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Mark 16:14-18, Jesus Commissions the Disciples

Go. Proclaim. Do.

"Go into all the world and proclaim the good news to the whole creation." Such a simple phrase, but packed full of meaning and implications! Let's unpack it a bit.

"Go into all the world..." When people ask me what exotic places I've seen and where outside the US I've traveled, all I can say is that I went to Canada twice. And Tijuana, but that doesn't really count. I'm not in a position to travel outside the US much. I'm a bit of a home body anyway, so traveling outside the Twin Cities is kind of a big trip for me. So how, then, will I "go into all the world..." to proclaim the news of Christ?! Simple, really. This isn't a directive for individuals. It's a command for all Christians collectively to go to the corners of the world where they have influence and reach. If we all did our part in our part of the world, the message will spread everywhere eventually. But if we all assume someone else is going to do it, the message is squelched. So go... to your part of the world, if that's all you can reach. 

"...proclaim the good news..." Here's what it doesn't say. "Debate your point until you win." "Tell the other their opposing viewpoint is wrong." "Proclaim the good news, but put on it conditions and rules until it becomes bad news." Here's what it does say. "Share your story." "Listen to the stories of others and lift up how you see God working in their lives." (Even when their understanding of God is vastly different from yours.) "Make the good news good -- we worship a God of love, peace, and justice." 

"...to the whole creation.." How will the whole creation hear the message? The endangered species in the rainforest don't care what you have to say. But they will experience the good news of Christ when you make purchasing decisions with the care of the earth in mind. For people imprisoned or enslaved, your words of freedom fall flat unless they are backed by efforts to improve the social structure and fight to end human trafficking. Again, you as an individual can't solve the entire world's problems by yourself. You can't take on every cause. But you can pour time and energy into the cause that speaks to you, and give it everything you've got.

Go. Proclaim. Do. How will you show up for Jesus' commission for you?

Narrative Lectionary Text: Mark 16:14-18

Later he appeared to the eleven themselves as they were sitting at the table; and he upbraided them for their lack of faith and stubbornness, because they had not believed those who saw him after he had risen. And he said to them, “Go into all the world and proclaim the good news to the whole creation. The one who believes and is baptized will be saved; but the one who does not believe will be condemned. And these signs will accompany those who believe: by using my name they will cast out demons; they will speak in new tongues; they will pick up snakes in their hands, and if they drink any deadly thing, it will not hurt them; they will lay their hands on the sick, and they will recover.”

Earlier Event: August 14
Revelation 1:1-8, Introduction
Later Event: August 15
Revelation 1:9-20, A Vision of Christ