Daily Devotional for March 20

 

March 20                                                        John 12:9-19
 

                      On Signs


In today's Gospel reading, John portrays Jesus entering
Jerusalem shortly after raising Lazarus from the dead. It is part
of the drama of the Gospel that the writer has the multitude
going after Jesus because he had given this sign, the raising
of Lazarus.


Jesus himself, of course, warned his disciples not to follow
others simply because they perform signs: "And then if any
one says to you, 'Look, here is the Christ!' ...do not believe
it. False Christs and false prophets will arise and show signs
and wonders, to lead astray, if possible, the elect." (Mark
13:21-22) Clearly, then, the Gospel imperative to us is to stand
firm and believe in Jesus no matter whether signs are present
or not.


Certainly we can be misled by following signs - we can grow
to love the signs and forget the one they point to. The crowd
following Jesus allowed Jesus' raising of Lazarus from the dead
to deceive them into thinking that Jesus was a temporal Messiah
who had come to liberate them from temporal darkness. Their
misunderstanding led to Jesus' crucifixion. The irony, though,
is that the crucifixion, coupled with the Resurrection, pro-
vides the greatest sign of all of Jesus' true identity and trust-
worthiness.


                               Dear Sovereign, let me
               carefully discern what kind of spirit is being
     manifested when I encounter a wonderful sign. Help me
         not to look for you in signs and wonders, but in the
                             fruits of the Spirit. Amen.


from The Road to Emmaus - An inclusive devotional Edited by Joseph W. Houle

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