Mark for Teenagers: How Jesus Changes Everything

John Perritt
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With this twelve-week accessible study for young adults, Mark for Teenagers: How Jesus Changes Everything, John Perritt points readers toward a better love and appreciation for their compassionate savior and suffering servant.

Created for one-to-one discipleship, small group, or large settings, this guide is theologically rich in a time when biblical illiteracy is growing among Christians. Rather than a message of moralism, Mark introduces students to Jesus: the lover of the least and the hero of heroes.

Perritt outlines many helpful questions paired with Scripture readings for personal reflection or group discussion. Through in-depth examination of the book of Mark, article readings, and applicable exercises, students experience the compassion and authority of Christ.

He helps young adults ask difficult questions: Why was Jesus angry in the book of Mark? How does Peter's denial of Jesus still fit into God's perfect plan? What does it mean that even Jesus begs his Father to allow suffering to be removed from him?

By helping students walk away with a better understanding of the themes in the gospel of Mark, Perritt offers them a better understanding of the man, Jesus Christ, who is the gospel—the one who changes everything.


John Perritt, MDiv, DMin, is the Director of Resources for Reformed Youth Ministries and serves as the host of The Local Youth Worker podcast for RYM. He is the author of Your Days Are Numbered, What Would Judas Do?, and Time Out! The Gift or God of Youth Sports. He and his wife, Ashleigh, live in Ridgeland, MS, with their five children.

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"The gospel changes everything. But the gospel must be communicated fully and clearly to our students in order to facilitate and nurture their spiritual growth. In a day and age when too much youth ministry is marked by dumbing down, John Perritt sets the bar high, offering us a teaching tool to take students deep into the Word in ways that will lead to clear application and spiritual depth.”
Walt Mueller, Founder, Center for Parent/Youth Understanding; author

"I am so thankful for John Perritt's heart and art, captured in his new book, Mark: How Jesus Changes Everything. As a former youth pastor, I find it refreshing (and rare) to find discipleship materials that honor the Scriptures and clearly communicate the gospel of God's grace, and contextualize those two grand realities for the culture of today's students. John's study targets the heads, hearts, and hands of our students, calling them into a lifestyle of gospel transformation as they engage with the book of Mark."
Scotty Smith, Pastor Emeritus, Christ Community Church, Franklin, TN; teacher in residence, West End Community Church, Nashville, TN

"Parents, small-group leaders, youth pastors, and all those who minister to students can easily be intimidated when it comes to helping teenagers understand the Word of God. The Gospel-Centered Life for Students series is practical tool that can be used in large groups, small groups, or even personal study. Instead of focusing on moralism, this series aims precisely at the good news of the gospel, displayed in the person of Christ. In a day and age where students carry more stress than ever before, these pages remind the readers of the undeserved, unmatched, and unbelievable grace of God."
Drew Hill, Pastor; Young Life staff; author of Alongside: Loving Teenagers with the Gospel

"Nothing is more vital to our intimacy with Christ than spending time with him in his Word. But a lot of Bible studies stop short and only deal with concepts and ideas and never really speak to our hearts. That's why I'm so excited about this series. Each author is writing about the unique gospel insights he or she has gained from Scripture and has created a small-group study that will help students actually encounter Christ and be changed by the power of his grace. This has been the heartbeat of Serge from our very beginning. I'm thrilled that we are now making this type of teaching more widely available to others. God has used this material powerfully in my life, marriage, and ministry, and that is my prayer for you as well."
Bob Osborne, Executive Director, Serge

"This study is designed to engage students in Scripture so they can grow in their knowledge of the Word of God and deepen their relationship with the God of the Word. It beautifully facilitates personal study, life application, and group discussion of God’s Word. This will be a great tool and resource for our student ministry curriculum!"
Jay Shaw, Youth Pastor, Briarwood Presbyterian Church

"I was a former youth pastor and RUF campus minister, and Mark: How Jesus Changes Everything is great discipleship material. Perritt creates thoughtful interaction with the biblical text concerning Christ's kingdom and mission. We need resources like this to shape our lives with others in the community of the Cross. This study of Mark will let parents, youth leaders, and pastors breathe sighs of relief while serving the next generation of the church."
Clint Wilcke, Catalyst Director, The Mid-South Church Planting Network

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4 Reviews

  • 5
    The Life of Jesus studied through the book of Mark

    Posted by Lori H on 11 25 2019

    This study of the book of Mark is set up to be utilized as a small group study or a Bible class. It includes an introduction, 12 lessons, and Leader’s Notes. Each lesson is broken into 3 parts: introduction, article, and exercises. The Leader’s Notes are set up by lesson, as well. Each lesson deals with a section of the book of Mark and the study is structured somewhat like the book: the first 10 chapters of the book of Mark cover the majority of Jesus’ ministry while the last 6 books cover just one week, the last week, of Jesus’ life and ministry. The study is somewhat the same in that the first 5 lessons cover the first 10 chapters of the book. The remainder of the lessons cover the final 6 chapters and the final week of Jesus’ life. The mirroring of the book of Mark in the study guide is really interesting and emphasizes what it should – the salvation and Jesus’ sacrifice. I really enjoyed this study. I worked on it in a more compact time frame than it is necessarily designed for since I was working through it on my own. I worked on one lesson per day, working through the book in about 2 weeks. I like that the student is directed to read from the Bible first, not relying on the author’s perspective of the Bible reading for instruction. The Bible comes first and that is so important. The focus throughout the study is on Jesus, his life and ministry. It is not on the thoughts of the writer. I also really appreciated just how personal the exercises and discussions are made. They are not discussions that can be answered with a “Bible” answer and then you move on. The exercises are hard to skip over or gloss over for the very reason that they are personal application. You have to actually think about your life and Jesus’ role in it. It is deeply personal and that is such a refreshing thing to get in a Bible study. I highly recommend this study. It gets you into God’s word, focused on Jesus and what He did for me and you.

  • 4
    A Gospel-Grasping Study for Students

    Posted by Theron St. John on 08 26 2019

    The most important person you can introduce young people to is not the most famous musical artist or the most talented sports player. The most important person you can introduce young people to is Jesus Christ. But, in order to know Jesus Christ, you need to know His Word. In His Word, Jesus is introduced and His life is most detailed in the Gospel accounts. When you study those accounts, you begin to grasp the gospel of Jesus Christ. These realities are what drive Mark: How Jesus Changes Everything, a new study by John Perritt in “The Gospel-Centered Life for Students” series. The Structure of the Study This study is structured over the length of 12 lessons, each opening with a big idea along with a Bible conversation, article and discussion, exercise, and wrap-up with prayer. The study mentions up front the importance of reminding Christians of the gospel from a book classified as a Gospel. It does a solid job showing the importance of seeing how Jesus changes everything by the life He lived, through the death He died, and in the fact He has risen from dead. In each lesson, John Perritt does a terrific job of pulling out the main idea of the Scripture passage while also showing how it fits within the flow of Mark’s Gospel. The exercises in each lesson are practical and will provide concrete applications for middle and high school students. More Attention Warranted Yet, while the main idea in each lesson fits the context, two particular passages warranted more attention. The first passage, Mark 8:34-38, is one of the more referenced texts in Mark by pastors and Bible teachers. This is for good reason as it seems to be placed in a critical spot in the book. More detail could have been given to those verses. Aside from that minor critique, the greatest attention warranted but neglected in this study was Mark 16:9-20 (a passage not in the earliest manuscripts, which Bibles do note). To be fair, the author does mention it in the leader’s guide. The problem is he does not go into much detail and little is said of it out of that. Because students could possibly have questions on a passage about this note in the concluding verses of Mark, more guidance on how to respond would have been fitting. Introducing Students to Jesus Mark: How Jesus Changes Everything by John Perritt is a Bible study to equip students to understand the gospel of Jesus Christ through His life, death, and resurrection as accounted for in the Gospel according to Mark. With the Bible conversations and exercises, the study is designed for groups. The last few pages of the study are devoted to a leader’s guide. If you are a youth pastor looking to walk your youth, particularly ages 14-18, through passages of Scripture in order to introduce them to Jesus, then you may want to take a look at this latest addition in “The Gospel-Centered Life for Students”. I received this book from New Growth Press in exchange for this review. I was not required to write a positive review. The opinions I have expressed are my own and are my honest review of the book.

  • 4
    Adresses some good topics for teens

    Posted by Joan Nienhuis on 08 25 2019

    This workbook is a good addition to a series of Bible studies for young people. It is a twelve week study exploring themes from the gospel of Mark such as being understood and loved by Jesus, evil, faith, compassion, opposition to the Christian faith, the future, and more. There is very little homework assigned between meetings, generally reading a chapter or two in Mark. That makes this a good study for students who don't have much time for extra study. There are great leader's notes making this a good study to be led by someone new to leading groups. There are suggested times given for meeting activities, such as reading material and discussing questions. A teen could use this book to confidently begin and lead the Bible study. It could be done as a one-to-one discipleship experience or in a small group setting. I appreciated the way this study developed. It explored some issues that might be troubling to young people, such as Jesus' anger. It helps participants recognize the major elements of the gospel of Mark as well as getting to know Jesus better. I received a complimentary egalley of this book from the publisher. My comments are an independent and honest review.

  • 5

    Posted by Laura V. Hilton on 07 21 2019

    MARK: HOW JESUS CHANGES EVERYTHING by John Perritt is a great Bible study for small groups. You read a chapter or two of Mark each week before the gathering, then discuss it. The book includes: - Big Idea - a summary of the main point of the lesson - Bible Conversation - questions to discuss - Article - the teaching section of the lesson - Discussion - questions to help students apply the teaching to their own lives - Exercise - a section students complete individually - Wrap-up and Prayer - encourages student to pray since transformation happens only through God's Word in them The book has leader's guides so if you are the leader you know how to direct the group. Great for small groups, Bible study groups, a Sunday school class and more. This is NOT a comprehensive study on Mark, but rather more focused on the Christian's spiritual amnesia and how we so quickly forget that we are loved by God and accepted in the beloved. I was given a copy free. All opinions are my own.

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