Loving God, bring your Word to life for me today. Plant it deep in my heart. Give me ears to hear your tender voice.next >
After this Joseph of Arimathea asked Pilate if he could take away the body of Jesus. Joseph was a disciple of Jesus, but a secret one because he feared the Jewish authorities. Pilate gave him permission, so he came and took the body away. Nicodemus, the one who at first had come to Jesus at night, was there too. He brought a mixture of myrrh and aloe, nearly seventy-five pounds in all. Following Jewish burial customs, they took Jesus’ body and wrapped it, with the spices, in linen cloths. There was a garden in the place where Jesus was crucified, and in the garden was a new tomb in which no one had ever been laid. Because it was the Jewish Preparation Day and the tomb was nearby, they laid Jesus in it.
John 19:38-42next >
Joseph of Arimathea and Nicodemus were secret followers of Jesus, men who could lose power and prestige if their peers knew. But, as with all secrets, theirs eventually came to light. Jesus was buried in Joseph’s family tomb, and Christian tradition holds that Nicodemus was eventually martyred for his faith.
Given that God created all things through Jesus (John 1:3) and that Jesus is repeatedly referred to as light (John 1:4-5), it seems that creation itself was designed to thwart secrecy. The light of Christ will reveal everything hidden in darkness. Either now or whenever we see Jesus face to face, all will be revealed.
For Joseph and Nicodemus, their faith was revealed well after their moment passed. Jesus was already crucified. You could say they missed the opportunity of a lifetime, the opportunity to stand with their Savior. What secrets obstruct your relationship with God? Rejoice in the knowledge that God’s grace frees us to “come clean” now and to live without the fear and shame of secrets.
Wade Griffithnext >
Lord, give me the confidence to reveal my heart when it is safe to do so. Guide me to friends, family, or ministers with whom I can reveal my true self. Give me the strength to live my life fully in the light. Amen.next >
To believe in Jesus is to receive his costly love. To follow him is to share that love with others.
How will you share the love of Jesus today?
Wade Griffith is the pastor of Liberty Crossings United Methodist Church in Birmingham, AL. He is married to Julia and they have two boys, Wade (5) and Haines (3). In his meager spare time, Wade likes to backpack, hunt, read, exercise, and garden.
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