I. Resurrection ALWAYS start with DEATH. (15:42-16:1)
A. SOMETHING we’d like to FORGET. (Jer. 29-45)
B. A SOLEMN process of HONOURING. (15:42-16:1)
C. A POWERFUL, yet neglected, METAPHOR. (v.46; I Cor. 12:27)
Resurrection Sunday is a day of celebration! We come out of this dark and reflective season of Lent to be thankful that death has been swallowed up in life. We’d like to leave the darkness behind fully…but it’s still a reality that we live within.
1. Kid’s Question: Why do you think the resurrection of Jesus is important?
2. What was your reaction to Paul’s assertion that we are all the body of Christ in relation to how we would have honoured Jesus physical body prior to burial? How does it change the way you look at others, if it does?
II. Not the ENDING you would EXPECT. (16:1-8)
A. An UNSETTLING FOOTNOTE. (16:9-20)
B. RISEN and not here, but WHERE? (v.2-6)
C. Why END the STORY like this? (v.6-8)
D. Mark LEAVES the listener HANGING. (Mark 1:1)
The ending of Mark is a bit of a challenge for those who like everything clear and concise. It’s a great example of how the Bible doesn’t tend to conform to what we think it should be and how it should be laid out. Given Mark’s approach to the life of Jesus I think he might actually like that.
3. What do you think about Mark 16:9-20? Does it make you uncomfortable that it’s there in the text?
4. If, as Jeff thinks, Mark ends with 16:8, does that seem weird to you? Is the Bible written to make sure you get all the details or to challenge and engage you fully? Or both?
5. When have you been tempted to explain away a situation that God might have left “hanging”? How did that turn out for you? Is it okay to be left “unfinished”?
III. RESPONDING to the RESURRECTION. (16:8)
A. Trust that OBEDIENCE will lead to SIGHT. (16:7; Jn 7:17; I Jn 3:2-3)
B. RECOGNIZE the body of CHRIST. (15:42-16:1; I Cor. 11:29, 12:27)
1. Resurrection life STARTS with DEATH. (15:37; Mk. 8:34-35; Gal. 2:20)
2. Resurrection life UNITES us. (Eph. 4:12-13; 1 Cor. 12:27; Jn 17:20-23)
3. Resurrection life EMPOWERS us. (Mt. 28:18-20; Acts 1:8; Gal. 2:20)
4. Resurrection life INVITES OTHERS. (16:7; 2 Cor. 5:14-21)
So the women respond (at least temporarily) in fear and confusion. It’s as if Mark is asking the question, “What about you?” That really is the question of the day. How do we respond to the message of life even while we live in a world permeated by death?
6. Where do you find it hard to “obey” when you can’t “see”? Why is that?
7. Where do you need to rethink how you are interacting with “the body of Christ”?
8. Which of the aspects of “resurrection life” impacts you the most personally at this moment and why?