Wednesday, December 3, 2014
He Saw and Believed
Now on the first day of the week Mary Magdalene went to the tomb early, while it was still dark, and saw that the stone had been taken away from the tomb.
Then she ran and came to Simon Peter, and to the other disciple, whom Jesus loved, and said to them, "They have taken away the Lord out of the tomb, and we do not know where they have laid Him."
Peter therefore went out, and the other disciple, and were going to the tomb. So they both ran together, and the other disciple outran Peter and came to the tomb first. And he, stooping down and looking in, saw the linen cloths lying there; yet he did not go in.
Then Simon Peter came, following him, and went into the tomb; and he saw the linen cloths lying there, and the handkerchief that had been around His head, not lying with the linen cloths, but folded together in a place by itself.
Then the other disciple, who came to the tomb first, went in also; and he saw and believed. For as yet they did not know the Scripture, that He must rise again from the dead.
The other disciple was John himself. Humble John. He spoke of Jesus, not himself. It was all about the Lord. It will always be all about Jesus.
Earlier in His ministry Jesus had said this: ...“Destroy this temple, and in three days I will raise it up.” Then the Jews said, “It has taken forty-six years to build this temple, and will You raise it up in three days?” But He was speaking of the temple of His body. (John 2:19-21)
For as yet they did not know the Scripture, that He must rise again from the dead. They had heard Him say these words, but seeing is believing sometimes. The truth of these words were understood at this moment...John saw something and believed. I'm sure Peter did too. If not there had to have been some verbal exchange between them.
We are called to have faith in the things that are unseen. Yet we have all the words of this Bible to show us what we need to believe. Examples. A way to trust in those things we can't see. I've heard testimonies of individuals I personally know where a complete turnaround has taken place in someone's life after they gave their lives to Jesus. After they came to the end of themselves, recognized their sin, and gave it to God. Some change so drastically you'd find it hard to believe they were this old person. Hopefully my testimony has touched someone. When we have humbled ourselves to this extent He will change us. And He will allow our faith to grow. When our faith grows we know we can trust Him for all things.
Up to this point the disciples were still not certain what all these circumstances were all about...Jesus' words to them, His arrest, abuse, crucifixion, death. They'd heard Him speak but not until they saw would they believe. And here, John went in, saw the grave clothes and handkerchief still neatly wrapped...and he saw and believed. Amazing. ...He must rise again from the dead. What else could all this mean? Cloths lying neatly...not disheveled.
We can have that same experience when we come to Christ. We don't get it until the moment we receive Him. Then we see spiritually and believe. As our pastor explained a couple Sunday's ago, no one can understand what we say until it happens to them. It's one of those marvelous mysteries of God. His Holy Spirit power at work in us to give us understanding just by knowing. Have you this testimony? It happens when we give ourselves over to trusting in Him and not ourselves.
For You will light my lamp; the LORD my God will enlighten my darkness. ...His way is perfect; the word of the LORD is proven; He is a shield to all who trust in Him. For who is God, except the LORD? And who is a rock, except our God? (Psalms 18:28,30-31)