Loving our neighbours as ourselves: towards a radical discipleship hermeneutic. Mark 12:28–34

Author: Anne Magarey

Magarey, Anne, 2016 Loving our neighbours as ourselves: towards a radical discipleship hermeneutic. Mark 12:28–34 , Flinders University, School of Humanities and Creative Arts

Terms of Use: This electronic version is (or will be) made publicly available by Flinders University in accordance with its open access policy for student theses. Copyright in this thesis remains with the author. You may use this material for uses permitted under the Copyright Act 1968. If you are the owner of any included third party copyright material and/or you believe that any material has been made available without permission of the copyright owner please contact copyright@flinders.edu.au with the details.


There have been radical Christian disciples since the time of Jesus. Radical disciples, living in different contexts with their own issues, prioritise being faithful to Jesus as the revelation of God through lifestyle choices as well as spiritual practices. Radical disciples seek to be practical and true to the biblical texts, which often results in priorities that are counter-cultural and disturbing to the complacent, and they seek justice, particularly for the marginalised and oppressed. Radical disciples take on the roles of both disciple and prophet, and Jesus is central to all they do. Because exegetical and hermeneutical methods as well as the contribution of ideological perspectives are important to radical disciples both in interpreting biblical texts and in shaping the understanding of Jesus’ priorities, radical discipleship requires its own hermeneutic.

The Gospel of Mark is recognised by scholars as particularly relevant to discipleship. In Mark 12:28-34, Jesus is shown to articulate his priorities in a two-fold way: love of God, love of neighbour. This is known as the ‘Greatest Commandment’, and is a particularly relevant passage to analyse using a radical discipleship approach. The questions which this thesis addresses are, What are the key characteristics of a radical discipleship hermeneutic? What further insights does a radical discipleship hermeneutic bring to the interpretation of Mark 12:28-34? A short case study is then introduced which explores how a radical discipleship approach is currently being embodied in the movement called Love Makes a Way.

Keywords: radical discipleship, Love Makes A Way,

Subject: Theology thesis

Thesis type: Masters
Completed: 2016
School: School of Humanities and Creative Arts
Supervisor: Rev Dr Vicky Balabanski