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The Greatest Day 

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The Greatest Day 

My friend Nate Olsen snapped this pic on his recent trip to the Holy Land The Greatest Day John 20  It’s almost Easter morning! To us, knowing what we now know, it’s a glorious day of celebration, as it should be. He is risen.  But what about the disciples and the followers of Jesus? It’s not a celebration...yet.  A lot has happened in a few days.  Thursday Supper: Jesus spends several hours with the disciples teaching them, comforting them and preparing them to continue His ministry on earth.  Thursday evening: Jesus takes His disciples to the garden where He encounters Judas and several hundred soldiers with torches and weapons. They arrest Jesus while the disciples scatter.  Late Thursday evening and early Friday morning: There are several interrogations during mock trials with the High Priests and Pilate. The Jews insist Pilate execute Jesus and Pilate sends Him back to the Jews saying ‘I find no guilt in Him.’ Pilate eventually acquiesces and condemns Jesus to be crucified.  Friday morning and afternoon: Jesus is taken to Golgotha. He is nailed to a cross and He endures another six hours of excruciating pain and suffering. About 3pm, He gives up His spirit and breathes his last breath. It is finished.  Late Friday afternoon: Joseph of Arimathea, a secret follower of Jesus, asked Pilate if he could take the body and bury it. Because the Sabbath and Jewish day of preparation for Passover was about to begin at sunset on Friday, a tomb nearby was found. They bound the body in linen wrappings with spices and place the body in the tomb and sealed it. Sunset Friday until early Sunday morning: This is the Jewish Day of preparation and Sabbath. The disciples of Jesus and His followers were in shock and mourning.  Very early Sunday morning: Mary Magdalene came to the tomb while it was still dark and discovered the stone was moved, the linen wrappings were laying there and the body was gone. She finds Peter and John and tells them. They ran to the tomb and verified Mary’s claim. The tomb is empty, linens are there and Jesus’ body is gone. Thye are shocked and bewildered. Who took Him? 

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Passion Week 

This post is from last year's study of John Passion Week  This I Know  John 19  John's writing is different from the other three gospel accounts. His account of the suffering and crucifixion of Jesus is very succinct. His brief account of it is to prove a premise rather than give a detailed description of the event.  They took Jesus, therefore, and He went out, bearing His own cross, to the place called the Place of a skull, which is called in Hebrew, Golgotha. There they crucified Him..., 19:17, 18.   I would prefer more specific details to create context, color and emotion. John doesn't do that. He provides a view into a few events with the purpose of emphasizing the Deity of Jesus. As part of his purpose, John emphasizes fulfilled prophecy rather than creating deeper emotion within his readers by describing the details of Jesus’ brutal and inhumane suffering. Before their eyes, Jesus was fulfilling prophecies written of Him hundreds of years before. Fulfilled prophecy is a validation of Jesus’ claims! 

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God the Communicator

God the Communicator  Genesis 41  Joseph, lesson 14  Then Pharaoh sent and called for Joseph, and they hurriedly brought him out of the dungeon; and when he had shaved himself and changes his clothes, he came to Pharaoh. Pharaoh said to Joseph, ‘I have had a dream, but no one can interpret it; and I have heard it said about you, that when you hear a dream, you can interpret it.’ Joseph then answered Pharaoh, saying, ‘It is not in me; God will give Pharaoh a favorable answer.’ 41:14-1  There were various ways that God communicated during the era of the Old Testament. God, after He spoke long ago to the fathers in the prophets in many portions and in many ways, in these last days has spoken to us in His Son... Hebrews 1:1,2. In the case of Joseph, God made Himself known through dreams. This is similar to what He did through Daniel. Joseph was before the king of Egypt and Daniel the king of Babylon. In both cases, God used humble, men of God. I’ll come back to that thought... 

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The Outcome is Yours 

My grandson, Nate The Outcome is Yours  Genesis 40 & 41  Joseph, lesson 13  Joseph is in jail where the king's prisoners are held. Joseph interprets the dreams of the king’s cupbearer and the king’s baker. The cupbearer will be raised by up to serve the king again within three days. The baker will be hanged to death in three days. Joseph’s interpretations come true. He asks the cupbearer to remember him and speak to the king on his behalf. The text says; However, the cupbearer did not remember Joseph, but forgot him.  Two years later, in God’s perfect timing, the Pharoah has a dream and is perplexed. The cupbearer remembered Joseph and tells Pharoah about him. The king calls Joseph, he interprets his dream and the king honors him with great responsibilities and gifts. 

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