Day 222: August 10, 2013

Today's Reading(s)

Luke 24:9-12
9 Returning from the tomb, they reported all these things to the Eleven and to all the rest. 10 Mary Magdalene, Joanna, Mary the mother of James, and the other women with them were telling the apostles these things. 11 But these words seemed like nonsense to them, and they did not believe the women. 12 Peter, however, got up and ran to the tomb. When he stooped to look in, he saw only the linen cloths. So he went home, amazed at what had happened.

John 20:2-10
2 So she ran to Simon Peter and to the other disciple, the one Jesus loved, and said to them, “They have taken the Lord out of the tomb, and we don’t know where they have put Him!” 3 At that, Peter and the other disciple went out, heading for the tomb. 4 The two were running together, but the other disciple outran Peter and got to the tomb first. 5 Stooping down, he saw the linen cloths lying there, yet he did not go in. 6 Then, following him, Simon Peter came also. He entered the tomb and saw the linen cloths lying there. 7 The wrapping that had been on His head was not lying with the linen cloths but was folded up in a separate place by itself. 8 The other disciple, who had reached the tomb first, then entered the tomb, saw, and believed. 9 For they still did not understand the Scripture that He must rise from the dead. 10 Then the disciples went home again.

Unless otherwise noted, all Scripture quotations are taken from the Holman Christian Standard Bible®, Copyright © 1999, 2000, 2002, 2003, 2009 by Holman Bible Publishers. Used by permission. Holman Christian Standard Bible®, Holman CSB®, and HCSB® are federally registered trademarks of Holman Bible Publishers.



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Today's Reflection

Key Verse(s)

The other disciple, who had reached the tomb first, then entered the tomb, saw, and believed.
—John 20:8

Why do you seek the living among the dead?
by Amy Haywood Dutton,

Can you imagine the emotional roller coaster the disciples had been on? We have it easy because we know how the story goes. But, the disciples actually lived it.

For three years, they walked this earth with Jesus Christ, the Son of God. They were there when Jesus performed His first miracle at the Wedding of Cana, turning water into wine. They saw the lame walk, the deaf hear, the blind see, and the dead raised to life!

Think about that for a minute. We hear those words and phrases strung together in church, but rarely do we think about the implications of them.

They were at Lazarus’s funeral when Jesus called him to get up. When was the last time you were at a funeral and that happened?

John tells us, “And there are also many other things that Jesus did, if they were written one by one, I suppose not even the world itself could contain the books that would be written” (John 21:25).

Even after witnessing all that, in a sudden change of events, Jesus was arrested and crucified, murdered in the most humiliating way possible. Everything they had hoped and dreamed for was gone.

Scripture tells us the women went to the tomb on the first day of the week with spices they’d prepared. Surprisingly, they found the stone rolled away and met two angels there, who asked them, “Why do you seek the living among the dead?”

That’s a great question isn’t it? “Why do you seek the living among the dead?” It’s a question we need to ask ourselves today, just as much as they did 2,000 years ago.

Why do we look for Jesus, the Living God, among the dead? Why do we look at Him as merely a pattern and guide for how to live our lives, but fail to recognize Him as a living presence that lives and meets with us?

He’s not just a hero of the past, but also a living reality of the present.

It’s interesting that God used women first to find the empty tomb. In those days, a woman’s testimony was worthless and wouldn’t have stood up in a court of law. But, women were the ones to tell the disciples.

As soon as Peter and John heard, they took off running to see for themselves. Their testimony (two male witnesses) made the evidence admissible under Jewish law (Deuteronomy 17:6, 19:15).

When they went inside, they found the grave clothes lying there. This is important because it was proof that grave robbers didn’t steal Jesus’ body. They wouldn’t have left the linen clothes behind.

When John saw these things, he believed. In fact, he’s recorded as the first man to see and believe after the resurrection (John 20:8). It’s no mistake that he’s also known as the beloved disciple.

Love allows us to grasp truth when logic falls short. There always needs to be love.

So, then I pose the last question to you: Do you truly love Jesus? Don’t flippantly say “yes” because that’s what you’re supposed to say. But, when truth and logic don’t have a place, do you love Jesus enough to trust Him? Do you love Him enough to look past what the world says He is?

OK, then, why do you seek the living among the dead?

References
+  The Gospel of John (The New Study Bible), Volume 2, William Barclay
+  The Gospel of Luke (New Daily Study Bible), William Barclay

Reflection Questions

  1. Are there situations in your life where you’re looking for Jesus among the dead?
  2. Do you truly love Jesus enough to look past logic?
  3. Can you honestly say you love Him with all your heart, mind, strength, and soul? If not, what do you still need to relinquish control of?

About the Author

Amy Haywood Dutton
Twitter   » Blog/Website

Amy is a designer, a programmer, a dreamer, and a doer. She makes magic happen at Ah Ha Creative with the help of coffee, her Mac, and Pilot G-2 (yeah, she’s a pen snob). Since 1984, she’s attended Brentwood Baptist. She loves long walks on the beach (kidding...but really), running half marathons, reading, watching movies, and spending time with her husband, Henry. You can stalk her online at amyhaywood.com or follow her on Twitter @ahaywood.