“Rise up, let us go.” – Mark 14:42
There seems to be a voice of hope in this call. The disciples had sadly failed in one great duty: they had slept when the Master wanted them to watch with him. He had just told them that they might as well sleep on, so far as that service was concerned, for the time to render it was gone for ever. Yet there were other duties before them, and Jesus calls them to arise to meet these. Because they had failed in one hour’s responsibility they must not sink down in despair. They must arouse themselves to meet the responsibility just before them.
Again the lesson is plain. Because we have failed in one duty we must not give up in despair. Because a young man has wasted his youth he must not therefore lose heart and think all is lost. There are other opportunities waiting for him. The loss of youth is irreparable. The golden years can never be gotten back. The innocence, the beauty, the power, are gone for ever. Yet why should a man squander all because he has squandered the best? Because the morning has been thrown away, why should all the day be lost?
The lesson is for all who have failed in any way. Christ ever calls to hope. He bids us rise again from the worst defeat. In the kingdom of grace there is always margin enough to start again, and to build up a noble life. Even down to life’s latest hour this remains true. The door of opportunity opened to the penitent even on the cross in his dying hour: there was no time to make anything good or beautiful of his life on the earth, save in his dying confession and testimony; but the eternity into which he passed is very long, with time enough for a glorious career. So it is always. In this world, blessed by divine love and grace, there is never any need for despair. The call after any defeat or failure still is, “Rise up, let us go.”