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Pearls of the Kingdom 3/27/24

So I find myself reading these passages of scripture from John. 

Jn 20:1-2  “Early on Sunday morning, while it was still dark, Mary Magdalene came to the tomb and found that the stone had been rolled away from the entrance. She ran and found Simon Peter and the other disciple, the one whom Jesus loved. She said, “They have taken the Lord’s body out of the tomb, and we don’t know where they have put him!”

Jn 20:3-10 “Peter and the other disciple started out for the tomb. They were both running, but the other disciple outran Peter and reached the tomb first. He stooped and looked in and saw the linen wrappings lying there, but he didn’t go in. Then Simon Peter arrived and went inside. He also noticed the linen wrappings lying there, while the cloth that had covered Jesus’ head was folded up and lying apart from the other wrappings. Then the disciple who had reached the tomb first also went in, and he saw and believed—for until then they still hadn’t understood the Scriptures that said Jesus must rise from the dead. Then they went home.”

Unclear, what did they believe? Did they truly understand that Jesus had risen from the dead or did they believe what Mary had spoken, “Jesus body is not here?”  I sense they believed Mary, “Yes your right, Jesus isn’t here" and went home. Mary, unlike the disciples, stays.

Jn 20: 11-13 “Mary was standing outside the tomb crying, and as she wept, she stooped and looked in. She saw two white-robed angels, one sitting at the head and the other at the foot of the place where the body of Jesus had been lying. “Dear woman, why are you crying?” the angels asked her. “Because they have taken away my Lord,” she replied, “and I don’t know where they have put him.”

I sense that Mary just experienced a “perfect storm.” What do I mean? This Jesus who she loves so deeply has been, arrested, falsely accused, sentenced to death, beaten, crucified on the cross and placed in a tomb. Going to anoint his body, not thinking how she was going to roll away the stone (Mark 16:1-4), yet she finds the stone has been rolled away. Jesus body is not here. Perhaps in sadness, in a panic, wondering, “who would have taken his body? Where could they have taken him?”  

Jn 20:14-15 “She (Mary) turned to leave and saw someone standing there. It was Jesus, but she didn’t recognize him. “Dear woman, why are you crying?” Jesus asked her. “Who are you looking for?” She thought he was the gardener. “Sir,” she said, “if you have taken him away, tell me where you have put him, and I will go and get him.”

No sermons, Jesus only words, He calls out her name, “Mary.”  Immediately she new it was Jesus. Hearing His voice, her sadness is turned to gladness and peace comes to her panic.

Jn 20:16 “Mary!” Jesus said. She turned to him and cried out, “Rabboni!” (which is Hebrew for “Teacher”).

“No sweeter words to ones ears, than the words of the Good Shepherd calling His very own by name”

Jn 10:2-3 “But the one who enters through the gate is the shepherd of the sheep. The gatekeeper opens the gate for him, and the sheep recognize his voice and come to him. He calls his own sheep by name and leads them out.”

My friends, it is my prayer that you will encounter Jesus, the Good Shepherd this week in a fresh and personal way. 

Pastor Jeff

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