In the last years a new consensus has arisen in textual critical circles that favors the omission of 'Son of God' from the prologue of Mark’s gospel.
The new angle by which I want to approach this problem is to investigate its significance for Markan Christology. I will argue that the shorter Markan prologue, 'The beginning of the gospel of Jesus Christ' does not sufficiently capture Mark’s theology of the person of Jesus. The paper includes two sections, the first discussing Markan Christology and the second evaluating the textual evidence. In the Christological section I first challenge the assertion that Peter’s confession of Jesus’ Messiahship (8:27-30) is the turning point of the Gospel of Mark. Then I demonstrate that an additional title like suffering Son of Man or Son of God is necessary to adequately capture Mark’s Christology. Finally, I argue that Matthew and John have similarly positioned crucial Christological titles in the prologues of their gospels. In the textual critical section I provide evidence for the inclusion of 'Son of God' at Mk. 1:1 and argue that the omission of this title in a few manuscripts must have occurred through periblepsis occasioned by homoioteleuton.
On the basis of observations to the syntactical structure and the literary style of Mk 1:1-15 as well as to the literary genre of the Markan Gospel, this paper questions those concepts of subdividing Mk 1 according to which Mk 1:1-13/15 is classified as a 'Markan prologue'. It is argued instead, that already Mk 1:4 opens up the Gospel narration and that only Mk 1:1-3 has to be regarded as a literary unity: Mk 1:1-3, however, is in no case part of a 'Markan prologue' or a 'prologue' in itself. These verses are rather more to be understood as a prooemium to the overall prose-text of the Gospel narrative, consisting of a 'Buchüberschrift'/title (1:1) and an opening introductory close (1:2-3).