John 19:38-42 (NIV)
The Burial of Jesus
38 Later, Joseph of Arimathea asked Pilate for the body of Jesus. Now Joseph was a disciple of Jesus, but secretly because he feared the Jewish leaders. With Pilate’s permission, he came and took the body away. 39 He was accompanied by Nicodemus, the man who earlier had visited Jesus at night. Nicodemus brought a mixture of myrrh and aloes, about seventy-five pounds. 40 Taking Jesus’ body, the two of them wrapped it, with the spices, in strips of linen. This was in accordance with Jewish burial customs. 41 At the place where Jesus was crucified, there was a garden, and in the garden a new tomb, in which no one had ever been laid. 42 Because it was the Jewish day of Preparation and since the tomb was nearby, they laid Jesus there.
How does your fear of others and your love of Jesus sometimes conflict?
In today’s world, evil seems to be winning. Those who try to live in faith are ridiculed, criticized, and persecuted. They can lose possessions, careers are destroyed, and they are canceled from society. Evil is celebrated and Godly principles are chastised. Many people who call themselves Christian are silent when they see evil. Much like Joseph of Arimathea, people are afraid of leaders so they pray to You in secret. The intimidation of this culture has taken its toll on churches and on Your church families. How You must grieve our world right now. Lord, You stood up to the evil, past present, and future and died to defeat it. Precious Savior, thank You for destroying evil and death on that cross. The devil thought he won by having You crucified but instead, he worked into Your plan to save humanity for eternity. The devil is trying to destroy You through the evil of this world today but again he is working into Your plan. I read the end of the story, and You are victorious. So I can stand firm on my faith and believe that You are the everlasting king that I want to serve. I am not afraid of what man can do to me for You are with me. The cross cancels fear. No one can hurt my soul that has been bought with Your blood. Jesus, please, give Your family the boldness to stand in unity and proclaim the wonder of what You have done for all people. Bring about a revival that can replace fear and intimidation with love, joy, kindness, gentleness, and compassion. Let Your people unite in love, not hate, and to serve not to destroy. Amen