Christ’s Mandate: “Go!”

Mark 16: 15-20
1 Pet 5:5b-14 / Psa 89: 2-3,6-7,16-17

Go into all the world and preach the good news to all creation.
(Mark 16:15)

Proclaim the Gospel to all men,
As we’ve received so we must give;
Declare that Jesus Christ has risen,
And you will save those who believe.

Jesus said to the apostles, “Go into all the world and preach the good news to all creation. Whoever believes and is baptized 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 sick people, 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 through accompanying signs. (Mark 16:15- 20)

Reflection

Before His Ascension into heaven, Jesus gave His final mandate to His apostles. His mission on earth was over, theirs was just beginning. But His departure meant only His physical absence from His disciples; He promised them that He would still be with them in a new way – and always until the end of time (Mat.28:20). That was why when Jesus departed from them, they did not feel any grief or sorrow. Instead, they went away filled with joy and great anticipation for the coming of the Holy Spirit.

Today’s Charismatic revival is a continuing manifestation of Christ’s Commission to all His followers. What started as a Pentecostal movement early in the twentieth century is now regarded as the greatest spiritual renewal in the Christian world. This is regarded by the Church as the outpouring of the Holy Spirit in God’s design to unite all of His children. It has given rise to thousands of religious organizations all over the world from diverse Christian denominations that all profess the work of the Holy Spirit in their charters. The BCBPBrotherhood of Christian Businessmen and Professionals — is one such Charismatic organization in the Philippines that has touched the lives of thousands of Catholics to “go and preach the Good News” to the business and professional world. Aside from its evangelization activities, the BCBP encourages all its members to be active in regular church attendance, in praying together, in giving material support to their parishes and charitable causes, and in the regular meditation of the Holy Scriptures.

Those who have received the commission of Jesus Christ to be heralds of the Good News of salvation have seen the end of their worldly life, and are now living a new life in the Holy Spirit. There is reason to rejoice and be glad, despite the trials that we might face. As St. Peter wrote in today’s first reading: “And the God of all grace, who called you to his eternal glory in Christ, after you have suffered a little while, will himself restore you and make you strong, firm and steadfast” (1Pet.5:10). Yes, because we believe that the risen Lord continues to work in us through the power of His Spirit, and we are only so privileged to share in the work of His saints.

Father God, You have filled our hearts with a spirit of joy which no trials or difficulties can overcome. May we always live a life of praise and thanksgiving for our renewal, and may we fulfill Your purpose in our lives, always striving for the ideals and values of Jesus Christ, our Lord and Savior. In His Name we pray. Amen.

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