Whenever we say things like “I’m in the dark”, we usually mean that we don’t understand something, we’re confused or just don’t have the clarity we need. If we say “I’m going through a dark time”, we mean the circumstances and our emotional response to them are difficult and desolate. Darkness as a metaphor is never a positive image. Darkness is something we seek a solution to, a change from.
The creation account in Genesis begins in the dark: “In the beginning, God created the heavens and the earth, and the earth was formless and chaotic, and darkness covered the surface of the deep”. God intervened and spoke light, order and life.
All of that went wrong when a man and a woman stood in a garden and rejected God’s rule. As a result, darkness, chaos and death again captivated the scene.
After a long time, there is another garden…a man and a woman are standing there…and a new creation is breaking out of the old. God once again dispels the darkness and shines a hope beyond our wildest dreams into the chaos of a broken world. Creation 2.0 has commenced.
We’re going to be reading John 20:1-18 this Sunday (and yes, I’m finally back in the lineup), the account of Jesus’ resurrection from the dead.
The themes of new creation are all through John’s gospel, and his symbolism is almost heavy-handed in this section. He just really doesn’t want us to miss the point. All that Jesus did and taught was revealing what God is like and what God is up to – and here in his resurrection we see it in full bloom: redemption; new creation….RESURRECTION!
As you read this account, put yourself in the place of Peter and TDWJL (the disciple whom Jesus loved) – how do you think you would have reacted to Mary’s news? What would you think was going on initially?
V9 says Pete and TDWJL returned to their own home (literally, to themselves). What ways do we turn back to ourselves when we go through dark times?
Mary was inconsolable. She was on task: find the corpse of Jesus and get it re-buried. She was so miserable and fixated on that problem that she didn’t even realize the solution to her dilemma was standing right in front of her. What can that tell us about how we perceive our troubles – how should creation 2.0 affect our expectations?
If I asked you who the first evangelist, ambassador, teacher and missionary of the gospel was…who would you say? I know who v 18 says it was.
Hey…I’m really looking forward to this chapter! This should be some really encouraging stuff for us to explore! Hope to see you there!