Doubt

Doubt

Then the eleven disciples went away into Galilee, to the mountain which Jesus had appointed for them. When they saw Him, they worshiped Him; but some doubted. — Matthew 28:16-17

Men, the women who witnessed an angel at the tomb of Jesus have returned to the disciples. They report what they have seen and conveyed the message, “Go and tell my brethren to go to Galilee, and there they will see Me.” The 11 disciples go to Galilee, to the mountain which Jesus had appointed. When they saw Jesus, they worshipped Him, but some doubted.

The word translated here as “doubted” may better be translated as “hesitated”. Some may have hesitated in wondrous disbelief, others in awe, or concern for how their personal failures may be handled by the resurrected Savior. The text says “they worshipped”, but doesn’t say, “Some worshipped”.

This leads our minds to believe there was an acceptance of His resurrection once each one saw Him, but there likely would have been various responses to Whom they saw. Each person processed the occasion differently, but history would record that each one would be martyred for their belief in Jesus as the Risen Savior.

Our experiences with Jesus through Holy Spirit today also come with a mixed bag of response. Some fall apart in tears as years of hurt fall away. Others take a knee in humble submission to the King of kings. Whatever the response, it is clear, those who seek Jesus with their whole heart, find Him.

How many of us are too busy to go to Galilee? Sunday marks a time when seekers set aside a morning to encounter Him at least in His Word and through fellowship. How many of us fail to be counted? The 11 seen Jesus and worshipped Him. They wrestled with all the various implications, after they sought Him.

Move forward men, seeking Him while He may yet be found. Get off the couch and pursue an encounter. Go to church, open His Word, sign up for a conference, attend an event that facilitates encounters with Holy Spirit, but move toward a place where you may meet Him. He is alive and still reveals Himself to the earnest.

Consider this opportunity: The QuestLife

Vance Durrance

 

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Deception?

deception

On the next day, which followed the Day of Preparation, the chief priests and Pharisees gathered together to Pilate, saying, “Sir, we remember, while He was still alive, how that deceiver said, ‘After three days I will rise.’ Therefore command that the tomb be made secure until the third day, lest His disciples come by night and steal Him away, and say to the people, ‘He has risen from the dead.’ So the last deception will be worse than the first.”

Pilate said to them, “You have a guard; go your way, make it as secure as you know how.” So they went and made the tomb secure, sealing the stone and setting the guard. — Matthew 27:62-66.

Men, Jesus has been crucified and lay dead in a tomb offered up by Joseph of Arimathea. The next day the priests and Pharisees gather to meet with Pilate. Having remembered that Jesus had said, “After three days I will rise” they ask that a guard be placed at the tomb to secure it from any disciples who may steal the body and say to the people He had risen. The religious leaders feared that such an act would stir more emotion than Jesus had done while alive. Pilate sends them away to secure it themselves with a guard and seal.

Matthew has expressed the hypocrisy and corruption of the religious establishment well. As they called Jesus a “deceiver” they themselves have gone to Pilate with false concerns about Jesus usurping Caesar as “King of the Jews”. Now they again go to Pilate with concerns of deception.

Matthew, a disciple, may have been angry with the corruption of the religious authorities, but told as it is, Mathews account serves as an indictment of unbelief upon all the disciples. Even the enemies of Jesus had heard and interpreted correctly the meaning of Jesus’ Words, that He would rise. The Pharisees didn’t believe Jesus would rise, but at least they understood Jesus words. The disciples neither understood nor believed.

But, if this were a manufactured occasion, to deceive people into a false religion, who would include their own failings in their personal account? Matthew, a tax collector, already had wealth. Following Jesus cost him. A false claim of a Messiah would do nothing to help his standing among the religious establishment. If this gospel’s, or Jesus’ claim were untrue, why wouldn’t Matthew’s account be as guarded as Christ’s tomb? Jesus made bold claims, that were well understood, which came so true that an accurate telling of the story was possible even through personal failure to believe until after His claims were fulfilled.

Move forward men, with understanding and belief, that He did live, was crucified, He did die, and again LIVES!

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Breaking Tradition

Breaking TraditionWhile he was sitting on the judgment seat, his wife sent to him, saying, “Have nothing to do with that just Man, for I have suffered many things today in a dream because of Him.” –Matthew 27:19

Men, Pontius Pilate has reviewed the case against Jesus, found no fault in Him, and now stands Barabbas beside Jesus and asks the people to make a choice between the 2.  One will be released. At that moment, Pilate’s wife interrupts by a messenger. She sends word to her husband, “Have nothing to do with that just Man, for I have suffered many things today in a dream because of Him.”

In this time, regardless of religion, it was unusual for a wife to interrupt a husband from an official role. Some extra Biblical sources suggest that this wife may have become a convert to Judaism, but not likely until this point or later. In addition, this dream came before Pentecost, when the Holy Spirit was loosed upon mankind in Acts 2.

Like the question Peter answered earlier, “Who do you say that I am?” When the question holds the weight of eternity, it seems that those who are available for the gift of hearing from heaven are imparted with clarity on the matter at hand.

As Peter knew and answered, “You are the Christ, the Son of the living God” this wife also knew Jesus was a “just man”. Like Peter, flesh and blood hasn’t revealed this knowledge to her. She sent word via messenger to say she had “suffered much”. Clearly there is deep conflict within her heart. How often do people breach traditional protocols because of a dream? The “suffering” she experienced because of the dream must have been at deep odds with what she thought she knew, and what was expected of her under normal circumstances.

How available are we to hear from heaven? We could argue that her hearing from heaven was positional, being the wife of the man trying Jesus in a capital case. Even so, she also had the option to dismiss the dream and hold tightly to the gods of Rome. This woman recognized truth and validity in a dream and acted upon it with the power she had.

Move forward in like manner! Make the choice if granted heavenly truth. Test all things by the Word of God, and obey His voice.

Vance Durrance

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