YouTuber John Stapleton continues with the Gospel of Mark 15 – Courage.
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Jesus’ followers are often afraid with very little answers. Based on Mark 15:40 – 16:8.
1). The Women at the Cross (Mark 15:40-41, 47)
Once again, our outline follows another Markan sandwich. Jesus had just suffered and died. Some distance from the cross were some women who had followed him. They have no left Jesus, but they are a safe distance away. This act displays their faith and their fear.
- When the centurion, who stood facing him, saw that in this way he breathed his last, he said, “Truly this man was the Son of God!” (verse 39)
- Mary Magdalene and Mary the mother of Joses saw where he was laid. (verse 47)
2). Joseph of Arimathea (Mark 15:42-47)
Joseph was a religious leader who didn’t agree with killing Jesus (Luke 23:51), and was “a respected member of the council, who was also himself looking for the kingdom of God, took courage and went to Pilate and asked for the body of Jesus” (15:43). After he obtained the body, he buried it, and the aforementioned women are there watching where his body was laid.
Connecting the kingdom of God with the death of Jesus
- There were also women looking on from a distance. (verse 40)
- Joseph of Arimathea, a respected member of the council, who was also himself looking for the kingdom of God. (verse 43)
Joseph “took courage” (verse 43). The Greek word tolmao indicates daring to do something extremely difficult.
3). The Women at the Empty Tomb (Mark 16:1-8)
What I want to point out here is that when the women saw the empty tomb, “they were alarmed” (16:5). The angels tell them not to be alarmed, but to believe the promise Jesus had left them with: “He is going before you into Galilee. There you will see him, just as he told you” (16:7).
Mark’s gospel ends abruptly. It’s so awkward that later scribes wrote an extension to this gospel (vv 9-20). It’s also interesting that since Mark was the first gospel to be written, the other gospels fill in more detail about the resurrection, especially Luke and John.
Mark purposefully ends the story here on the note of fear, a theme that’s been laced throughout this gospel. They don’t see Jesus but are left with a promise. The challenge to the women and to us who read is, will we still believe Jesus even though we are confused about some things?
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