Join us today for an episode about the Easter Story...

Today's episode is focused on Mark 16: 1-8...

In today’s Spiritual Foundation Episode, I talk about Mark 16: 1-8.  I share how the Easter story shows us a path to looking for Jesus. I also share how the Jesus we are looking for may not always be the Jesus we find.

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Episode 1422: You Are Looking for Jesus

[00:00:00] Scott Maderer: Thanks for joining me on episode 1, 422 of the Inspired Stewardship Podcast.

[00:00:07] Tom Hermann: I'm Tom Herman. I challenge you to invest in yourself, invest in others, develop your influence, and impact the world by using your time, your talent, and your treasures to live out your calling. Having the ability to discover your unique God given purpose is key, and one way to be inspired to do that is to listen to this.

[00:00:24] The Inspired Stewardship Podcast with my friend, Scott Maderer.

[00:00:28] And

[00:00:36] Scott Maderer: we don't know effort that will be required. The struggle that will be required, not just by ourselves, but by others. It might be a lifetime of work and effort. It might be the twinkling of the eye, but in whatever moment, whenever that stone rolls away, Jesus will be there. Welcome and [00:01:00] thank you for joining us on the Inspired Stewardship Podcast.

[00:01:04] If you truly desire to become the person who God wants you to be, then you must learn to use your time, your talent and your treasures for your true calling. In the Inspired Stewardship Podcast, you will learn to invest in yourself, invest in others, and develop your influence so that you can impact the world.

[00:01:31] In today's Spiritual Foundation episode, I talk about Mark chapter 16 verses 1 through 8. I share how the Easter story shows us a path to looking for Jesus. I also share how the Jesus we are looking for may not always be the Jesus we find. Mark chapter 16 verses 1 through 8 says, When the Sabbath was over, Mary Magdalene and Mary, the mother of James, and Salome brought spices so that they might [00:02:00] go and anoint him.

[00:02:01] And very early on the first day of the week, when the sun had risen, they went to the tomb. They had been saying to one another, Who will roll away the stone for us from the entrance to the tomb? When they looked up, they saw that the stone, which was very large, had already been rolled back. As they entered the tomb, they saw a young man dressed in a white robe, sitting on the right side, and they were alarmed.

[00:02:24] But he said to them, Do not be alarmed. You are looking for Jesus of Nazareth, who was crucified. He has been raised. He is not here. Look, there is the place they laid him. But go, tell his disciples and Peter that he is going ahead of you to Galilee. There you will see him, just as he told you. So they went out and fled from the tomb, for terror and amazement had seized them, and they said nothing to anyone, for they were afraid.

[00:02:52] So the Easter story is one that is often familiar to many of us, and this version in [00:03:00] Mark is probably, at least by most scholars, assumed to be the earliest of the gospel Easter stories. And in fact, where we end it today, it's considered to be the first ending of this part of the gospel. There, there's other passages and verses that go after this that extend the story, but those were probably added later.

[00:03:24] If you think about Mark's story, there seems to be a question that isn't really a question, at the heart of that story. This messenger, this person dressed in white or angel dressed in white it's not really made 100 percent clear, says to the women, you are looking for Jesus. Notice that's actually made as a statement, not a question.

[00:03:51] It seems like an obvious thing, right? Of course they're there looking for Jesus. That's the tomb where Jesus was laid. Of [00:04:00] course that's what they would be doing. And we often come to Easter with that same sort of assumption. Of course, we're here looking for Jesus. But oftentimes, when we come looking for Jesus, we're distracted and paying attention to other things that are pulling us away from really looking for Jesus.

[00:04:21] In some ways, maybe we're looking for the wrong Jesus, or looking for Jesus in the wrong places. We often want a Jesus that's comfortably contained, defined, ordered, there in the tomb, defined by rules. One that we can break down and see in the fullness of Jesus and recognize fully. But the Resurrected One, the Resurrected Jesus, that often defies our attempts to nail him down.

[00:04:50] It defies our attempts to claim that we understand fully all that Jesus is intending for us and for others. We often want to [00:05:00] put ourselves in the place of Jesus and say that we understand him so fully that we are the owners. Of Jesus. But Jesus, the resurrected one, has broken free from the tomb. He's no longer contained.

[00:05:14] He's no longer held up by us. Think about the mindset of the women as they're making their way to the tomb that morning. They're going to serve. They're going to do their duty, what it is that they are to do because there was a death. These rituals of death were certain known automatic, somewhat unthinking.

[00:05:38] Which is probably good because if you've ever been faced with grief, you know that on the morning like that You're probably just barely capable of thinking or moving or going through the motions Maybe these women are coming here basically just like robots gathering the spices the oils the cloth Preparing for that [00:06:00] journey.

[00:06:01] Maybe they slept the night before maybe they stayed up all night staring at the walls crying softly to themselves, but still they're driven by a need to serve, to do something that makes sense during that senseless time. And so they set out together and yet also alone in their pain, in their silence.

[00:06:26] They walked there burdened by this weight that they can't even describe. And then someone looks up and says, the stone, and they stopped dead in their tracks. They stopped their march. Their way was blocked, but not by the stone. Instead, they were blocked by this feeling that their duty, their hope, the thing that the, they were there to do, that last moment of service, somehow [00:07:00] has been taken from them.

[00:07:03] They couldn't take that last look. The body. wasn't there. The body of that person that they had loved more than anyone wasn't there. The stone had been rolled away and somehow the body had been stolen. But who would do that? Who would roll away the stone?

[00:07:24] And

[00:07:24] Scott Maderer: I think when we think about the stone, we can think about not just the physical stones that come into our life, physical stones of illness, physical stones of relationship, but also all of those stones that bring us up, that move to tear us down more than they build us up.

[00:07:43] The things that, where we sit in judgment on each other, where we rip each other apart, where we have a job that's killing ourselves, living a lifestyle that's keeping us from living out our calling and doing what we really are meant to do. [00:08:00] Maybe we have feelings of fear, of contempt, of pride, of anger.

[00:08:08] Whatever it is, we have stones in our life that keep us from reaching Jesus. And the women were wondering in this moment who would roll away the stone and yet the stone was gone. Who is there that can roll away the stone in our life? They run forward. Now they look into the tomb. They went to look for Jesus because that is who could roll that stone away.

[00:08:42] That is who could allow them to perform the service. And instead, Jesus isn't there. He's not in a grave. He's not hanging around in the cemetery. He wasn't behind the stone. Instead, they find an angel. who asks them that [00:09:00] question that isn't really a question, it's a statement. You are looking for Jesus. And then Mark says now that they run away in terror and amazement.

[00:09:10] And again, that's the ending that Mark originally ended with. Later, the early church didn't like that ending. They gave us more comfortable certainty by adding verses that followed. But Mark leaves the story in a unfinished state. Because I think all of us have our story in an unfinished state. Mark was telling the story to people who knew that Jesus was alive, and yet he says here in the story they told no one.

[00:09:42] How then did the word get out? How then did the world hear that Jesus was alive? Jesus rolled away the stone. Jesus is the only one that can roll away the stones in our own life. That [00:10:00] silence from us isn't the final word. God and God's hope is the final word. We often think we've come looking for Jesus, but instead many of us are looking for those stones that are getting in our way.

[00:10:15] Sometimes that stone is a inadequate or unful picture of Jesus himself. Sometimes it's fears, it's limitations, it's judgment of others. But these are all distractions that are keeping us from a true encounter with the risen Christ. If we trust that stone will be rolled away, the risen Christ will be there to welcome us.

[00:10:40] And we don't know. The effort that will be required, the struggle that will be required, not just by ourselves, but by others. It might be a lifetime of work, an effort, it might be the twinkling of the eye. But in whatever moment, whenever that stone [00:11:00] rolls away, Jesus will be there. For he is risen.

[00:11:12] Thanks so much for listening to the Inspired Stewardship Podcast. As a subscriber and listener, we challenge you to not just sit back and passively listen, but act on what you've heard and find a way to live your calling. If you enjoyed this episode, do me a favor. Go over to facebook. com slash inspired stewardship.

[00:11:38] And like our Facebook page and mark it that you'd like to get notifications from us so that we can connect with you on Facebook and make sure that we're serving you to the best of our abilities with time and tips there. Until next time, invest your time. Your talent and your [00:12:00] treasures develop your influence and impact the world.

In today's episode, I talk with you about:

  • Mark 16: 1-8...  
  • How the Easter story shows us a path to looking for Jesus...
  • How the Jesus we are looking for may not always be the Jesus we find...
  • and more.....

But he said to them, "Do not be alarmed; you are looking for Jesus of Nazareth, who was crucified. He has been raised; he is not here. Look, there is the place they laid him. - Mark 16: 6

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About the Author Scott

Helping people to be better Stewards of God's gifts. Because Stewardship is about more than money.

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