v 15. And then he told them, “Go into all the world and preach the Good News to everyone.”
So what do you think about Jesus? An interesting person – of course. But how much more than that He is! He commands respect – of course. But much, much more than that too. Has He claimed your love and allegiance? If so, then commit yourself to following Him, whatever the cost.
These first disciples soon discovered the cost of following Jesus. We don’t get very far in the Book of Acts to find the first martyrs. Not only in Acts 7:56 do we find Stephen dying for announcing his faith in Jesus, but by Act 12 we discover John’s brother, James, meeting the same fate. ‘About that time King Herod Agrippabegan to persecute some believers in the church. He had the apostle James (John’s brother) killed with a sword. ‘
These men, and many others since, including women, have been determined to obey this last command of Jesus. They have set out to announce the good news, the Gospel, throughout the world.
This book, which we call the Gospel of Mark, begins with these words in the very first verse: ‘This is the Good News about Jesus the Messiah, the Son of God. ‘ It is the story of this unique Man, Jesus, not only bringing good news about forgiveness and acceptance by God, but also about the awesome price that Jesus paid to make it all possible. You will not be surprised therefore to find the book ending with a command to go and announce all this to a needy world, but also confirmation that it happened. ‘ And the disciples went everywhere and preached, and the Lord worked through them, confirming what they said by many miraculous signs. ‘ (v 20)
Our deeply divided and often unhappy world still needs to hear this Good News, and God goes on inviting women and men to become messengers who will tell the same story as Mark does, and back it up by tales of how God has been at work in their own lives.
This is not the work of a few special, trained people; it is for all who have themselves heard and responded in faith to the call to follow Jesus.
Maybe God is calling you this Easter time to be one of those who continue to announce to the world that Jesus is alive and offering hope to all who accept Him as Saviour.
Will you join the band of followers who have given themselves to announcing the Good News of Jesus – a Man like no other – whom the world needs to know!