Come Early and Stay Late

Your name may not be remembered, but live so that future generation will speak of you in a good way when they say, “There was a man/women…..”

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John 19:39 – And there came also Nicodemus, which at the first came to Jesus by night, and brought a mixture of myrrh and aloes, about an hundred pound weight.

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I find the Scriptures completely fascinating.  I realize they were not originally written in English, and that my Bible is a translation from languages such as Chaldean, Hebrew, Aramaic, and Greek.  But a particular phrasing of words from one language could be consistently translated to similar phrasing in English.  For a moment, consider the phrase, “there was a man.”  In almost every usage of that phrase, someone is about to be described or referenced who played a key role in the narrative at that point.  There are many references pointing to this very fact.  For instance, there was a Hebrew interpreter, a dream teller, the father of Samson, John Baptist, and Nicodemus.  There are multitudes more such references, but in each one, such terminology points to something of significance in the person’s life.

That is surely the case with Nicodemus.  His entry into the ministry of Jesus apparently came early, right after Jesus had selected His twelve closest disciples.  In John 3, Nicodemus came to Jesus by night, and he was a congregation of ONE.  Coming as he did to Jesus, he was among the first people to hear the message, “You must be born again.”  Nicodemus believed then, though the new birth could not happen for him until after Jesus was raised from the dead.  That is what makes his faithfulness to his beliefs so remarkable.  He came to his belief in Jesus early, and he stayed late.

Think of this:  there were many who believed in Jesus, but who at some point turned away from Him, including, at one point, His own mother, and His disciples.  Yet we don’t read this about Nicodemus.  With Him, it seemed much different.  He came to Jesus in His early ministry and believed.  Then in our Text for Today we see him in the picture again.  But amazingly, this was NOT after the resurrection, but immediately following His death.  If there was a point when His followers were having a struggle in their belief, it was then.  Yet that is when Nicodemus came on the scene the second time; this time with 100 pounds of myrrh and aloes to anoint and attempt to prepare Jesus’ body for burial.  It seems Nicodemus was expecting something beyond a funeral.

Are you expecting something great to come of your faith in God?  If so, adopt a Nicodemus attitude.  COME EARLY AND STAY LATE.  It is up to you to be that person whose actions will provoke those who follow you to say of you, “There was a man/woman….. 

Manna for Today – John 19:38-42; John 3:1-21

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