The lion of St Mark


Chapter 16: The Resurrection of Jesus

The gospel as we have it ends at 16,8, as we have seen. The women we are told run away from the tomb "for they were afraid". Needless to say, the strange ending has caused much controversy with speculation about lost pages. What we have though is the open-ended ending which we have now read as part of chapter 15 and which brings to a close our reading of the Gospel.

The strange ending has inevitably led to later additional endings being composed in an attempt to give the Gospel a more satisfactory conclusion. Most Bibles include a shorter ending which does not have a verse number.

There is also a longer ending, 16,9-20, which is clearly an addition but is recognised by the Church as canonical. We will look at this therefore on the next page.

Yet our reading of the Gospel of Mark ends with the women running away in 16,8. That is the Gospel story as we have it. Strange, enigmatic, confusing maybe, but that is the life of faith, following Jesus on the way (10,52).