Thursday, April 21, 2011

Holy Week Possibilities: Thursday

So who exactly is this Joseph of Arimathea guy? Leaving a body on a cross for the inevitable, gruesome destruction by predators would have been the desire of the Romans, so Joseph must have had some pull to get the body of Jesus off the cross after only three hours. It makes me wonder about how he came to be a disciple of Jesus, and just what kind of follower he was. He seems to be friends with Nicodemus and perhaps they are both on the Sanhedrin. We hear about Nicodemus coming to Jesus in the night (and returning to the darkness after not being enlightened by the encounter) and are told that he was a follower from afar. I don't imagine Jesus courted friends in high places but that he certainly attracted their attention. That is what we should be doing as disciples today; doing the gospel in ways that attracts attention from the powers that be, not for the sake of the attention but in a way that can't help but be noticed.

I'm also pondering the fact that even at the time the theory that Jesus' body was stolen to fake a resurrection was considered more likely than what the followers claimed. It really is more likely that that is what happened, it really does take the suspension of rational thought to accept the story of a bodily resurrection as factual. I'm not saying that it didn't happen, but I am questioning how important it is for me to believe it. Can't I still find salvation through Christ if Jesus' body was stolen and he remained dead? I'm leaning toward answering "yes," but I'm still pondering. More on that later.

1 comment:

DavidJSpuria said...

I think the story is equally compelling in both ways. To me the resurrection symbolizes our new life in Christ and is important as a fact of history. I think it makes Easter possible in the real sense. We all agree Jesus was crucified. And I think we can agree he did rise again and ascend to heaven. It's the stuff in between that's a little iffy for some scholars and historians. The sightings are all a little odd. Jesus as the gardener and so forth. I'm hard pressed to not but some faith in the possibility of Jesus' bodily resurrection. But that belief is not AS important as HOW we FOLLOW Jesus to the Cross.