“Jesus, The Risen 1k” – Easter 2018

Happy Easter! I decided yesterday to run the same distance the disciples Peter and John ran the day they heard Jesus was no longer in the tomb. A quick backstory about that is that for the few days after Jesus was crucified and buried, the disciples and other followers pretty much went into hiding. Knowing what the Jews did to Jesus, they were afraid they’d be next.  I guess this was the first case of the witness protection program!

So it’s pretty fascinating that when these followers of Jesus were told his body was no longer in the tomb, a couple of them, Peter and John, took off running. So much for being in hiding.

My best guess is they ran about 1.2 kilometers, or roughly 0.75 miles. More on that is in this post. So today I ran in their footsteps. I challenge you to do the same today, if you have time, or next Easter, and imagine the adrenaline those folks must’ve felt as they were running and then to discover the tomb was missing one key thing… a body. Crazy and amazing stuff!

-Out of the Wilderness

 

 

Advertisements

How far Peter ran to the tomb of Jesus

I’ve been fascinated by the details surrounding the death and resurrection of Jesus as it relates to Peter, particularly after Jesus was arrested, all the way up to the empty tomb. The rooster story happens (where Jesus predicted Peter would deny him 3 times, then a rooster would crow), and Peter weeps about it. Jesus is led to the place where he hung on the cross, he dies and is buried in a tomb. A few days later when some women go to visit this tomb, they discover it’s empty. Upon hearing this news soon after, Peter takes off to the tomb. The story as it’s told in Luke says Peter ran to the tomb. I may have another entire post on how he was beat by another disciple, who made a point of saying he outran Peter 🙂

grafspoed_grt

famous painting “Peter and John Running to the Sepulchre” by Eugene Burnand, ca. 1898

How far did he run, though? Well, I thought it would be easy to find out so I just Googled “How far did Peter run to Jesus’s tomb”… nada, zilch, zippo. I couldn’t find any info. Long story short, I figured I could possibly make a guess based on where Jesus’s tomb is believed to have existed, and where Peter first heard the wild claims that Jesus’s body wasn’t there.

Jesus was buried in a tomb carved out of rock. Most people believe it’s where the Church of the Holy Sepulchre exists today. Easy enough to get an address or location for that. But it would be more difficult to find out where Peter was that early morning when the news broke. None of the four gospels give any sort of landmark or description of wherever they were that morning, so I first looked up where Peter lived. It was in Capernaum. Ok, we have 2 points to measure! Only problem is Capernaum is 123 miles away from the ancient tomb of Jesus. Certainly Peter didn’t run that far!

Further research brought me to the place where the Last Supper happened. From what I read, it seems that this room was used by believers even after the Last Supper, crucifixion, and resurrection. This location is now called Cenacle, which is defined as the room where Jesus and his disciples had the Last Supper.

So from my little bit of research, I’m going with this: Peter ran from the Last Supper room to the tomb, which was about .75 miles (about 1.2 km). Take a look at the attached maps for these locations.

-Out of the Wilderness

 

What changed with the roosters?

I wanted to write up an extremely insightful post about the deep spiritual message about Peter in the last few days of Jesus’s life on earth. Something about the time between when the rooster crowed and when he ran to the tomb to see if what he’d heard was true, that Jesus wasn’t there.

You see, Peter was a disciple, a devout follower of Jesus, and was willing to die for Him, as recorded in Luke 22:33. So I am trying to put myself in Peter’s position, with such a confidence in my relationship with Jesus.

Then you get to the part where a rooster crows and everything changes. Fast forward to a few days later and women who had gone to visit Jesus’s dead body in the tomb report that HIs body is no longer there. Those women tell the disciples and who was it running to the tomb? Peter.

So my questions for you are these:

  1. What happened in Peter’s mind and heart between the rooster crowing and the empty tomb?
  2. How can this part of Jesus’s life and story, relating to Peter and his own personal journey, be applied to our lives today, in 2018?

I’d truly love to get a conversation going in the comments and I will definitely be anxiously awaiting your take!

-Out of the Wilderness

Driving by the Golden Rule

In church today we discussed the meaning of the parable Jesus uses in Mark 4, which says in part, “By the measure you use, it will be measured and added to you.” To translate, it’s the Golden Rule, “Treat others the way you want to be treated.”

I didn’t feel convicted until I thought about my experience on the road. Not necessarily how I drive, but my attitude while I’m driving. I’m very decisive (totally opposite of how I am normally, which is quirky), and in turn I expect every other driver to be decisive, too.

With that in mind, here’s the catch: I don’t extend much grace or forgiveness to any other drivers, but I expect it in full from them.

Basically I act like I’m right you’re wrong, and if you can’t make a decision just get out of the way. I also get angry, anxious, impatient, perturbed, fed up when motorists think laws don’t apply to them. I’m very legalistic when it comes to obeying the rules of the road. Check out Steve McQueen here…

In the moments following this Hell’s Angel’s disregard for the law, nothing I thought about was very Golden Rulish.

So now I have something to work on while I’m in the car. Extending grace. Forgiving these inferior drivers. Not honking so much. Hitting the brakes to let someone make up for their idiotic decision.

I know there’s a place for administering justice and correction, so I guess I can be praying for discretion and discernment on which battles to fight, and which to let go.

-Out of the Wilderness

The top posts of 2017

I had so much fun posting blogs about life, love, music, dogs, and many other things in 2017. Here’s a list of top new posts from the year.

Music or music videos

  1. The woman in Keith Urban’s “Blue Ain’t Your Color” (10,653 views, posted Jan 10)
  2. The cast of Brett Young’s “In Case You Didn’t Know” (9,358 views, posted April 8)
  3. The dancers in Keith Urban’s “The Fighter” (7,661 views, posted April 5)

 

Dating or Relationships

  1. Ten more signs a Christian guy is into you (583 views, posted May 1)
  2. Rekindling an old flame (384 views, posted July 19)
  3. Rekindling an old flame, part 2 (285 views, posted Aug 9)

 

My favorite light-hearted posts from 2017

  1. A guy who (sometimes) shaves his legs (45 views, posted Sept 17)
  2. Encounter with a car salesman (39 views, posted Sept 28)
  3. Avoiding a “Talkative Tim” or “Chatty Cathy” (12 views, posted Sept 9)

 

My favorite thoughtful posts from 2017

  1. Thoughts about Virginia, and why I love the Nashville PD (80 views, posted Aug 16)
  2. I have a hard time saying no (10 views, posted Sept 15)
  3. Brief encounters (15 views, posted April 5)

 

My favorite spiritual posts from 2017

  1. What if God is the sun? (9 views, posted June 2)
  2. Jesus saved a bunch of animals, too (18 views, posted March 22)
  3. God is able (14 views, posted Feb 20)

 

I’ll be posting a lot this year as well, so please subscribe and come with me on another year-long adventure!

-Out of the Wilderness

To kill, or not to kill

A friend of mine met me for lunch yesterday and among the things we talked about was guns/ gun ownership/ self-defense. I think we got on the topic in somewhat of a round-about way, first discussing what we’d do (or have done) in scenarios where help might have been needed. Think: car accidents, someone being locked out of their car, house fires, robberies, that sort of thing.

We eventually got to a fear everyone’s thought about at some point: what if an intruder breaks into your house with a gun? I know there are different strategies based on who’s in the house already, like if you have a family, if you’re single, have roommates, etc. Our hypothetical scenario was us as fathers with a family in the house when it’s broken into. The question we asked was would we, or even could we, shoot to kill or would we do whatever we can to allow the intruder to live? My friend and I are both Christians, so while we agreed our first instinct was to defend the family, there’s another wrinkle to the story because we’d be dealing with someone that hasn’t met God…yet. Do we use a gun and, if the person is killed, take away their opportunity for salvation?

My stance was an enthusiastic, “Yes, send them to their Maker.”

My friend was discussing this days earlier and the other person in that convo is a father and husband, and he proposed that because he knows where his family members are going, as in Heaven because they’ve all become followers of Jesus, he would do whatever he can for the salvation of the intruder’s soul, even if it meant sacrificing himself or any member of his family. Sounds sick, right? That’s sort of what I was thinking but it’s more complex than that, and also there are ways to subdue the unwanted guest without killing, I guess.

So back to my friend and I chatting as we munched on lunch at First Watch. He then brought up the strongest defense in favor of the intruder… what example has God set for us in this kind of scenario? Well, He didn’t choose to save His son when He could’ve (when Jesus was on the cross, about to die). And Jesus died so others could live, so it’s kind of like the made-up scenario where maybe one of the family members dies, but the house intruder lives. God chose us, the humans/ sinners/ intruders over His son.

Rocked my world.

It’s still something I’ll think about in the coming days, but at this point I don’t know how that truth can be overcome. God chose us. He chose the ugly, mean, sinful intruder because He wanted us to have a chance at redemption. It’s a beautiful and completely unfair thing He did, and of course, I’m grateful.

But if I’m ever in a situation like the one that just happened in Vegas, I don’t know what I’d do. Are there more than the two obvious choices: let the gunman run wild, or kill the gunman? Maybe killing him so others can live is the answer. I texted my friend about what happened in Vegas and he texted back: “Shoot him… with a stun gun” …so maybe that would work, if the opportunity was there?

It’s a complex world we live in, and really the only way to rid ourselves of horrific events like [insert tragedy here] is to admit we are sinners in need of help. Then, as TobyMac says, “when love breaks through” things would begin to change for the better.

-Out of the Wilderness