My posts come from my personal daily scripture readings and a part of my personal accountability. If we are going to grow as followers of Christ, we must be in the Word! If you miss these a few days, something has kept me from it; but if they're gone for too many days, call me on the carpet. We need to hold one another accountable. Join me on this journey as our lives are to Reflect the Image-and Jesus IS the image. Peace, Carla Sunberg
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The view from Caiaphus' house.
Matt. 27:62 The next day, that is, after the day of Preparation, the chief priests and the Pharisees gathered before Pilate 63 and said, “Sir, we remember what that impostor said while he was still alive, ‘After three days I will rise again.’ 64 Therefore command the tomb to be made secure until the third day; otherwise his disciples may go and steal him away, and tell the people, ‘He has been raised from the dead,’ and the last deception would be worse than the first.” 65 Pilate said to them, “You have a guard of soldiers; go, make it as secure as you can.” 66 So they went with the guard and made the tomb secure by sealing the stone.
Matthew is the only gospel writer who includes this story about the guards. He does this because he was well aware that there was a false report that was being circulated about Jesus’ resurrection. This is a piece of the story that we need to know.
It’s believed that Judas is the one who probably warned the guards to look out for the miracle of the resurrection. In Judas’ mind that “what if’ question loomed large, and ultimately led him to his death. It was too big of a question for him to be able to handle. The information that he shared with guards also led them to ask the big “what if” question. Enough so, that they placed extra guards on the tomb. At least they didn’t want the disciples of Jesus to stage some kind of grave robbery and try to claim that this man was raised from the dead. The “what if” of the potential resurrection was far too great of a threat because the reality of it would be unthinkable. They may have really crucified the son of God.
In the silence of Saturday we discover that we are not the only ones who may be faced with the “what if” question in life. It’s in the times of uncertainty that the questions begin to erupt. “What if I choose to follow that path?” “What if things don’t work out the way that I would like?” “What if people don’t respond to me the way I hope?”
It’s in the silence of Saturday that the Jewish officials were faced with the giant “what if” — what Jesus said was true? That reality hit them and they knew that they needed to guard the tomb. A story of a resurrected Messiah would create more damage than they could control, therefore, action had to be taken. The “what if” had to be considered.
Maybe the “what if” needs to be seriously considered on this Saturday. We are not asked to play religious games, or simply to participate in the actions of a local faith community, but we are challenged to ask ourselves the most serious “what if” question that exists. What if the story of Jesus is true? What if Jesus really did raise from the dead? What if Jesus is the son of God? What if God really does exist? What if….
The religious and government officials were so afraid of the “what if” question that they had to play it safe. They ordered a guard on Jesus’ tomb, just to make sure that nothing would happen. Maybe you’re struggling with your faith and you’re finding yourself on silent Saturday wondering, “what if?”
“What if” you walked away from this faith many years ago? But “what if” —this story just may be true? Wrestling in the silence of Saturday and pondering “what if” may just be a good time to take proactive measures, because the story is true! Jesus really did die for our sins. Jesus really is the Messiah. Jesus really does love us. Jesus really did raise from the dead. Jesus really does make intercession for us to the Father. Jesus really wants to welcome us back home.
Think about it. “What if?”
Lord, in the quiet of today, I renew my faith commitment to you.Amen.
Unless the Lord builds the house,
those who build it labor in vain.
Unless the Lord guards the city,
the guard keeps watch in vain. Observation:
There is a foundation to the house of this life, and that must be the Lord. Application:
I think it started this week when we got off the plane in Boise. A flood of memories began to overwhelm me as I reminisced about the way that things used to be. Many years ago, when we were living in Russia, we would come back home to the United States on furlough, and that always meant coming to Boise, Idaho. My parents were living here and had built a home with two guest rooms that we would call “home” for three months. Exiting the security area at the airport, my parents were always there, waiting with expectant smiles, for us to finally arrive. I can see my mom, clapping her hands, with a grin from ear to ear, just waiting to wrap her arms around every one of us. This week, I glanced at the waiting area as we exited the security …
Scripture: Proverbs 21:17Whoever loves pleasure will suffer want; whoever loves wine and oil will not be rich. Observation:
Some have said that this verse speaks of the dangers of an Epicurean life-style. What does that mean? Generally we have attributed this to the teaching of Epicurus, a philosopher who was born in 341 BC. He encouraged people to find a static state of pleasure where one was satiated — or full. When the pleasures have been completely, or entirely satisfied, then one feels full. Later Epicurean societies adopted a motto: Non fui, fui, non sum, non curo ("I was not; I was; I am not; I do not care”). In contemporary society this phrase has been adopted to be used at humanist funerals, or to be carved as an epitaph on a headstone.
The problem is that they don’t understand what Wisdom was trying to say. Pleasure alone would ultimately leave one wanting. The Epicurean life of rich foods and drink, as well as the investment in oils and cosmetics could not be sustained. T…
Proverbs 15:17Better is a dinner of vegetables where love is than a fatted ox and hatred with it. Observation:
The guests are invited to dinner but the host is concerned that there is little to offer. Without the financial resources of the wealthy, they are unable to kill a fatted ox and can only serve vegetables. While some may be discouraged by this, wisdom tells us that the satisfaction depends upon the appetite of the guest. If the guests who are invited are hungry, then even a small meal will be enjoyed and received with gratitude. They will experience the love of the host who was willing to share all he had with his guests. Application:
I was born in Germany where my parents served as missionaries. It seems that our financial resources were often limited, and yet, there was an endless supply of guests at our table. Not only did we have our dear German friends gathering with us at the table, but also many visitors from other countries who would stop by, wanting to see “t…