Honoring The Final Words Of The King – Mark 15-16

Mark 15-16

The story of the Crucifixion is a tough one. It’s gut wrenching what Jesus suffered at the hands of His captors. He endured savagery, mockery, and rejection. He was brutalized and spit upon. What He withstood we can barely comprehend. And He did so willingly. At any time more than twelve legions of angels were ready to rescue the Lord at a moments notice, (Matt. 26:53), yet Jesus bore His Cross to the end. He bore it for our salvation and to see the will of God done.

In the books of the Old Testament we’re told that a blood sacrifice was needed to atone for sin. And God’s plan from the beginning was to reconcile us to Him through the blood of Christ. Before the world was formed, before Adam took his first breath, God knew how man would fall. Because of this, in His infinite love and wisdom, He predetermined for His Son to provide the ultimate sacrifice so that we could have eternal life. “The Lamb was slain from the creation of the world“(Rev. 13:8)

Never once did Jesus stray from accomplishing what God commissioned Him to do. He followed God’s plan to the letter no matter the cost to Himself. And before He ascended to the right hand of the Father, Jesus passed down this same commission not only to the disciples, but to us as well. “Go into all the world and preach the gospel to all creation.” (vs. 16:15)

Although at times sharing the message of Jesus can seem like a daunting task, many are the reasons as to why we should eagerly spread the gospel to the world around us, and here are but a few.

Obedience– In John 20:21 Jesus says, “As the Father has sent Me, I also send you.” We are Jesus’ ambassadors on earth. (2 Cor. 5:19-29) He displayed perfect obedience and as His followers, we need to follow His example. Hebrews 5:9 tells us that Jesus is the source of eternal salvation to all who obey Him. And although we know that we are not saved through obedience, our obedience to Him is proof of our salvation.

Love- In Romans 5:8 Paul says, “God demonstrates His own love toward us, in that while we were yet sinners, Christ died for us.” Because of His abounding love, Jesus gave His life so ours would be spared. A love He extends to all. And a love we are called to imitate. In 1 Cor. 11:1, again Paul, who out of his love for God and for the people did nothing for his own gain but for the salvation of others counsels, “Imitate me, just as I also imitate Christ”.

Mercy- In 1 Peter 1:3 Peter says, “Blessed be the God and Father of our Lord Jesus Christ who according to His great mercy has caused us to be born again to a living hope through the resurrection of Jesus Christ from the dead.” Because of the grace and mercy of God, We are provided a path to eternal life. We are to extend that same mercy to those who are perishing. Jude 1:22-23 tells us, “And have mercy on some, who are doubting; save others, snatching them out of the fire; and on some have mercy with fear, hating even the garment polluted by the flesh.” Knowing that each soul saved brings great joy to God, (Luke 5:10) how wonderful it is to be able to spread the Good News of His everlasting mercy!

The mission of saving souls is a serious one. It was the reason Jesus, “emptied Himself, taking the form of a bond-servant, and being made in the likeness of men.” (Phil. 2:7) His entire ministry was dedicated to evangelizing the world, and when He ascended into heaven His work on earth ended and ours began. Now it is up to us to go out throughout the lands and preach the gospel of Jesus Christ. And, like the women visiting His tomb who received the good news of His resurrection, what a privilege it is to be able to honor the final words of the King and joyfully shout to all who will hear, “He has risen!” (vs. 16:6)

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