Other endings of Mark as responses to Mark : an ideological-critical investigation into the longer and the shorter ending of Mark's Gospel
The Longer Ending and the Shorter Ending of Mark's Gospel are the ancient Markan readers' responses to Mark's Gospel. This leads us to the question of how the authors of these endings read their Mark's Gospel. These endings reflect the ideologies of their authors. The ideologies are related to the interests of the author or the authorial community (ideological primary group), and are embedded within the text. The Longer and the Shorter Ending were produced within a social context where the matter of apostolic authoritative leadership was a sensitive issue. A potential conflict is found in many contemporary texts from the NT and the extra- canonical texts, especially with regard to the apostolic authority of Mary Magdalene and Peter. Their struggles for apostolic authority are often found in the post-Easter narrative context. The assumed ideological primary community of the Longer Ending is Pro- Magdalene. It acknowledged Mary Magdalene as its authoritative leader who enjoyed apostolic authority especially over Peter. This community was interested in mission, and re-authenticated the mission of the Eleven. The LE provides a certain guideline for the qualification of leadership in the LE's community, which is the visual experience of the resurrected Jesus. The assumed ideological primary community of the Shorter Ending is Pro- Petrine. It was in favour of Peter, and suggested him as holding authoritative apostolic authority. This community wanted to clarify the resurrection of Jesus, and emended the empty tomb narrative of Mark's Gospel. It was also interested in mission, and the authority of disciples, especially that of Peter, in their performing mission tasks is highlighted in the Shorter Ending.