John 20:3-10

So Peter and the other disciple started for the tomb. Both were running, but the other disciple outran Peter and reached the tomb first. He bent over and looked in at the strips of linen lying there but did not go in. Then Simon Peter came along behind him and went straight into the tomb. He saw the strips of linen lying there, as well as the cloth that had been wrapped around Jesus' head. The cloth was still lying in its place, separate from the linen. Finally the other disciple, who had reached the tomb first, also went inside. He saw and believed. (They still did not understand from Scripture that Jesus had to rise from the dead.) Then the disciples went back to where they were staying.

This passage gives us a vivid account of Peter and John's response to Mary Magdalene's news about the empty tomb. Their reaction is immediate and urgent - they run to the tomb to see for themselves.

John, referred to as "the other disciple," outruns Peter and arrives first. He peers into the tomb but doesn't enter. Peter, characteristically impulsive, arrives next and goes straight in. They both observe the linen wrappings lying there, with the head cloth neatly folded and separate.

The details about the grave clothes are significant. If someone had stolen the body, they wouldn't have unwrapped it, leaving the grave clothes behind. And certainly, they wouldn't have taken the time to fold the head cloth neatly. These details suggest that something extraordinary has happened.

John then enters the tomb, and we're told, "He saw and believed." This is a pivotal moment. John becomes the first person to believe in the resurrection based on the evidence before him.

However, the passage also notes that they still didn't understand from Scripture that Jesus had to rise from the dead. Their belief was based on what they saw, not on a full understanding of God's plan as revealed in the Scriptures.

This passage teaches us several important lessons about faith and the resurrection.

Firstly, it highlights the importance of investigating our faith. Peter and John didn't rely solely on Mary's report; they went to see for themselves. This encourages us to examine the evidence for our faith personally.

We also learn that people can respond differently to the same evidence. John believed immediately upon seeing, while Peter's reaction is not specified. This reminds us that faith is a personal journey, and people may come to belief at different paces.

The passage shows that belief can precede full understanding. John believed before he fully grasped the Scriptural basis for the resurrection. Sometimes, we may experience faith before we can explain it completely.

Lastly, it underscores that the resurrection is central to Christian faith. The disciples' urgency in running to the tomb emphasizes the crucial importance of Jesus' resurrection to their belief and ours.

As we reflect on this passage, let's ask ourselves: Am I willing to investigate the claims of my faith? How do I respond to evidence of God's work in my life? Do I allow others the space to process their faith journey in their own way? Do I believe even when I don't fully understand?

May we, like John, have eyes to see and hearts ready to believe. And may our belief drive us to seek deeper understanding of God's word and his plans.

God bless you.

More in this category: « John 20:1-2 John 20:11-18 »
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