Thursday, April 17, 2014

Lent 2014: John the apostle

John 20:1-10
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How do you respond to fear? All of Jesus' disciples abandoned Him when He was arrested in the garden. Only John came back to stay with Him during His final hour on the cross. Perhaps the part of who he was that brought him back to Jesus despite the danger was connected to the reason he is described as "the one Jesus loved" and the reason John was with Jesus in each major moment of His public ministry. Even when He left the majority of His disciples behind, He brought John with Him along with Peter and James. The danger of martyrdom was very real for all the disciples, yet John chose to risk it rather than stay away from Christ on the cross. He risked it again on the third day to visit the tomb when Mary Magdalene reported it empty.
John describes his impression of the empty tomb as something that brought him belief but without understanding. His faith was well grounded in evidence, not simply in word of mouth or feelings, yet it didn't require him to understand in order to believe. Sometimes God chooses not to give us all we need in order to understand but chooses instead to give us just enough to believe and to trust in Him. The details will come later, when we need them. Until then it is enough to believe. It is enough to realize that He is not dead, though He very clearly did die. The implications of that miracle and the full understanding of what He is now will come later.

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