Friday, February 4, 2011

Matthew 28 - Come and See, Go and Tell

I am struck that the words of the angel given to Mary and the other women - "Come and see" that he is risen, and "go and tell" the others - is a fitting conclusion to Matthew. I know that the Great Commission is the real culmination, but there is something simple and direct about the angel's words for all of us. We, like Mary and Joseph and Zechariah, need to heed the angel, but unlike those "B.C." figures, we have the rock-solid eyeball evidence of the empty tomb and the Risen Christ.  "Come and see." And for those who have, the message must be shared with those who haven't - yet: "Go and tell."

February will be the Month of Mark. I've been thinking about the Jesus I have met in Matthew this month. I see an Annointed One drawing people into a new Kingdom of God. The old paradigm, the old covenant that Israel had so manifestly failed to obey, lay in tatters. The virgin bride of Israel had gone astray, and her leaders were in fierce denial aka willful blindness. In the fullness of time, it was time for a new Kingdom, born of the old. Unlike the old covenant, the new promised zippo of peace, prosperity and worldly comfort. There was no more "every man neath his vine and fig tree, will live in peace and unafraid" - in this world. Jesus made no promises of worldly plenty. (How strange that since then the cultures that at least seemed to reverence him most are the most affluent!) But he promised his followers, and modeled for them, internal and eternal love, joy, peace unbounded and overflowing.

And what a man. What a courageous, honest, compassionate, powerful, true-hearted man. How awful is sin and how well-deserved its condemnation and the devil's, if the First Adam was anything as majestic as the Second. We have fallen far. Hallelujah, what a savior!

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