John 20:3-8 So Peter and the other disciple started for the tomb. Both were running, but the other disciple OUTRAN Peter and reached the tomb first. He bent over and looked in at the strips of linen lying there but did not go in. Then Simon Peter, who was behind him, arrived and went into the tomb. He saw the strips of linen lying there, as well as the burial cloth that had been around Jesus’ head. The cloth was folded up by itself, SEPARATE from the linen. Finally. the other disciple who reached the tomb first, also went inside. He saw and BELIEVED.
What makes a circle complete? For one, it has to end from where it started. Secondly, a circle cannot be a circle if it has some curve or defect…i.e from whichever angle you come from, the area inside must be equal and even. And that too applies for a LOVE CIRCLE. Before you get lost, let me explain the above scripture.
It is Easter Sunday, John the BELOVED and Simon Peter are still mourning Jesus’ demise. Then Mary Magdalene shows up with some stunning news: Jesus’ body has gone missing. Without a word…the two men start running…but one outrans the other but when he get at the tomb, he doesn’t go in. The other, panting and out of breathe gets there and without a second thought goes in for a personal encounter. After a while, John, the BELOVED get in, sees and BELIEVES.
But wait a minute, what are you trying to say? What does that have to do with my everyday reality? I say…EVERYTHING and much more. You see…John was the disciple that Jesus loved. The Bible doesn’t tell us why he chose to love him like he did. Peter, on the other hand was the disciple who loved Jesus. His radical love for Christ caused him to do the unthinkable both in faith and fury. But all the same, his heart burnt out with a love unquencheable.
Before Jesus comes back for his own…THE LOVE CIRCLE has to be complete. John, the Beloved represents Israel. Just like the love Jesus felt for John, Israel is GOD’S BELOVED. Simon Peter represents the REDEEMED CHURCH of Jesus Christ. You see, ISRAEL and THE CHURCH have many things in common. Both believe in a Messiah and are waiting for His return. But something is still missing…the circle is incomplete. Although Israel outran the church to the tomb, it stumbled in unbelief. The church entered the empty tomb and believed in a RISEN LORD and the first half of the LOVE CIRCLE was complete. ISRAEL is yet to enter and see and believe. But you and I as the Church ought to pray for the circle’s completion.
Romans 11:26-27 And so all Isael will be saved, as it is written:
‘THE DELIVERER WILL COME FROM ZION; HE WILL TURN GODLESSNESS AWAY FROM JACOB. AND THIS IS MY COVENANT WITH THEM WHEN I TAKE AWAY THEIR SINS.’
And that day when it happens….THE LOVE CIRCLE will be complete. ARE YOU PART OF THE FIRST CIRCLE? When is the last time you prayed for ISRAEL? It’s never too late.