They still did not understand from Scripture that Jesus had to rise from the dead. John 20:9
Hearing has never been a problem for me. Understanding has. For example, as a child, I heard that Jesus loved me but I did not understand the ramifications of that until midlife. I heard that Jesus was powerful enough to perform miracles, leaving his spectators open mouthed, yet I didn’t understand that he might perform one for me. I heard that Jesus was forgiving but feared he might not forgive me for certain sins. Truth wasn’t mine until I embraced it as mine.
It is easy to know so much but experience so little. I can be saturated with information, while my heart shrivels from lack of application.
Jesus told his disciples repeatedly that he would die and three days later rise again. Yet when Peter and John found the empty grave, they were stunned. Why? Hadn’t they been told? John relates the reason: “They did not understand.” They had heard the words but had failed to internalize them into their experience.
What will keep my faith purely intellectual? Maybe I’m afraid to believe good news. I dare not trust that I’m really valuable to God. I dare not dream that He longs for a relationship with me. How can fairy-tale love really exist?! Was I really created to know, and then be a container, for the glory of God? The answer to all is yes. It’s not too good to be true. God is good and His news is so good that it must be true!
What parts of the Gospel do you think you know but still don’t understand? What hasn’t penetrated your heart yet? Can you just one piece today – just one – on this Good Friday? Jesus’ sacrifice was meant to completely save us and sanctify us to such an extent that our entire belief system is saturated with the truth of our belovedness. Someone once told me, “It takes real guts to believe that!” No one has guts the likes of that. It’s called faith. Faith that comes by hearing the Word of God. And God delights in giving us faith beyond ourselves.
Expose any pockets of unbelief as I behold You on the cross today, the cross You endured for me. Breathe over my soul to make every expression of love invade my scared and skeptical heart. Amen