Whom do you Seek?
3 So Judas, having procured a band of soldiers and some officers from the chief priests and the Pharisees, went there with lanterns and torches and weapons.4 Then Jesus, knowing all that would happen to him, came forward and said to them, “Whom do you seek?” 5 They answered him, “Jesus of Nazareth.” Jesus said to them, “I am he.”[a] Judas, who betrayed him, was standing with them.6 When Jesus[b] said to them, “I am he,” they drew back and fell to the ground.7 So he asked them again, “Whom do you seek?” And they said, “Jesus of Nazareth.” 8 Jesus answered, “I told you that I am he. So, if you seek me, let these men go.”
11 But Mary stood weeping outside the tomb, and as she wept she stooped to look into the tomb. 12 And she saw two angels in white, sitting where the body of Jesus had lain, one at the head and one at the feet. 13 They said to her, “Woman, why are you weeping?” She said to them, “They have taken away my Lord, and I do not know where they have laid him.” 14 Having said this, she turned around and saw Jesus standing, but she did not know that it was Jesus. 15 Jesus said to her,“Woman, why are you weeping? Whom are you seeking?” Supposing him to be the gardener, she said to him, “Sir, if you have carried him away, tell me where you have laid him, and I will take him away.” 16 Jesus said to her, “Mary.” She turned and said to him in Aramaic,[b] “Rabboni!” (which means Teacher).
Like children on an easter egg hunt, we are forever on a hunt for "something" that will make us happy. It doesn't matter what is in the egg, all that matters is that everyone else is doing it. So when Jesus asks us, "Whom are you seeking", suddenly everyone stops dead in their tracks because we discover that we don't actually know what we're searching for.
The soldiers were looking for a criminal, Mary, a corpse. But the resurrection of Jesus Christ shows us that what we have really been looking for is a powerful savior who has defeated death. But it is only when we hear Jesus calling us out by name that this power and wonder is directed toward us, and suddenly the message becomes deeply personal, and even transformational.
Whom are you seeking? More importantly yet, has Jesus found you and called you by name?
When is it okay to sing Kumbaya?
Amos 5:18 - 24
Alas for you who desire the day of the Lord! Why do you want the day of the Lord? It is darkness, not light; as if someone fled from a lion, and was met by a bear; or went into the house and rested a hand against the wall, and was bitten by a snake.
Is not the day of the Lord darkness, not light, and gloom with no brightness in it? I hate, I despise your festivals, and I take no delight in your solemn assemblies. Even though you offer me your burnt offerings and grain offerings, I will not accept them; and the offerings of well-being of your fatted animals I will not look upon. Take away from me the noise of your songs; I will not listen to the melody of your harps. But let justice roll down like waters, and righteousness like an ever-flowing stream.
God despised Israel's feasts and worship when they were committing crimes and responsible for the injustices of their society. The Israelites longed for the Day of the Lord because they thought they were in the right, but the prophet Amos proclaimed that for those who oppress the weak and steal from the widows and orphans, the Lord's Day would not be a day of gladness, but of darkness and misery.
As the Church, we are called to identify those who suffer and fight for their cause. Thankfully, we know that the fight against injustice and suffering can be won by looking to the completed work of Jesus Christ on the cross, which tells us that fighting for justice is not meaningless, but it is a secured victory.
But if we are part of the problem, it is not okay to sing Kumbaya ("Lord, Come here").
Girls to Goddesses - problems of the split mind
1 Kings 11:1 - 411 Now King Solomon loved many foreign women along with the daughter of Pharaoh: Moabite, Ammonite, Edomite, Sidonian, and Hittite women, 2 from the nations concerning which the Lord had said to the sons of Israel, “You shall not associate with them, nor shall they associate with you, for they will surely turn your heart away after their gods.” Solomon held fast to these in love. 3 He had seven hundred wives, princesses, and three hundred concubines, and his wives turned his heart away. 4 For when Solomon was old, his wives turned his heart away after other gods; and his heart was not wholly devoted to the Lord his God, as the heart of David his father had been.
Today, we learned that double-mindedness comes from having doubt, or too many things that compete for our attention other than God. Double-mindedness originates from sin, and those who suffer from it are unable to pursue anything with their full heart and attention. It makes you emotionally unstable, tired, restless, and unsatisfied. But most importantly, it severs your relationship with God and Man.
Youth Group, let us single-mindedly pursue God as we hear David's final message to his son:
And you, Solomon my son, know the God of your father and serve him with a whole heart and with a willing mind, for the Lord searches all hearts and understands every plan and thought. If you seek him, he will be found by you, but if you forsake him, he will cast you off forever.”
Carpe Diem? No. This is what the trailblazers of this world would have you believe. Since nobody has pierced the veil of death, all they can say is to seize the day.
However, Hebrews 2:10 and 12:2 shows Jesus as humanity's arkegon (trailblazer). And because Jesus made a path from death to life, He doesn't want us to live just for the day.
Carpe Aeternum! He is the Trailblazer who fought for our eternal life.