“She, supposing Him to be the gardener, . . .”
Mary saw Jesus, but the circumstance she was in, and the experiences she was facing, caused her to conclude that He was a gardener. It was not until she heard His Word, that she clearly understood who He really was.
It interests me how many different, even opposing views, people develop regarding Jesus. These views have two things in common. First, they are usually forged as a result of personal experience, and second, they are always formed without the illumination of Scripture. Some consider Jesus to be a good person who was misunderstood; others, a mythical figure; while till others, use portions of Scripture to develop a hybrid Jesus, who bears little resemblance to the Jesus of the Bible.
This is not only true of the unbeliever or the seeker, it is also true of the Christian. How often do we allow the circumstances of life to shape our view of Christ? When we are facing hardship, we think of Him as unloving, distant or even weak. While blessings cause us to think of Him as loving and kind. It is not our circumstances, but His Word, that defines Him. When we will listen to His Word, we will see who He truly is, and how He wants to work in our circumstances.
Never limit Jesus to what you understand of Him; He is so much greater than that. Let His Word define Him as you worship Him.
Questions for John 20
- In verses 1-9 a body is missing from the tomb, but no risen Savior, yet. What three individuals examine the tomb?
- Read verse 9. Although Jesus had taught them that He would die and rise again in the fulfillment of the Scriptures, they didn’t understand. Does not understanding something mean that it is not true? Have you ever had 20/20 hindsight (spiritually speaking) on a circumstance that was difficult to understand while you were going through it?
- Read verses 10-11. Where do the disciples go? Where does Mary go? Why do you think she did?
- As Jesus begins to talk with Mary, she doesn’t recognize Him. What reasons could there be for that? Read Luke 24:15-16 for a possibility.
- Why were the disciples hidden in a locked room? What changed when Jesus arrived? (Verse 19-20)
- Read verse 22. Compare this with John 14:16-18. Did Jesus make good on this promise?
- How did Thomas respond to the news that Jesus had risen? (Verse 24-25)
- How did Jesus respond to Thomas’ doubt? (Verse 26-29)
- In verse 29 Jesus talks about how blessed those are who have not seen and yet believe. Who falls in to that category?
- According to verse 30-31, why was the Gospel of John written? Do you think this would be a useful book for a person to read who did not yet know Jesus?
Deuteronomy 21- The Curse
Deuteronomy 22- Torn Apart