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First Sunday of Lent 17 -18 February 2018

Have you ever no-ticed that Jesus begins and ends his public ministry in the wilderness? These deserts are the geographical bookends of the greatest story ever told. In today’s Gospel we have Jesus in the desert for forty days. Much later, when condemned to death, Jesus is led out of the city and crucified at Golgotha, another dry and desolate location. In both places Jesus is tempted. In Mark we are never told what Satan’s temptations in the desert were about. Luke and Matthew fill in those details. On the cross, however, Mark tells us that the crowd tempts Jesus to work a miracle, come down from the cross and save himself. In the first desert Jesus is ministered to by the angels and emerges to pro-claim that the kingdom of God is close at hand. In the later desert Jesus is ministered to by his women disciples and is put to death as a consequence for the way he lived out the Kingdom he proclaimed.

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