20 May 2019

Welcome to Monday’s Podcast. My name is Tom Finnemore – I’m part of the team at STC and I have the honour of picking up the baton from my colleague Dave Saxton.
Today we’ll conclude our journey through Mark’s Gospel by reading Mark 16:1-20; today I’ll focus on verse 4-5:

But when they looked up, they saw that the stone, which was very large, had been rolled away. As they entered the tomb, they saw a young man dressed in a white robe sitting on the right side, and they were alarmed.


How do you react when things don’t go to plan?

I recently caught a train to London. I’d booked my train tickets a month beforehand. I got two singles as it was cheaper. The day before I travelled I thought I’ll check the times. To my horror I had a made a mistake. I had bought a ticket from Sheffield to London and then another one for the next day for Sheffield to London at the time & date I should have been returning home.

I freaked out. I read the small print and freaked out some more. It said they could only change the tickets to another day and the same journey i.e. Sheffield to London.  I emailed, I googled for help and got in touch via the website chat – it looked as though I wouldn’t be able to change my ticket. I prayed! Lord I don’t want to buy another ticket!

So I called trainline.com and spoke to a very kind man in Hyderabad who, after I explained my stupidity, very kindly changed my tickets as a goodwill gesture.  I was so very relieved and extremely thankful. God was so good and I was so thankful -and a little bit surprised too! I was like –wow Lord- you really sorted this out for me. Thank you!

And then I got thinking – why am I so surprised? Why do I react and freak out at stuff? Do I lack that much faith?

How about you?

What do you face today – this Monday? That dreaded performance management review? That boss at work that is on your back? Revision? Exams? Questions about what next? As you step into this day – how will you react to stuff that doesn’t go to plan? That broken boiler that you didn’t budget for or that sick child that means you have to juggle childcare to a million other things…

What do we do?

We ask ourselves – who is Jesus?

Throughout Mark’s gospel Jesus has told his followers that he will rise again – in fact he tells them five separate times that he will rise again.  It’s puzzling to me that even though he’s predicted it – promised and declared it, yet when it comes to it – they don’t believe him – to such an extent they turn up at his tomb to anoint his dead body only to be greeted by an Angel saying he’s risen.

What an incredible thing! I was overjoyed over my train tickets – a resurrection is off the scale.

Their view of Jesus has dramatically changed – the resurrection reveals the reality of his divinity and his awesome power.

When we experience something significant like this – like a story of provision – something does something for you totally out of the blue or God sorts your train tickets – it’s like the good news, the ‘evangelion’ of God, coming to bear on our hearts again. Alex Absalom (you’ll know his name from the Grow Project) says this in one of his books that we don’t just ‘convert’ to Jesus and then start the journey of discipleship. Every day the gospel appeals to our hearts – it reveals to us who Jesus really is – and it challenges the parts of our hearts – our mind, our will our emotions – that don’t totally yield to who Jesus really is.

Just as the disciples had to reconfigure the risen Jesus – had to repent of their lack of belief – so we, if we’re to grow this year, need to ask Jesus to reveal to our lives afresh where unbelief has taken root.

If you’re in a situation when you’re finding yourself freaking out – ask yourself – what does Jesus say about me right now? What does he say about this situation? And who do I say he is in this situation? And don’t forget to ask for His help!


Lord thank you that we can call on your name which is so powerful to bring change to situations that we face.

READING: Mark 16:1-20

When the Sabbath was over, Mary Magdalene, Mary the mother of James, and Salome bought spices so that they might go to anoint Jesus’ body. Very early on the first day of the week, just after sunrise, they were on their way to the tomb and they asked each other, ‘Who will roll the stone away from the entrance of the tomb?’

But when they looked up, they saw that the stone, which was very large, had been rolled away. As they entered the tomb, they saw a young man dressed in a white robe sitting on the right side, and they were alarmed.

‘Don’t be alarmed,’ he said. ‘You are looking for Jesus the Nazarene, who was crucified. He has risen! He is not here. See the place where they laid him. But go, tell his disciples and Peter, “He is going ahead of you into Galilee. There you will see him, just as he told you.”’

Trembling and bewildered, the women went out and fled from the tomb. They said nothing to anyone, because they were afraid.

[The earliest manuscripts and some other ancient witnesses do not have verses 9–20.]

When Jesus rose early on the first day of the week, he appeared first to Mary Magdalene, out of whom he had driven seven demons. She went and told those who had been with him and who were mourning and weeping. When they heard that Jesus was alive and that she had seen him, they did not believe it.

Afterwards Jesus appeared in a different form to two of them while they were walking in the country. These returned and reported it to the rest; but they did not believe them either.

Later Jesus appeared to the Eleven as they were eating; he rebuked them for their lack of faith and their stubborn refusal to believe those who had seen him after he had risen.

He said to them, ‘Go into all the world and preach the gospel to all creation. Whoever believes and is baptised will be saved, but whoever does not believe will be condemned. And these signs will accompany those who believe: in my name they will drive out demons; they will speak in new tongues; they will pick up snakes with their hands; and when they drink deadly poison, it will not hurt them at all; they will place their hands on people who are ill, and they will get well.’

After the Lord Jesus had spoken to them, he was taken up into heaven and he sat at the right hand of God. Then the disciples went out and preached everywhere, and the Lord worked with them and confirmed his word by the signs that accompanied it.