A Cathedral of Astonishment
Speaker: Brian Zahnd
The Gospel of Mark was the first of the four gospels to be written and its original ending was rather strange and quite abrupt. At a later date a longer and more satisfying ending was appended, but Mark’s original conclusion to his gospel narrative was simply this: “And they went out and fled from the tomb, for trembling and astonishment had seized them, and they said nothing to anyone, for they were afraid.” The End. But how can that be the end? It’s so sudden, so abrupt, so lacking in resolution or explanation. We’re left with three women fleeing from the empty tomb, trembling, astonished and speechless. It’s as if the film in the projector simply ran out and we find ourselves sitting in the theater puzzled by the unexpected ending. Why?