In The Word
Read: John 19:38-42
38 After these things Joseph of Arimathea, being a disciple of Jesus, but a secret one for fear of the Jews, asked Pilate that he might take away the body of Jesus; and Pilate granted permission. So he came and took away His body.39 Nicodemus, who had first come to Him by night, also came, bringing a mixture of myrrh and aloes, about a hundred pounds weight. 40 So they took the body of Jesus and bound it in linen wrappings with the spices, as is the burial custom of the Jews. 41 Now in the place where He was crucified there was a garden, and in the garden a new tomb in which no one had yet been laid. 42 Therefore because of the Jewish day of preparation, since the tomb was nearby, they laid Jesus there.
New American Standard Bible (NASB) Copyright © 1960, 1962, 1963, 1968, 1971, 1972, 1973, 1975, 1977, 1995 by The Lockman Foundation
Walking In The Word
Joseph of Arimathea, a very wealthy man, was a secret disciple of Christ. Joseph ended up publicly asking Pilate for the body of Christ as well as giving his own personal grave to our Lord. He took our Lord’s body off of the cross and moved it to his grave. It was now not a secret that he was a disciple of Christ. Nicodemus, a Pharisee and ruler of the Jews, was also a secret disciple of Christ. He gave generously toward the burial of Christ and was also not afraid to be identified with Christ.
Yahshua had patience with these men because He knew who they would become. He taught that if you are ashamed of Me before men, then I will be ashamed of you before my Father. Surely those words cut at the heart of these men when they were not willing to identify with Christ before this time. However, the seed of the Word did its work as they both, before the whole world, decided to declare Christ in a big way.
For many of us that are not ashamed of Christ, like Mary Magdalene or the disciples, we must be careful not to judge too quickly those that seem to not take a public stand right away in their faith. Like our Lord, we must be patient with people. For some, it is a process that takes a little time. We just need to keep sowing seeds of faith, knowing that one day, they will burst from under the ground and become oaks of righteousness. Be patient with secret disciples, and allow them time to show up. It will normally be in a big way.