Mark 15:42-47

Mark 15:42-47 … Mark tells us many things about the death of Jesus. Here, he tells us that Joseph of Arimathea came to ask for the precious Body of Jesus. The Gospel of John adds that Nicodemus accompanied him. In our contemporary society, we like to ask: What did he know and when did he know it? What motivated Joseph to step out of his comfort zone and ask the Roman governor for the body of Jesus? We have to speculate a bit to arrive at an answer, but we do know some things:

  1. Joseph, although a member of the Sanhedrin, did not agree with their condemnation of Jesus (Luke 23:51).
  2. He was accompanied by and possibly influenced by Nicodemus, another Sanhedrin member, who came to Jesus at night and to whom Jesus said: “I tell you the truth, no one can see the kingdom of God unless he is born again” … and “Just as Moses lifted up the snake in the desert, so the Son of Man must be lifted up, that everyone who believes in him may have eternal For God so loved the world that he gave his one and only Son, that whoever believes in him shall not perish but have eternal life.” (John 3)
  3. Joseph was a man on a mission, risking reputation, risking Jewish ceremonial defilement by handling a dead body on the eve of the Passover, and placing himself precariously in front of the Roman What did he know? What motivates him?
  4. We speculate about the answer, but it’s not unreasonable that Nicodemus has shared the Gospel message … that they both know that this is the Christ … and that they share the responsibility of a lifetime … tending to the human body of the Christ before He is resurrected.
  5. We can’t know for sure, but would simply note that their knowledge translated to action. They could not be dormant or indifferent; they had to act on what they knew, regardless of personal consequences. That’s real freedom … freedom from the law and freedom to live as Jesus taught.That might be one conclusion here … what do you do about what you know?

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