There are scores of allusions, echoes, and connections between the New Testament book of Revelation and the Old Testament. Join us on Wednesday nights as we begin with a time of prayer together and then enjoy this fruitful study. We will go passage-by-passage through the book of Revelation, give a sense of a passage each night, and then explore its connections to the Old Testament, ending with a devotional thought as well.
Though Mark 16:9–20 is not the original ending to Mark’s Gospel (the majority position of evangelical scholars), its makeup is evidence that the early church used the other Gospels and Acts to form an ending that would be more in literary keeping with the other Gospels. A comparison of biblical manuscripts suggests that the formulation of Mark 16:9–20 came to be in the early second century. As one can see by looking up the biblical references below, what follows is a comparison of the contents of Mark 16:9–20 to the other Gospels and Acts in order to show what the church borrowed from the Gospels and Acts to provide an alternate ending to Mark.
Jesus appeared to Mary Magdalene (Mark 16:9; John 20:14–17) and cast out seven demons from her (Mark 16:9; Luke 8:2). She told the disciples about seeing Jesus (Mark 16:10; Luke 24:10; John 20:18), but they did not believe her (Mark 16:11; Luke 24:11). Jesus then appeared to two disciples walking on the road (16:12; Luke 24:13–32), and they told the disciples about seeing Jesus (Mark 16:13; Luke 24:33–35). Jesus then appeared to the eleven (Mark 16:14; Luke 24:36; John 20:19) and commissioned them (Mark 16:15; Matt 28:18–20; Luke 24:47). He clarified the results of belief and disbelief (Mark 16:16; John 3:18, 36; 20:23) and promised the disciples would cast out demons (Mark 16:17; Acts 5:16; 8:7; 16:18) and speak in new tongues (Mark 16:17; Acts 2:4; 10:46; 19:6; 1 Cor 12:10, 28, 31; 14:26). He later ascended into heaven (Mark 16:19; Luke 24:51; Acts 1:2, 9, 11) and sat down at the right hand of God (Mark 16:19; Ps 110:1; Mark 14:62; et al). The disciples preached everywhere (Mark 16:20; Matt 28:19; Acts 1:8) while the Lord confirmed their message with signs (Mark 16:20; Acts 14:3; Heb 2:3–4).
Items not supported by others texts (but may still be historically true for all we know) include the following: the disciples’ weeping and mourning (Mark 16:10); their disbelief in the testimony of the two (Mark 16:13); Jesus’ rebuke of the disciples (Mark 16:14; but maybe Luke 24:38; John 20:20, 27–29?); and Jesus’ promises that the disciples would pick up snakes (Mark 16:18; but maybe Acts 28:1–6?) and be unaffected by drinking poison (Mark 16:18; but maybe a comparison to Luke 10:19 could suggest that handling serpents and drinking poison are metaphors for overcoming evil?).
Apart from the questionable mention of handling snakes and drinking poison, though Mark 16:9–20 is not part of the Bible, much of it is biblical. Perhaps Mark 16:9–20 is an expression of just what Mark intended, that many would believe in Christ and His resurrection and tell others the story of Christ (cf. Mark 16:6–8).
Morning Worship Service (Sunday, 9:30 AM)
Our worship is a deliberate attempt in all its details to incorporate what is commanded of the gathered assembly on the first day of the week― prayer, preaching God’s Word, reading Scripture, and singing hymns, psalms, and spiritual songs.
Fellowship Break (Sunday, 10:45 AM)
This half-hour is a necessary time of church fellowship between our worship service and Christian Life Hour. With our busy American schedules, these few minutes are meant to allow us to catch up with one another and encourage one another in the Lord. Use this time to coordinate getting together throughout the week. Apart from this time, make it a habit to arrive to church a few minutes early and stay a few minutes after for you to further your relationships in the church.
Christian Life Hour (Sunday, 11:15 AM)
This time is primarily for teaching and discussion. Sometimes we study passages in the Bible about a specific topic, and sometimes we study chapter-by-chapter through a book on Christian living. This time has been an essential time of instruction and interaction in the life of our church.
Men and Ladies’ Bible Fellowships (Sunday, 6:00 PM)
The men and ladies of our church rotate on Sunday nights to enjoy a time of Bible study and fellowship with one another in an informal setting. We gather at a table-setting in the church lobby to study the Bible together while we enjoy coffee, refreshments, and one another. The schedule for the next four Sundays for both men and ladies is always listed on the back of the Sunday church bulletin.
Fifth Sunday Fellowships (Sunday, 12:00 PM)
About once a quarter we have a “fifth Sunday fellowship” in the month that holds five Sundays. We begin with lunch provided by each family bringing a dish to enjoy and share in our fellowship hall. After that, we enjoy hearing from individuals as to what God has been doing in their lives, coupled with hymns throughout the time. Other lunches are scheduled from time to time as well.
Wednesday Evening Prayer and Bible Study (7:00-8:15 PM)
Our prayer meeting meets in the large classroom accessible through the church lobby and begins with a welcome and announcements. After this, we highlight some of the requests in our prayer list and add requests as needed. We then spend some time in prayer. We hear from anyone who desires to pray, and Pastor Huffstutler ends this time with a prayer as well. We then sing a couple of hymns with a classical guitar as the accompaniment and have a short time of teaching from God’s Word. This midweek meeting is essential to the life of our church.
HGG 019 - I Sing the Mighty Power of God
HGG 249 - O the Deep, Deep Love of Jesus!
HGG 137 - When I Survey the Wondrous Cross
HGG 139 - O Sacred Head Now Wounded
HGG 267 - There Is a Fountain
HGG 012 - Praise Him! Praise Him!
HGG 059 - All Creatures of Our God and King
HGG 243 - Come, Thou Fount of Every Blessing
Booklet 41 - Why Do the Nations Rage? (Psalm 2)
HGG 016 - To God Be The Glory
HGG 610 - How Firm a Foundation
Booklet 24 - Salvation's Cup
HGG 267 - There Is a Fountain
HGG 023 - Immortal, Invisible, God Only Wise
HGG 476 - May the Mind of Christ My Saviour
HGG 335 - And Can It Be?
HGG 174 - Arise, My Soul, Arise
HGG 462 - Be Thou My Vision
HGG 371 - It Is Well with My Soul
Pastor regularly writes articles for our Sunday bulletin. See his bio on our staff page.