evidence of the pertinent arguments for and against Mark 16:9-20, and ultimately establish a sound conclusion.
Although a highly technical study, the information contained herein is invaluable and worthy of our attention. Friend, if you have an open heart and mind, a sincere desire to know the truth concerning this textual matter, you will know it (John 7:17)! Ask the Holy Spirit to edify, encourage, and enlighten you as you progress through this study. While this author does not agree with everyone he will cite here, he considers this data vital to the reader’s understanding of how Satan’s evil world system operates. The Bible student will come to realize the ubiquitous doubt, confusion, heresy, and apostasy that have long plagued the Church the Body of Christ. Most importantly, the reader will understand how to avoid such spiritual ruin. Requesting your undivided attention in this, our special-edition Bible Q&A article #825, the author has made every attempt to present the truth as plainly and simply as possible, that sound Bible doctrine be advanced and the Lord Jesus Christ thereby glorified. Are you ready? Here we go!