We have come to what is at the same time an end and a beginning. It is an end in that the Resurrection brings to a close the earthly, chronological history of Jesus Christ, Son of Mary and Son of God.
But it is also a beginning. And it is the beginning of two things: Jesus’s heavenly and transcendent history, and the beginning of the Church. Paradoxically, they are the same thing!
Jesus’s resurrection is recounted in vv. 1-8; He appears not to his Apostles but to the women who come to the tomb to fulfill the traditional anointing that is an act of Love for the deceased. He appears to Mary Magdalene in vv. 9-11; followed by two of his disciples in vv. 12-13. He then appears to the 12 (vv. 14-18), and Ascends into Heaven (vv. 19-20).
Keeping in mind what we have said about the constant movement of Jesus in Mark’s Gospel, it is no wonder that he ends the Gospel with Jesus commissioning the 12 to carry on his work. He now sets them in motion to carry on the work he had done. The 12 are now ministers of the Lord’s presence and power in the world. The 12 will circle the known world and will share their ministry with others until it passed down to our day, in our place. The Great Commission that brings to a close Mark’s Gospel is a beginning- and it is begun each day, in each one of us. “Go out into the whole world and proclaim the Gospel to every creature” (v. 15).
Point for Prayer
How does the Lord commission me to proclaim the Gospel? How deeply do I embrace this call to be His presence and power in my home; my workplace; my world?