Here's this week's Bible study blog entry for i.ucc:
The young man dressed in a white robe said, “Do not be alarmed”
The women who were at the tomb reacted by fleeing in terror and amazement: “they were afraid.”
The Gospel of Mark, (Our Easter reading is Mark 16:1-8) from the earliest and most reliable manuscripts, ends right there. No understanding of what has happened. No appearance of Jesus to the disciples. No ascension into heaven. No promise or great commission. It ends with fear. Other endings to Mark, from later manuscripts, wrap up things a little better. Jesus appears to many, commissions the disciples and then ascends into heaven. It follows the other three gospels more closely.
But this ending -- this ending without closure -- reflects well what the earliest followers of Jesus spoke of and wrote down. They didn't know what really had happened and they didn't know what any of it meant.
And they still followed Jesus.
Following Jesus isn't about knowing all the details or understanding the resurrection completely or even at all. It's about the life Jesus offers. It's about the two greatest commandments. It's about loving God with all that we are and loving our neighbor as ourself.
Jesus is risen! And whether we know that, get that, or even believe that, we are God's precious ones. Everyone is precious and loved by God -- no exceptions.
The instructions: Go and tell
The reaction: fleeing in fear
The story of God’s people continues
God creates – we mess up – God revives – we mess up – God forgives – we mess up –
It seems we never stop doing what we do.
God never stops what God does.