November 12 – Secret Followers

Read: John 19:38-42

After these things Joseph of Arimathea, who was a disciple of Jesus, but secretly for fear of the Jews, asked Pilate that he might take away the body of Jesus, and Pilate gave him permission. So he came and took away his body. Nicodemus also, who earlier had come to Jesus by night, came bringing a mixture of myrrh and aloes, about seventy-five pounds in weight. (John 19:38, 39 ESV)

Joseph and Nicodemus had decided to follow Jesus as disciples, but not in the open. They were two of Jesus’ secret followers. I can’t help but think how that might have changed for them the day they buried the Son of God.

Do you ever wonder if they understood the full implications of all that was going on? Did they truly know who Jesus was? If they were too afraid to follow him openly why did they decide to claim his body?

I don’t have all of the answers, but I feel like scripture points us to one possibility. The death of Jesus changed everything. Creation itself responded in some pretty incredible ways. The supernatural activity of the day may have been the push Joseph and Nicodemus needed to move beyond mental consent and into the realm of heartfelt following.

How open are you about your faith? Do you keep it a secret because of what you think others will think about you? If so, what will it take for you to move beyond being a secret follower to just plain following?

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