I’m fascinated by the various reactions to Jesus’ resurrection in John 20. Even more than the reactions, the response of Jesus to all of them captivates me.
There are Peter and John who approach the empty tomb with shock and confusion. John, ever the observer, stands at the entrance of the tomb while Peter barges inside in his boisterous way. They see the empty grave clothes folded and lying there. Jesus folded up the grave clothesand left them as a completely conspicuous clue for his friends to find. As if he knew that the contrast of order and restraint in the presence of defiant and bold action would be the perfect complement to the presence of Peter and John at the empty tomb.
There’s Thomas, full of the doubt that would earn him his moniker. He proclaims his terms of belief and holds fast to them. Nothing but the very holes in Jesus’ hands and side would convince him. The holes that Jesus invites Thomas to place his hands in. Patiently Jesus allowed his friend to finger the marks of his crucifixion, gently Jesus provides the solid proof that Thomas needs so that he doesn’t have to doubt any longer.
And there’s Mary. Jesus finds her weeping and confused. She begs to know where her Lord is so she can simply go and get him, begs to know the answer that might ease her anguish. She is a woman who has loved Jesus deeply and misses him greatly. Her sorrow is palpable, her confusion easily imagined. And then Jesus erases her sorrow by calling her by name.
Jesus, the risen King, the Savior of the world, the one who conquered the very grave took the time to reveal himself to his followers in such intimate and personal ways. He knew their hearts, knew their minds, knew their struggles so completely and again and again revealed his goodness in a language that their souls could understand.
The Resurrection is the most universal event and the most personal event that a human soul can experience.
Jesus died for all, Jesus rose for all, and Jesus reveals himself to all. Reveals himself to the hearts he created in the most intimate of ways.
Think about how Jesus has revealed his glory to you. How has the story of his death and resurrection impacted your heart? Celebrate his deep and personal and powerful love today.
Pray that people would awaken to the news of Jesus' resurrection today. Pray that they would sense the ways that he is speaking to their hearts individually and that they would respond!