Links Daily Devotional

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The Week Ahead

Now Jesus was going up to Jerusalem. On the way, he took the Twelve aside and said to them, “We are going up to Jerusalem, and the Son of Man will be delivered over to the chief priests and the teachers of the law. They will condemn him to death and will hand him over to the Gentiles to be mocked and flogged and crucified. On the third day he will be raised to life!” (Matthew 20:16-18, NIV)

If ever we needed evidence of the divide between God’s foreknowledge and ours, a simple reading of the Passion accounts should do the job. Jesus knew. His disciples were clueless.

Not long ago in our area, an escalating feud between neighbors turned deadly. Two “respectable men” in the community lived their last hour. As I first reflected on the events of that tragic day, I thought, What if a man like Nathan, the prophet in David’s court, had come to these men and said: “This is what the next hour of your life will look like…”? There is no way they would have believed it.

Perhaps to our credit, we don’t want to believe bad things. No one wants the worst to happen.

But in the days ahead of his coming death, Jesus “telegraphed” the whole scenario for his closest followers. They had always known him as a man of intense purpose. But what could they make of these words? Certainly they would never want to believe them. So they didn’t, thereby adding denial to their lack of knowledge.

In the context of our own lives, we can perceive little of the future with accuracy, whether it will turn out bad or good. Achievers, above all, will always publicly announce the success that is to come; usually they will do the same behind closed doors. But in truth, they do not know. The final two hours of last year’s PGA Championship, eventually won by Keegan Bradley in a playoff over Jason Dufner, offered so many twists and turns that any variant roll, any difference in a hop, would have changed the outcome, or at least the way it was arrived at.

Yes, our suggestions to know the details of our next week are only pretense. All the reason more to live by faith in the one who does know!

Jeff Hopper

March 30, 2012

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