GET OUT

Have you ever told someone about an incredible incident, and had their response be, “Get Out!” Sounds silly, I know. There are some pretty strange idioms that, on the surface, make no sense at all.

Before we look at “Get Out,” some other strange idioms and apply them to our daily life, I don’t want to tell you to “Get Out!” I want to say welcome to “Mornings with Bishop Robert.”

I have to confess that I have no idea if these idioms will translate well into any of the 17 languages on our website. So I’ll have to do a bit more explaining than usual, I think.

How could “Get Out” and “Shut Up” both mean the same thing?? Either one can be used as an expression of surprise, and not mean at all that one should be silent or immediately relocate. In English, we talk about going “cold turkey” if we’re going to abruptly give up a bad habit. If someone we know is ill, we say they’re feeling “under the weather.” We complain that “the cat’s got their tongue” when we expect someone to explain themselves and won’t.

What’s worse, we try to excuse the deliberate foul language to follow by saying, “Pardon my French” before being vulgar or obscene; but frankly the French have nothing to do with it. Some idioms are hardly used any more. I can’t remember the last time I heard a boastful and obnoxious person described as being “all mouth and no trousers.”

But sometimes – thankfully – people say exactly what they mean.

Today’s verse says GO INTO ALL THE WORLD AND PREACH THE GOSPEL TO ALL CREATION.

This is Mark’s retelling of Jesus’ command to His disciples. Luke includes Christ’s instruction to be His witnesses in Jerusalem, and in all Judea and Samaria, and to the ends of the earth. When Jesus said “all the world” that must have come as quite a shock to the folks in the upper room in Jerusalem. I’m pretty confident that they had never considered a global ministry, and absolutely certain they hadn’t thought about non-Jews being part of the picture.

Jerusalem. Yeah, sure. They were to tell Jerusalem, and that would have made sense. Jerusalem was the center of their religious world. Jesus and His disciples had already spent a significant amount of time there. Like all Jewish males, they would already be coming to Jerusalem at least three times a year for the major feasts. This one was a no brainer. (Another idiom that means something is so clear that it’s totally obvious.)

Judea was probably not unexpected. While most of their ministry had occurred in the Galilee, which is to the north of Jerusalem; Judea was largely to the south of Jerusalem. It was inhabited by a larger Jewish population, and so this directive probably made sense to them as well. They may have even thought that the work in Judea would be “a piece of cake;” which is another idiom that means a task is expected to be easy.

Now Samaria was where things began to get dicey, an idiom referring to something that offers a real challenge. Think of the most hated group in your societal circles today, the ones who have the worst racial epithets – that was the common feeling Jews had for the Samaritans in Jesus’ day. The Samaritans got along worse with the Jews than Hamas. The Jews and Samaritans hated one another so much that most people traveling from the Galilee to Jerusalem wouldn’t take the straighter, short route and pass through Samaria. Instead, they’d deliberately pass to the east and follow the Jordan River valley, and then ascend the very steep Judean hills from Jericho up to Jerusalem. When Jesus specifically included Samaria as a target of their message, that would have been quite a shock.

But GO INTO ALL THE WORLD, now that was a mind-blower. (Which is an idiom for something that is totally beyond any expectation one could have.) The response of the apostles, according to an early extra-biblical story, says they cast lots and divided up the world to determine who would go where so all could hear about Jesus. And then they did it.

GO INTO ALL THE WORLD AND PREACH THE GOSPEL TO ALL CREATION

We who follow Christ have the same call today. You’re called to share Jesus in your “Jerusalem” – which is your hometown. Family, friends and neighbors. And in your “Judea” – which is nearby, but still a distance away and requires effort to reach. Your “Samaria” is the folk you’d rather not speak to, even about Jesus. The folks you are not quite comfortable being around, perhaps even the ones who are scary and smelly. The “ends of the earth” opens the planet before you. That’s a VERY scary thought to many. But Jesus is still sending people to the ends of the earth, because in case you haven’t noticed, the job isn’t finished.

GO INTO ALL THE WORLD AND PREACH THE GOSPEL TO ALL CREATION

It’s time to “Get Out.” Literally.

Leave a Comment

Choose Your Language ยป