Monday, April 18, 2011
Yesterday was Palm Sunday. One of my favorite days
of the calendar year. I have always loved it as it makes
me so happy that people rejoiced, sang praises and threw
their coats down as the King of Kings passed by on a donkey.
We we walk this week toward Jerusalem and all that happened
in the days before Jesus gave His life for the whole world. I find
that most of this week it is on my mind. I think about things like
God died. How does God die? How does He come back to life?
If God keeps everything that was made running, then how did the
world feel when the maker of every living thing was in the tomb
for three days?
I puzzle about passages in the Bible and it may take years but
they do get answered. I wanted to share one of them today.
In John 20: 4-8
And the two were running together; and the other disciple ran ahead
faster than Peter, came to the tomb first; (Doesn't that make you laugh?
John wanted us to know he could run faster than Peter)
And stooping and looking in, he saw the linen wrappings lying there; but he did not go in.
I have often wondered why John didn't go in then I think about when things are too
big for me to imagine and I must come to myself before I can proceed to the next
part of what I need to do, I think this was so huge for John he just couldn't go
I wonder, did John stand and weep as he came to the empty tomb? Remember
they were looking for a deliverer to take off the yoke of Roman bondage, not a savior.
I think too they wanted to be in leadership when Jesus came into His kingdom. All of that
was gone now. I am sure they were heartbroken. I know I would be because my desire
for all of the worlds offering would have been greater than the the desire to see it saved.
Simon Peter therefore also came, following him, entered the tomb; beheld the linen wrappings, lying there,
We are told twice in this part of John that the linen wrapping are lying there, so John wants
us to get the picture that this is very important, there is no body, the linen wrappings are
empty and the body is gone. I understand from this narrative they are just as shocked
as we would be if we came to a empty casket, opened but with the clothes our loved one
had been wearing but now empty.
And the face-cloth, which had been on His head, not lying with the linen wrappings, but
rolled up in a place by itself.
So the other disciple who had first come to the tomb entered then also, and he saw and
I have pondered this verse and read about it and read it in the original language over
and over. I know that there is something here bigger than the text but not understanding
Jewish culture or anything it wasn't until I was listening to an interview on the radio
with Simon Brower, that he solved my mystery.
He said," that that verse has always bugged him and he was doing research on a book
and he knew that Jesus was a carpenter. We forget for the first 33 years
of Jesus life he worked with his hands in Joseph's carpentry shop. People in those days
didn't read. So they used other ways to convey that a job was finished. They would take
a cloth, fold it up and lay it on a finished product. "
Just as in the above verse, the face cloth which had been on His head, Not lying with the
linen wrappings, but rolled up in a place by it's self,
Sending to John the message, It is Finished! The job was complete.
Then very simply the next verse says, "he saw and believed."
I have always wondered about John, it wasn't the empty tomb but the cloth.
I know for me, it has been the simple things that open my heart to the Bible.
The tiny parts that seem to shout to me the glory of God.
I woke up in the middle of the night thinking about this and I thought
I would share it with you. Because this week to me is one of hope, promise
and the gift of eternal life, paid for and given to the world, freely.
Have a lovely Monday,