JOHN 20:8-9 THEN THE OTHER DISCIPLE, WHO CAME TO THE TOMB FIRST, WENT IN ALSO; AND HE SAW AND BELIEVED

5Apr

John 20:8 Then the other disciple, who came to the tomb first, went in also; and he saw and believed. 9 For as yet they did not know the Scripture, that He must rise again from the dead.

John believed Jesus had risen from the dead, by the sheer force of the evidence, not because he thought he was supposed to. What an incredible event this must have been. There, in the darkness of that tomb, John “saw the light.”

Lessons from John 19 and 20:1-8
1.  First of all, faith in Christ is never meant to be a private matter. The regular team—the eleven disciples—have been called off the field, and a number of substitutions have been made (to speak in sports terms). Among these are Joseph of Arimathea, Nicodemus, and Mary Magdalene. Who would have expected such folks to play a key role in the burial and resurrection of our Lord?

Again, I think their faith is growing. Nicodemus came at night; now he comes at the dawn. When Arimathea went to Pilate, he came out in a big way.

  1. it takes courage to come out for Christ
    I have just a few observations about these secret disciples; they do something very dangerous, very costly and for no personal gain. They risk a great deal. The text says, "For fear of the Jews they kept their faith in secret." They risk a great deal.
    How often we are like the eleven disciples of our Lord, so frightened and lacking in faith that we do nothing, or like the women in our text who are preoccupied with fears about how we can move a stone. How foolish these fears seem to us, and yet is it not our own fears that keep us from attempting what our Lord has commanded us to do?
  2. God provides. God provided. Neither the stone, the seal, nor the soldiers kept Jesus in the tomb—or the disciples out. God always provides for the fulfillment of His promises. He does so by the instruments of His choosing. He does so in His time. The human instruments were those we would not have chosen, people we would never even have considered.
  3. God is at Work all the Time

God was at work in the hearts of these two men—Joseph of Arimathea and Nicodemus—and at just the right time, He used them for His glory, and their good.

  1. The resurrection is a foundational truth for the Christian. Saving faith is resurrection faith.
  2. God always uses just the right instrument to accomplish His purposes in the right way at the right time.
  3. It was the turning point for men and women like Joseph, and Nicodemus, and Mary Magdalene, not to mention Peter and John and the other disciples.
  4. Devotion and love for Christ is increased when we know our origins. Go back to the ditch from which God pulled you out of." I hope you wonder about this as much as I do, but I wonder, "Why in the world did He save me?"
    9. We don't get we are to be living for Him. Your life and mine should be a thank you back to Christ for what He did for us on Calvary and the message of the resurrection is the core of our faith.
    10.  When it comes to the most important issue of your eternal soul, what will you pin your hopes on?  And for man to pin his hopes on humanism or agnosticism or some “ism” of “ology” is a fascinating thing.  That something as profound as a resurrection of life from death would keep us from knowing Christ.
  1. John’s Belief

8 Then the other disciple, who came to the tomb first, went in also; and he saw and believed.

The third word John used “to see” in the past tense, one is in verse five the other in verse six and now he uses a different one and this word is "to put it together" or "to perceive something." So first John takes a glance, blepo; then Peter theorizes and then John, the beloved disciple, perceives.

“He's gone. They didn't just take His body; He's gone!”

And he believes, John the Gospel writer tells us about John the beloved disciple.

It is incredible that some would conclude from this statement that John “believed that Mary was right, and that Jesus’ body was gone.” That would be to state the obvious. It seems to me what John wants us to grasp is that while Peter was still pondering the evidence, John had reached his conclusion. John had come to believe that Jesus really had somehow risen from the dead. John “saw” and he “believed.”

9 For as yet they did not know the Scripture, that He must rise again from the dead.

John commented (v. 9) that even after a long period of teaching by Jesus the disciples still did not understand from Scripture that Jesus had to rise from the dead (cf. PS’s. 16:10-11; 110:1, 4; Isa. 53:11-12).[i]

Ps 16:10 For You will not leave my soul in Sheol, Nor will You allow Your Holy One to see corruption. Ac 2:25-31; 13:34-35

Mt 16:21 From that time Jesus began to show to His disciples that He must go to Jerusalem, and suffer many things from the elders and chief priests and scribes, and be killed, and be raised the third day.

Three years of being with Jesus Christ and umpteen times He told them about His suffering, umpteen times He told them about being delivered over or handed up, umpteen times He told them that He would die on a cross, the Scripture of the Old Testament.  They should have known and we say, "Why didn't they get it?" Have you ever thought that? Are these guys that thick and dull?
It's unfair because we know the story far differently than they know it. In fact I think the failure for the disciples to understand is not an indictment about them at all. I think their failure to understand is an illustration of God's grace of their fledgling faith starting to take root. Because he saw it, he theorized and then John believed. I don't think the Gospel is intending us to think, "These idiot disciples." I think he's trying to show us how their faith is growing because what's the purpose of the Gospel of John? That you might believe. And John tells the story so that when we read it we’ll believe the story.
Many Scriptures that I've given you there you can track down on your own if you wanted to, but I want you to notice the way John writes it. “That He must.”  It's not that Jesus would rise from the dead. Jesus must rise from the dead because if he does not our faith is not only worthless, it's foolishness. It's foolish to call yourself a believer in Christ if Christ did not raise from the dead.
Why does John tell us this here and now? I think the reason is very simple, and very important. The disciples were not predisposed to believe in the resurrection of Jesus. It was not something which Jesus suggested to them, so that when His body was found to be missing, they would jump to the conclusion that He had truly been resurrected. John is telling us that he came to believe in the resurrection of Jesus before he even realized that he was supposed to do so.

John is telling us here that he became a believer in the resurrection of Jesus before it was understood to be a necessary part of the Christian faith

Ro 10:9 That if thou shalt confess with thy mouth the Lord Jesus, and shalt believe in thine heart that God hath raised him from the dead, thou shalt be saved.

John believed Jesus had risen from the dead, by the sheer force of the evidence, not because he thought he was supposed to. What an incredible event this must have been. There, in the darkness of that tomb, John “saw the light.”
1.  Some lessons. First of all, faith in Christ is never meant to be a private matter. When Joseph and Nicodemus are sort of finding out who Christ is, Nicodemus comes at night in chapter three and in chapter seven he says "Well shouldn't we basically do a fair trial?" And they call him a Galilean in which in our language would be, "You idiot! Of course we don't want a fair trial. We want to kill the guy. What's your point?" And now we find him securing spices.
There are a number of things which catch my attention in our text. The first is that there is a clear change of players. The regular team—the eleven disciples—have been called off the field, and a number of substitutions have been made (to speak in sports terms). Among these are Joseph of Arimathea, Nicodemus, and Mary Magdalene. Who would have expected such folks to play a key role in the burial and resurrection of our Lord?

John tells us that Joseph of Arimathea was a secret disciple; a crypto disciple. Is he telling us that to sort of criticize these guys? Again, I think their faith is growing. Nicodemus came at night; now he comes at the dawn. When Arimathea went to Pilate, he came out in a big way.

  1. it takes courage to come out for Christ
    Mark says, "He gathered up his courage and went to Pilate to ask for permission to take the body of Jesus." That took a lot of courage. I don't think it was a secret anymore. It would run quickly through the ranks of the Council and the Sanhedrin what Arimathea had done. The same for Nicodemus.

In Mark sixteen some versions say, "He boldly went before Pilate." A better rendering is "He gathered up his courage and went to Pilate." I like that. He gathered up his courage because it takes courage to come out for Christ , doesn't it? It doesn't keep a lot of other people from coming out; it seems to keep Christians from coming out.

So on the one hand the open disciples who follow Christ have all run away and hidden and the secret disciples are now coming out to bury the body. Isn't that interesting? We think they'd sort of show up and say, "Okay we'll take the body now" but they don't. These three other people we don't know that much about.
I have just a few observations about these secret disciples; they do something very dangerous, very costly and for no personal gain. They risk a great deal. The text says, "For fear of the Jews they kept their faith in secret." They risk a great deal.
So it's dangerous, and it costs Joseph of Arimathea a lot of money to do this. It was his own crypt; his own tomb and it warranted no personal gain. They weren’t going to get anything out of it. In fact they were going to get in trouble most likely, right?
I start thinking about their actions I asked myself, "Self, when have you done something that was dangerous, cost you a lot of money and there was no personal gain?"

How about you? When have you done something for Christ that involves some danger? I don't mean stupidity danger. That doesn't count. But you've done something that took a risk; you came out for Christ and it was dangerous and it might have taken your money and your time to do it and you would not gain. 

How often we are like the eleven disciples of our Lord, so frightened and lacking in faith that we do nothing, or like the women in our text who are preoccupied with fears about how we can move a stone. How foolish these fears seem to us, and yet is it not our own fears that keep us from attempting what our Lord has commanded us to do?

  1. There is another lesson to be learned here: God provides. I am reminded of the story of Abraham, when he took his son Isaac up Mount Moriah to offer a sacrifice to the Lord. Isaac asked his father where the animal to be sacrificed was, and Abraham assured him that the Lord would provide the sacrifice. And God did provide. Our text is another demonstration of God’s faithful provision of all that He has purposed and promised. He provided a rich man’s burial for Jesus, who should have been buried on “boot hill.” He provided a place near the cross, within a very narrow window of time. He provided, not through the expected means, but through a man whose name (Joseph of Arimathea) we have never seen before in the Gospels, and through another (Nicodemus) whom we would never have expected to help bury the body of our Lord. The women who followed Jesus wanted to be able to anoint the body of our Lord, but the barriers to entering the tomb seemed insurmountable. A large stone covered the tomb; it had been sealed by Rome, and soldiers were there guarding the tomb to make certain it was undisturbed. God provided. Neither the stone, the seal, nor the soldiers kept Jesus in the tomb—or the disciples out.

God always provides for the fulfillment of His promises. He does so by the instruments of His choosing. He does so in His time. The human instruments were those we would not have chosen, people we would never even have considered. It never occurred to me that, among the members of the Sanhedrin that condemned Jesus to die, there would be some who believed in Jesus, who opposed the plan of their peers, who managed to obtain the body of Jesus and give it a rich man’s burial.

  1. God is at Work all the Time

God was at work in the hearts of these two men—Joseph of Arimathea and Nicodemus—and at just the right time, He used them for His glory, and their good.

As I read through this text describing our Lord’s burial and resurrection, I am impressed with how unlikely it all seemed at the time. It looked impossible to secure the Lord’s body and to properly prepare it for burial before nightfall. It seemed impossible to find a burial place. There seemed to be no one who would be able to secure the release of our Lord’s body. And once the body of our Lord was discovered to be missing, there seemed to be no way to recover it. Much of what occurred in our text was contrary to the expectations and desires of those who were present. It does not seem as though Joseph really intended to have Jesus buried in his burial place, but as time ran out, it became the only thing he could do.

For John, at least, there is an unavoidable conclusion: God raised Jesus from the dead. All these things were orchestrated by God, at just the right time, and in just the right way, so that the Scriptures would be fulfilled.

This was not a conclusion John felt he was obliged to reach, based upon our Lord’s prophecies of His resurrection. John had completely forgotten about these prophecies. He believed in the resurrection of Jesus because there was no other explanation.

  1. The resurrection is a foundational truth for the Christian. Saving faith is resurrection faith. Christians do not believe in the resurrection simply because they feel obliged to do so; they believe in the resurrection because it is true, and there is no other reasonable explanation for the events which we find described in our text, or in the rest of the Bible.

By bringing about the fulfillment of prophecy in the way He did, God gave compelling proof of the resurrection of the Lord Jesus. The disciples and followers of Jesus believed in the resurrection because the evidence was convincing. That’s the way God wanted it to be. That’s the way God caused it to work out. He arranged for the body of Jesus to be placed in a hewn tomb, the entrance of which was covered by a great stone, sealed with the Roman seal, and guarded by Roman soldiers. The open and empty tomb was compelling proof that the claim of our Lord to be the Messiah, the King of the Jews, was true.

  1. God always uses just the right instrument to accomplish His purposes in the right way at the right time.

As I think of Joseph of Arimathea and Nicodemus, I am reminded that these were men of position and power, and at least Joseph was a man of wealth. I would never have imagined God would have used them to provide for our Lord’s royal burial, but this is precisely who He used. While it is true that God uses the weak and foolish things of this world, it is also true that He sometimes uses the rich and the powerful, as He does here in our text.

As I have reflected on this passage, I have come to realize that it describes one of the great turning points of all time. Our Lord is put to death, and His body is placed in a tomb, only to be raised to new life on the third day. This event turned the disciples’ sorrow to joy, their weakness to strength, their fears to boldness and courage.

  1. It was the turning point for men and women like Joseph, and Nicodemus, and Mary Magdalene, not to mention Peter and John and the other disciples.

It is by His death, burial, and resurrection that Jesus Christ saves us from our sins, and from the penalty of death. Have you trusted in Him, in His death on the cross of Calvary for your sins, and His resurrection from the dead, so that you may have eternal life? Let me invite you to do so this very hour. May the truth of this text be a turning point in your life, to His glory and to your eternal good.

Read Romans 3:16-25
8.  Another lesson - devotion and love for Christ is increased when we know our origins. Go back to the ditch from which God pulled you out of." I hope you wonder about this as much as I do, but I wonder, "Why in the world did He save me?"
Do you ever really wonder about that if you're a believer in Christ? Why did He love the likes of you and me? Why would He save us? Why would He save Mary of Magdala a demonized, sick, sinful woman? Why would He save a rich Joseph of Arimathea? Why would He save a secret disciple like Nicodemus who sneaks around at night asking questions? Because God loves no matter the person. He's no respect or persons. Whether you're a throwaway prostitute or a filthy rich man in a community, He's no respecter of persons. He loves you because He loves.
One of the ways we keep our intimacy with Christ; our seeking Him constantly is that we come back to the miry pit from which we were dug and we do not deserve His grace. Don't ever think you do and live as if you don't because the moment you begin to believe you deserve it, you become a Pharisee and you become self-righteous and your behavior.
These guys are trying to figure out the resurrection and you and I are trying to figure out the resurrected life. How do we live it? The only way I know is to beg God to somehow take this stinking body, mind and soul and to transform it into the image of Jesus Christ and to use it in spite of it.
Galatians 2:20 that says, "I am crucified with Christ; therefore I no longer live. Jesus Christ now lives in me and the life I now live In the flesh I live by the power of Christ.

  1. We don't get we are to be living for Him. Your life and mine should be a thank you back to Christ for what He did for us on Calvary and the message of the resurrection is the core of our faith. Why do we pin our hopes on this? Because if He is dead and buried then go eat, drink and be merry because you're going to die.
    10. When it comes to the most important issue of your eternal soul, what will you pin your hopes on?  And for man to pin his hopes on humanism or agnosticism or some “ism” of “ology” is a fascinating thing.  That something as profound as a resurrection of life from death would keep us from knowing Christ.

Jesus' Post-resurrection Appearances

Easter morning

to Mary Magdalene (Mark 16:9-11; John 20:10-18)

to other women (Matt. 28:9-10)

to Peter (Luke 24:34; 1 Cor. 15:5)

Easter afternoon

to two disciples on the Emmaus road (Luke 24:13-32)

Easter evening

to about 12 disciples excluding Thomas (Mark 16:14; Luke 24:36-43; John 20:19-23)

The following Sunday

to 11 disciples including Thomas (John 20:26-28)

The following 32 days

to seven disciples by the Sea of Galilee (John 21:1-23)

to 500 people including the Eleven at a mountain in Galilee (Matt. 28:16-20;1 Cor. 15:6)

to His half-brother James (1 Cor. 15:7)

to His disciples in Jerusalem (Luke 24:44-49; Acts 1:3-8; 1 Cor. 15:7)

to His disciples on Mount Olivet (Mark 16:19-20; Luke 24:50-53; Acts 1:9-12)

 

Mark 8:36 "For what will it profit a man if he gains the whole world, and loses his own soul?

 John 14:6 Jesus said to him, “I am the way, the truth, and the life. No one comes to the Father except through Me. Have you trusted Him as your Savior? He can Save you if You ask Him based on His death, burial, and resurrection for your sins. Believe in Him for forgiveness of your sins today.

hisloveministries.podbean.com #HLMSocial hisloveministries.net https://www.instagram.com/hisloveministries1/?hl=en https://www.facebook.com/His-Love-Ministries-246606668725869/?tn-str=k*F

https://www.paypal.com/fundraiser/112574644767835624/charity/145555

“And you shall know the truth, and the truth shall make you free.”  -John 8:32

The world is trying to solve earthly problems that can only be solved with heavenly solutions.